The Myth of “Full Service” Brokers

I was at a real estate settlement Friday when a fellow agent (who was there to mentor the agent, who was at her first career settlement) boasted that his company gets so many first time buyers because they are FULL SERVICE. What was interesting about this transaction and his matter of fact claim was that the buyer, a first time buyer herself, personally knew the agent. The buyer was attracted to the agent, not to the company or any claim of full service. She had a trust level with the agent.

The term “full service” became popular when traditional brokers felt panicked by discount and set fee brokers who began offering identical or improved services. Sometimes for tens of thousands less. How could they combat this? By insinuating they did more than others. So, I created this quiz when interviewing real estate agents.

The Full Service Broker Quiz

1. Is real estate your only job? No= limited service
2. Do you provide staging services and reports? No= limited service
3. Do you provide written closing cost estimates @ listing? No= limited service
4. Do you return all calls promptly? No= limited service
5. Return e-mails promptly? No= limited service
6. Call me weekly with feedback? (What day?) No= limited service
7. Provide a virtual tour of the home? No= limited service
8. Install a Talking House? No= limited service
9. Provide color property flyers? Unlimited? No= limited service
10. Provide a floor plan? No= limited service
11. Do you have an aggressive direct mail program? No= limited service
12. Do you hold regular open houses, or have me do it and still charge 5-6%? No= limited service
13. Provide CD’s with Virtual Tours for Open house buyers? No= limited service
14. Do you call ALL open house visitors for feedback? No= limited service
15. Provide a brochure box? No= limited service
16. Use a post sign and directional arrows? No= limited service
17. Offer Virtual tours on Realtor.com? (Showcase Home) No= limited service
18. Multiple pictures on Realtor.com? (Showcase Home) No= limited service
19. Property address on website and Realtor.com? No= limited service
20. Front page advertising on Realtor.com? (Feature Home) No= limited service
21. Have you ever sold a home in my neighborhood? No= limited service
22. Do you know the area well enough to properly demonstrate it to the buyer? What is the elementary school ? No= limited service
23. Do you talk directly with the buyer’s lender? No= limited service
24. Do you provide a home warranty? What is your contact’s name there? No= limited service
25. Explain the Contracts of Sale, instead of leaving them at your front desk with “sign here” post-its? No= limited service
26. Will you attend my settlement? No= limited service
27. Do you have an appointment call center for Realtors? No= limited service
28. A feedback system (e-mail) for Realtors? No= limited service
29. Can you refer top attorneys, contractors, inspectors, etc? No= limited service
30. Do you have an After Sale (Client Appreciation) Program? No= limited service
31. Do you offer FREE notary, faxing and photocopying? No= limited service

Enjoy these services for a low set fee at Help-U-Sell Harbinger Realty.

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