Please welcome our newest writer, Ben Goheen, a Realtor and appraiser in Stillwater, MN. He is active on twitter and uses social media in his practice, he is an analytical thinker and has a great sense of humor, so we know you’ll love his writing. Please welcome him in the comments (as well as weigh in on his first piece).
Two recent press releases from NAR have peaked my interest but seemed to have gone fairly un-noticed. Both Century 21 and The Realty Alliance have partnered with REALTOR.com® to provide “Showcase Listing Enhancements” to their agents. This includes personal branding of listings, up to 25 jumbo size photos, open house alerts, full-motion videos and virtual tours.
Feeding the cash cow
Having to occasionally make extraordinary assumptions as a real estate appraiser, let me try to run some numbers. A Showcase Listing Enhancement for an agent in my area costs $199/year if you have 0-3 listings, $362/year for 4-10 listings and $766/year for 11-25 listings. The Realty Alliance claims to have more than 100,000 agents, meaning the street value is $20,000,000 on the conservative side.
According to Century 21 they are the world’s largest residential real estate sales organization with approximately 8,500 offices. Again being conservative we can add $20,000,000 in estimated revenue. The exact dollar amount these companies paid to NAR will most likely never be made public, but it’s pretty safe to say the Showcase Listing Enhancements aren’t given away for free. Not bad for a month’s worth of work.
Where is the money going?
Let’s hope the extra revenue helps bring positive change to the industry and not on something like this: