Episode 319 – Joe Rand, Chief Creative Officer, Howard Hanna Rand Realty

TRES 319 | Real Estate

TRES 319 | Real Estate


Admit it or not, we have different treatments to the buy-side of things compared to the selling side in real estate. In this episode, Joe Rand provides examples of these differences. Joe is the Chief Creative Officer of Howard Hanna Rand Realty, one of the country’s largest family-owned real estate brokerages. He also discusses the vulnerabilities and not having proper assurances buyer agents face when dealing, which includes commissions. Stay tuned to learn more from Joe Rand because real estate is not just buying and selling, and it involves a lot more enclosed on those terms.

Joe Rand, Chief Creative Officer-Howard Hanna Rand Realty

Welcome to episode 319. Thank you so much for reading and for telling a friend. If you haven’t guessed, he’s back. Joe Rand is going to do a regular episode of the show. We did twenty episodes of Randing and Raving and had a lot of fun with that. With some of the things happening in the world with real estate, I thought I’d bring Joe back at his take as only Joe can do it. I’m not going to do an interview with Joe upfront about his background. I’ve done that before.

To let you know quickly, he’s got a Law degree from Georgetown and JD from Stanford. He taught at Fordham and works with Howard Hanna Rand Realty in Westchester County. It’s a family-owned business they’ve had for decades. He’s one of the smartest guys I know in real estate. He might be the smartest guy I know in real estate. Who else but Joe to come on here and chat about some of these topics? Let’s get this thing started. Joe, welcome to the show.

Bill, how are you? It’s good to see you.

I’m doing great. I’m so excited to get you back and fired up to chat with you. Some things are happening in the world of real estate that I thought, “Who can I get some knowledge about this? Who’s the guy that knows what’s going on and that’ll be honest?”

You called a bunch of people. You called Rob Hahn but he wasn’t available. You called what’s on the list, all the various doers but at some point, I returned your call because I like you, Bill. I took an interest in doing this. I appreciate it. I wasn’t at the top of the list but I’m on the list, which is something.

For those of you who’ve missed Joe’s first episode, we have a traditional episode with Joe Rand where I do my thing and find out about how Joe got started in the business, what he did as a kid and all that great stuff. That’s not going to happen here.

That was years ago before we knew each other. How we got to know each other was on the show. The only reason you knew who I was was that somebody had come on the show and said nice things about my book and then you said, “I got to interview this guy.” We interviewed and hit it off. I was lucky enough to be on what I think is the Bill Sessions Podcast, although I know it’s not your name. Your name is Bill Risser. I was on that once but in 2021, we did something fun, which was me being my alter ego for weeks.

I have a playlist on the website. You can go get all twenty Randing and Raving with Joe Rand.

The theme was you would get questions from the public and they would give me an audio question. I would not know what it is in advance and not be prepared for it. I would have to be spontaneous to respond. The idea, as you initially pitched that to me, was that whenever I do a podcast, I’m pretty good for about 30 minutes to 40 minutes and then get tired. I start getting little nuts because my medication wears off. You’re like, “I want you in the post medication phase to the part where you start to lose control of yourself.”


TRES 319 | Real Estate

Real Estate: The next three to five years something disruptive will happen to the buy-side commission at about 20 to 25%, which is a lot higher than a year ago.


This happens on stage. You speak a lot around the country. It’s my favorite part sitting in the audience going, “I can see it coming and happening. He’s going to go off on that thing.”

I do. I get bored with myself. I’m like, “I got to level this thing up.” We had fun with that. That was a great thing. For anybody who never heard it, go back and look for them because they hold up. All the issues we talked about are still relevant. Most people have a burning question as to whether they would rather fight 100 duck-sized horses or 1 horse-sized duck, which is one of the questions we answered and what you should do if you steal stuff from a supermarket.

That was another good one. Plus, some real estate stuff that we covered but we want to have a serious one because this is a serious show. It’s a real substance show, not my normal BS. I might try to play the straight answer question and see what you have to say and if I can help out people and give them some insight into what’s going on.

Not so fast. I got some emails still hanging around. I thought, even though we’re part of this show, I’m going to throw you an audio question. It was one of the topics I wanted to cover anyway. It works out perfectly. What do you think? Are you up for it?

Do you want to keep the format? We’re doing a crossover episode. I’m going back to the 1970s when someone from Friends would show up on Seinfeld or something. Let’s get those audio questions.

Here we go.

“Willie here from Melbourne. I’m a big fan and reckon you’ve got an opinion over this passion between NAR and the DOJ. Overall, the policy has been around for years so I’m hoping you would mind giving us your take. I liked your show and that Risser guy, he’s amazing. Cheers.”

That is shameful, Risser.

What are you talking about?


It's all contingent that if you don't buy something, you pay nothing. Click To Tweet


Risser, you can pick up on this. When we stopped doing the Randy and Raving, people stopped leaving messages. Risser didn’t have any voicemails. He made himself a voicemail faking his voice with an Australian accent that he got because he hangs out all this time with all these Aussies from RateMyAgent but he still hasn’t picked up a decent accent. That is horrible. That is not as clearly you teeing me up to talk about all the stuff that’s going on with the NAR lawsuits and the Department of Justice. It’s a fine question, Bill. I’m amazed that you had to resort to that shamefulness to incorporate an audio message that you made for yourself.

Councilor, I plead the fifth.

You don’t want to incriminate yourself. I respect that. Despite the fraudulent nature of that voicemail, Bill, you trying to fake your audience and mislead them into thinking that people are still calling the Randing and Raving line, even though we both know the only people that called in were your buddy from Arizona and a bunch of Russian bots, besides the fact that it’s a good question. What it does is it tees up.

We’ll separate it into two issues because two things are going on with all the lawsuits and antitrust. One is clear cooperation and the other one is the seller paid buyer agent commission. Let’s talk about the latter one first, the seller paid buyer agent commission. There is a lot of concern and suspicion that both the DOJ and these lawsuits against NAR wind their way through the courts that there is some threat to the system by which sellers pay a commission to the buyer agents and the buyer agents don’t have to pay their buyer agents. It gets rolled into the purchase of the home

On a fundamental level, I want to explain why I think that the whole thing is nonsense. The people think, “This is a bad thing,” and it raises prices and all that stuff. To me, it’s self-motivated reasoning from people that want to blow up the real estate industry or have the business model that they’re trying to play up. That is this, the system works very well. The reason the system works is that there’s an offer of cooperation out from the seller, which is usually a unilateral offer of compensation so when you’re working with a buyer agent, that buyer agent can show you anything that’s in the market.

It’s not like buying anything else or a car. If you want to buy a car, you have to go to fifteen different lots. If we didn’t have cooperation, you’d have to go to fifteen different brokers because every broker would have only their properties to show you. Instead, you go to one agent and that agent represents you as your fiduciary and they can show you anything in the market. You don’t have to come out of pocket for those services at all.

It’s all contingent that if you don’t buy something, you pay nothing. It’s not a bad deal for the buyers. This idea if everyone’s getting screwed by the system, the buyers get a good service out of it. The sellers get a good service because they pay one commission, which covers the entire transaction and essentially, gets rolled into the price anyway. The idea if the seller pays the commission is paid out of the proceeds of the sale.

The money is coming from the buyer. The buyer gives the money to the seller. The seller takes a piece of it and gives it to the agents, including the buyer agent. The best part about it is that the buyer pays it off for 30 years. They don’t have to pay for it upfront, have to come out of pocket for it, worry about degrading from their down payments or anything like that. It’s a good system that works well. Prices and real estate have done very well in the United States under this system.

Some people are concerned about it and I understand the concerns. The concern is that the buyer ends up hiring a buyer agent but doesn’t have any ability to be able to negotiate their fee with that buyer agent because the fee is set by the seller and the listing agent by the offer of compensation. That is partly true but also partly nonsense because there are brokers, including Redfin that says to you as a buyer agent, “We will rebate to you what we get as a buyer commission.” This means that the buy-side is negotiable. You can negotiate the buy-side.


TRES 319 | Real Estate

Real Estate: If they got rid of the seller paid buy-side commission, that is absolutely something that every real estate broker in the country should be preparing for.


If you want to go to a buyer agent, say, “If you get an offer of compensation that’s more than 2%, I don’t want to get whatever is above 2%, 1.5% or 3%, whatever the prevailing commission rate is. I don’t want to get on to antitrust problems because of this dumb show. Whatever the number is, that’s the number. Anything above that number, you rebate back to me or you rebate back to me a hard number like $2,500, regardless of whatever it is.” That’s all negotiable. This idea that buyer agents can’t negotiate is nonsense.

Flip it around. This cartel of the real estate industry keeps commissions high because sellers have to pay two sides, the listing side and the buy-side and they don’t have the ability to negotiate the commission is a crazy idea. Bill, there was nothing more negotiable than a real estate commission. They’re all over the place. I can’t turn on CNN without seeing an ad for Ideal Agent, Homelite or any of these companies that promote the idea that you’re going to be able to get a discount from your listing agent.

What they’re doing is interjecting themselves and pretending that they’re going to connect you to an agent, take your referral fee and then force the agent to take a discounted commission, which that business model itself is objectionable from my perspective. The larger point is that everything is negotiable. There are tons of discount companies out there.

The guy from REX, Jack Ryan, is always talking about how the cartels restricting his business. Do you know what’s restricting his business? It’s his business model. He says, “I’m going to charge you less,” but all he’s charging is the listing side. He doesn’t pay a buy-side so he’s not getting the biggest exposure. Buyer agents don’t want to work for nothing and they are not very good at negotiating with their buyers to get a buyer-side commission. He’s saying, “They’re holding me back,” but he’s out there with millions of dollars of advertising to advertise this 2% commission like a bunch of other people. Everyone knows they can negotiate the commission.

The other piece of that is this argument that it’s compulsory that if you want to be an MLS, you have to offer a buy-side. You can offer $0.50. They don’t say what the number is. NAR is so dumb about so many things. One of the things they’re dumb about is why don’t the MLS get rid of the idea that you have to offer a buy-side commission? Eliminate that you have to make an offer of compensation as a requirement. You get rid of a lot of these concerns.

You effectively have that and the worst of all worlds. People do take listings, put them on MLS and put them out for $0.50 but, at the same time, you’re getting all the regulatory and legal scrutiny because you are saying that they have to make an offer of compensation. They have to offer a penny. They can offer anything. It’s all stupid and dumb. The system works well. How is this sold for what they’re worth? It’s a perfectly transparent and fluid market. What makes it work is that someone is working for the listing side and buy-side. It’s an adversarial system. Every lawyer understands that the adversarial system is the best way to elicit the truth in legal proceedings but they immediately say, “They don’t need it in real estate sales,” which is ridiculous.

Joe, I love you. I’m going to say that honestly. That is that’s amazing. I guarantee you that no other show that doesn’t have you on it got that excitement, energy and honesty. What is going to be a massive change in the business if the decision goes a certain way? Let’s say cooperation goes away. Do lenders then get involved heavily and start trying to roll the buyer’s fee to the agent into the loan? In escrow, we’re paying out a commission from the proceeds of the loan. How will this work? Most people can’t pay the buyer’s agent.

Everything I’ve said so far was me saying what I can’t understand why people think that getting rid of the seller-paid buy-sell would be a good thing and these arguments that the Antitrust Institute is putting out. I understand why the plaintiffs are putting it out. They’re trying to make money. It’s a class-action lawsuit. The lawyers are trying to get money. I get that but I don’t understand the DOJ’s perspective or the antitrust division’s position on this much.

I spoke at American Antitrust Institute with the Jack Ryan guy from REX, who got to speak for an hour and rail against the real estate industry. They gave twenty minutes to me and James Dwiggins from NextHome to give the pro. It was very much not an equal time type of thing because the American Antitrust Institute see antitrust everywhere they look. They thought there was an antitrust issue. I don’t buy any of that.


There are tons of discount companies out there. Click To Tweet


I can’t get three brokers to agree to do anything. The idea that we’re acting as a cartel is amazing to me if you knew anything about how brokers work with each other. That’s why I think it’s nonsense but there is a real possibility that the seller-paid buy-side to go with. What do we do if that happens? Do I think that’s likely? No. Do I think it’s possible? Yes. I would put it within the next years of something disruptive happening to the buy-side commission at about 20 to 25%, which is a lot higher than I had it in 2021.

It’s not as high as Rob Hahn has it. Rob has at about 105%. Likely that’s going to happen. I love Robin but he has a very pessimistic view of this whole process and how it’s going to play out. It’s possible. Even if you peg it at 5%, it would be such a disruptive event if they got rid of the seller-paid buy-side commission. That is something that every real estate broker in the country should be preparing for. I don’t see enough of that happening.

I’ve been speaking about it at Inman at a virtual session I did. I’ve been talking about it on shows like this and when I talk to people. We need to be prepared for the possibility. If I were to say to a broker, “Let’s say tomorrow, you could no longer get paid your buy-side commission by the seller. You have to get the buyer to pay it. Are you prepared to be able to do that?” Nobody is prepared to do that. If we want buyers to pay it, a couple of things have to happen.

Number one, we should start institutionalizing buyer-side representation agreements. Why don’t we have buy-side representation agreements? Why won’t we work with a seller without an exclusive right to represent but we’ll work with a buyer who’s like, “Call me up and I’ll meet you at the house?” What are we doing here? Why do you still meet people in the house? If a buyer calls you that wants to see the house, you’re not doing your job if go meet them.

If I’m a doctor and someone calls me up and says, “I have a heart attack.” “Come on in. Let’s go meet at the emergency room.” “I want you to come to my house to treat me.” “I’m not going to treat you in your house. I’m not doing you a service if I’m going to visit you. I have to be where the equipment is.” You’re a buyer agent. You need to know whether they can afford that house because you’re wasting their time and yours if you go see a house and you haven’t pre-qualified that buyer for that house. You got to know a little bit about what they like.

Maybe they want to see that house. They don’t even know the house is under a bunch of high wires and you know they’re not going to like it when they see it. They’re asking you questions and you’re like, “There are three other houses like it. We should go see 4 houses if we’re going to go see 1.” That’s your job and what you do. You’re not doing your job if you say, “Let me drive over and I’ll meet you at the front step.”

The reason they do it is that they’re so insecure about these agents. They’re like, “I might lose the buyer.” You’re not losing a buyer. They’re not a buyer yet. They’re a schmuck on the phone calling up to say they want to see a house. They want to buy again so they get pre-qualified. “They don’t want to meet me and are not willing to come to my office.” It’s fine.

“Quite honestly, it’s not safe for me to meet you at somebody’s house. I don’t know who you are. You could be a crazy person.” “A little bit on that but I want to see this one house.” “Let’s meet at a Starbucks and we’ll drive right over from the Starbucks.” You got to see them before. In other words, we don’t do anything for buyers. For sellers, we have a listing presentation and materials. We go in, show up on time, got our stuff, knock, smile and walk-in. We’ve got a CMA ready, which we spend two hours preparing.

We go in with scripts, dialogues and a contract. We go over the contract and it says, “Pay the commission and the whole bit.” We then walk out with a listing. There is nothing equivalent on the buy-side. On the buy-side, you’re insecure to the moment that you get into a contract because you never locked that buyer into working with you. Why is that, Bill?


TRES 319 | Real Estate

Real Estate: We should treat buyers the same way we treat sellers with the same level of respect and professionalism and the same level of attention and the same level of expectation.


Joe, I don’t know. All I know is you’re sitting in a chair, can’t pace and it’s driving you nuts.

Here’s the thing. We should treat buyers the same way we treat sellers with the same level of respect, professionalism, attention and expectation. You won’t list work with a seller unless that seller signs an exclusive right to sell. Why would you work with a buyer unless that buyer signs an exclusive right to represent?

I could see making some changes in an exclusive right to represent that is different from the exclusive right to sell to acknowledge the fact that buyers sometimes want the freedom if they see FSBO on their own or something like that. Some properties are not on MLS. You got to leave some accommodations. We make some accommodations to the fact that it’s not yet standard. You get exclusive representation agreements done certainly not in most parts of the country. You make allowances.

We have an exclusive buyer representation agreement in our company and it’s terminable at will. It’s not like our exclusive rights to sell, which is good for nine months. You can’t break it for nine months. The exclusive buyer, you can terminate it after a day. A lot of my agents get it signed and said, “It only applies to what we see now.” They get an exclusive representation for what they show for that day. They’re protected for that day. To me, that is a fine incremental step forward.

The reason we don’t do that for buyers is simply that buyer agency is still in relative infancy. We’ve only had a buyer agency in New York since the early 1990s. There are parts of the country where everybody worked for the seller until relatively, there was no independent buyer representation or fiduciary representation of the buyers. They’re all subagents or whatever the case may be.

I look back and say, “If you go back to the ‘40s, you would see that there were lots of listings that were taken that were open listings, exclusive agency listings or non-exclusive representational listings.” The point is that it took a while for the industry to get around to the idea that you shouldn’t work with the seller unless you have exclusive rights to sell. How many times did they get burned? They put the sign-up. It’s an exclusive agency, the person sees the sign and it goes directly to the seller instead of going to the agent.

That’s why you don’t do non-exclusive right to sell because it’s too easy for the buyer to then communicate directly with the seller and cut you out. You got to get the exclusive right to represent, which gives you a commission regardless of who buys the home. The buyer agency industry hasn’t grown up, evolved and matured yet that people treat it the way they do listings.

To me, that’s a real flaw and mistake that we don’t treat buyers with the same level of professionalism. We have that whole song and dance listing presentation and there’s no equivalent for the buyer presentation. There’s no like, “Here’s what you do in a buyer presentation and how to make a good buyer presentation.” Some people do it. I’m not saying something that has never been said in the industry before but it is something that is still not prevalent in the industry.

Not having that in place pushes the solution if the decision goes the way that we’re talking about it potentially. You’ve got so far to go. If you had that same action and treatment for the buyer, it’s an easy next step and route.


Every lawyer understands that the adversarial system is the best way to elicit the truth in legal proceedings. Click To Tweet


Within the next years, we’ll create a situation where it became standard to do an exclusive right to represent with a commission obligation. You see our commission obligation on the buy-side like our buyer representation agreement at Howard Hannah Rand Realty that says, “Any commission obligation you have will be offset by whatever the seller offers us.” The seller offers us less than what we’re supposed to get under the agreement. If they theoretically offer 2% and we have an agreement with the buyer at 2.5%, we only collect half percent from the buyer.

To be honest, we mostly ended up waiving that because as long as the seller offers us a reasonable commission on the buy-side, we’ll take it. We won’t try to get the buyer out of pocket. The point is it’s there to protect against a situation where the buyer does end up buying FSBO. That’s what you want to have it in. If you have that and you’ve got it in place, then the seller is not offering compensation any more transitions to the agreement is there. If the seller offers us compensation, it will still happen.

Even in the environment that you talk about, there will still be sellers that will offer compensation to the buy-side, even though they’re not required to. The idea would be like, “Since I’m not getting paid by the listing side, then the buyer’s going to have to pay it up.” If that were to happen, you have the agreement in place so you’re a little bit more protected. There are lots of creative ways to roll that buyer commission into the deal. You can make it a condition of the sale. There are some ethical issues that NAR has put out that are more stupid NARS stuff. You can’t do that but you would deal with it.

It was permissive to everybody and nobody has a problem with it. The idea if you say, “This $490 offer is contingent on the seller covering the buyer’s compensation obligation,” is the easy way. That’s not getting into the idea of what you said, which is that maybe the lenders build into their models that they’ll offer you this much money because they need some of it to go to pay a buy-side commission to work for work that the realtor did. That’s possible as well.

At the very least, we need those buyer agreements done. If we got the buyer agreements, then we have a little bit of protection in the event. In other words, we’ve got redundancy. We’re getting paid by the listing side but we also have a right to get paid by the buy-side if the listing side doesn’t pay us. All of a sudden, the trap door falls but we’ve already got the redundancy so we already have a platform to get paid. That’s easy.

The other thing we need to do besides professionalizing our relationship with buyers and getting buyer representation agreements done is even if this doesn’t happen, if the whole industry doesn’t implode and the buyer side commission still gets paid by the seller and nothing changes, we still need to do this anyway. We need to find a better way as an industry of demonstrating and documenting the work that we do. We don’t do that very well. I don’t know why but the industry has coalesced around a couple of narratives that are so self-destructive.

What I’ve heard people talking about for a long time is the idea that our job is to make the real estate transaction easy. “Do you want a seamless, more efficient real estate transaction? Work with me. I’ll make it a dream.” It’s such a stupid promise to make. First of all, you can’t promise that and you ended up breaking the promise. Every real estate transaction has a certain amount of messiness to it.

The other part about it is that when you want to sell, it’s the idea that buying or selling a house is a nightmare. It is horrible. There are pitfalls, trap doors and one million things that can go wrong. If you’re not in the right hands, it could be a disaster for you. This is unbelievable. Do you think when doctors or oncologists advertise, they’re like, “Cancer is not a big deal. Don’t worry about cancer so much. Work with me and I’m going to make sure cancer is not a problem?” They don’t do that. Cancer is horrible.

When lawyers advertise for slip and fall stuff, they make it sound like, “Those insurance companies got big attorneys working for them. You need someone to work for you.” Why don’t we advertise that way and throw the fact, “You’re going to go buy a home and work directly with the listing agent and a shark. They’re going to take everything that you own?”


TRES 319 | Real Estate

Real Estate: The idea of buying or selling a house is a freaking nightmare. There are pitfalls and there are trap doors and there are a million things that can go wrong. And if you’re not in the right hands, it could be a disaster for you.


You need someone to represent you when you buy a house because everybody is going to the listing agent so they can save some money. With the low inventory, they have a better chance of getting it. You want to disabuse them of that and say, “Why would you go into the used car lot and work directly with the salesman rather than have a fiduciary champion on your side to do battle for you? We make it seem easy when we should be making it seem hard. That’s why you need us.” We need to show how hard it is.

This second piece is mostly because agents are not lazy but they’re not good at documenting all the stuff that goes into the work that they do. You take a listing. What do you have to do? You got to write up a description and order the photos or video at Matterport. You have to enter all the details into the MLS grid and make sure it’s all correct. You get it out, have to order a sign and start the marketing campaign. Off the top of my head, there’s a bunch of things you have to do.

What is the seller’s note? “We’re going to get your home on the market.” That’s all we said. There are 50 things you have to do that none of which you ever detail to the buyer or the seller as something you did or sitting there with a buyer. When you work with a buyer, all the buyer thinks that you’re doing is opening the door for that like, “I don’t need a buyer agent. All they do is open the door and walk me through.” We don’t explain that there’s a lot of work that goes into keeping track of 7,000 pieces of inventory that changes every day in a market and making sure I know what’s going on.

There’s a lot of work that goes into screening these properties. It may not be a lot of work to show you the house like to walk around with you. There’s the kitchen and the living room. It’s not brain surgery to do that. With the buyer agent stuff, there are one million things that happen after the deal gets accepted. We’ve got to order an inspection, negotiate the inspection, shepherd the deal, negotiate the final transaction, deal with any inspection issues, get the attorneys and the mortgage people working together and get the mortgage to the point of clear to close all that stuff. There’s a lot of stuff but none of which we do document or detail for the buyer.

The point is real estate agents are like ducks gliding across the water. You see the duck and you’re like, “Look at that graceful duck.” Meanwhile, the duck’s legs are paddling furiously trying to get them across the water but you don’t see the paddling. You just see the gliding. For some reason, real estate agents love to make it look easy. “I’m not going to show sweat. I’m going to handle this and make it look good,” but they should be making it look hard.

Only to give you an idea and a very subtle plug, I invested in and worked with a startup. The startup’s goal is to build an app that helps you track, as an agent, all the work you do for your clients, both as a way of alerting them to the work that you do but also tracking the work you do. Thereby, at the end of a transaction, you can go tap and it would send to them, “Here are all the things I did on your transaction.”

How would it do it? If you had all the right inputs into the app, you walk into a house and that house is for sale. The app pops up with a notification, “You’re in 123 Ridgeway. This house is for sale. Are you showing it or previewing it?” “I’m showing it.” “Who are you showing it to do?” You do a drop-down of all your clients that you work with. “I’m doing it with this person.”

The app knows enough to say, “It took you twenty minutes to get to the house when you left your office. We’re going to take the twenty minutes of the travel time, plus the time you spend in the house, plus the time it takes to get back to wherever you’re going next.” That is an hour you spent showing that house. People think, “We only asked for ten minutes.” “Yes, but I had to go there, get back and prep.” We think the app would be very useful for people.

First of all, it’d be useful for both buyers and sellers to justify the commissions that we get paid because they don’t see enough of what we do. Being able to say to a seller at the end of a transaction, “Here’s a list of all the things I did all documented with the date, time, what it was and the activity,” would go a long way to saying to the seller, “I earned my X percent from selling this house.” At the same point, it would be on the buy-side. “I earned whatever I’m making from the seller.” It would be useful if indeed the buy-side commission went away because it would be able to justify to the buyer, “This is why you’re hiring me.”


Buyer agency is still in its relative infancy. Click To Tweet


With all of these reports, you go to your next buyer and listing presentation and say, “Here’s the report for my last seller. I got paid $80 or $70 an hour for the amount of work I did because of all the hours I put in.” On top of that, we need to be prepared for alternate payment models. It might be that the buy-side commission goes away. What’s a good replacement? A la carte pricing. You pay me for showing, per hour, this and that. We become like the landlord in Les Miserables. “We had this much for the lice and mice, extra for the door,” all that stuff.

We started charging for the stuff we do. To me, that is the future. We have to be ready, not only that we have agreements in place to protect our right to a commission if we work with the buy-side but we also have to be ready to be able to justify to the buy-side why we deserve to get paid because we do. There’s a lot of the buyer agents do that they should get paid for.

Joe, thank you for the show that I talked about the least ever in history. I knew this would happen and you’d be very passionate about this topic. I’m going to do this because they do it every time we talk. This passion went into two good books. One of them, I’ll call the triple D book because I always screw up the order of the words so that book is called?

Disruptors, Discounters and Doubters.

The other one is How to be a Great Real Estate Agent, which is fantastic. I always plug those books for you because I’ve read them both. I promote them to new agents and experienced agents all the time. It’s fantastic what you’re doing in the industry. This is a wonderful episode. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and being so open, honest and passionate. It’s been great.

I appreciate you having me on. The only thing I’ll ask is we never even got to clear cooperation problem but maybe another time. That is the other mess that NAR created for itself. Another thing is well-intentioned and it’s good because you know how much I hate pocket listings and how bad they are for everybody except for the listing agent who wants to double-side a deal. The pocket listing is the biggest fraud in the industry.

We have an episode of that in Randing and Raving. I’m going to take you up on that. I’ll reach back out to you.

Thank you for having me on, Bill. It’s always a pleasure. I appreciate it. I’ve always loved your show. I wish you continued good luck with RateMyAgent because that’s been successful going across the country. You work on that and that’s your full-time job. Congrats on that.

Thanks, Joe. I appreciate having you here.

Be well.


Important Links


About Joe Rand

TRES 319 | Real EstateJoseph Rand is the Managing Partner of Howard Hanna | Rand Realty, one of the largest family-owned real estate brokerages in the country. Last year, Rand Realty participated in over $2.5 billion in real estate transactions, becoming one of the top 100 real estate companies in the country.

Joe is also the author of two books about the real estate industry. His first book, “Disruptors, Discounters, and Doubters,” is about what the industry needs to do to adapt to outsider challenges, mainly by improving the client experience in buying or selling homes. His second, “How to Be a Great Real Estate Agent,” presents his “Cloent-Oriented Real Estate” training philosophy, showing agents how to build their business by being great at their jobs. Both books are available on Amazon and other online booksellers.

Joe is well-known as one of the leading real estate trainers in the country, speaking at national conventions and conferences on the subject of professionalism, business development, and quality service. He is a periodic contributor to the leading real estate industry media site Inman.com, and has maintained several blog sites of his own, including the “Client-Oriented Real Estate” site about his theories on real estate education and his “Move to SUMA” blog about his personal experiences moving from the city to the suburbs.

Joe has received numerous industry honors, including being named as an Inman Influencer, and RIS Media Newsmaker, and to the Swanepoel/T360 list of the 200 most powerful people in real estate in the real estate almanac.

You can find his personal home page at www.joerand.com.


Bill RIsser, Bill Risser

Bill has been producing The Real Estate Sessions Podcast since July 2015. Passionate about learning the backstories of Industry Leaders, Bill seeks out established professionals as well as up and coming stars in real estate.

Leave a Comment