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RealtySpace Calls No Commission Listings Superior

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RealtySpace.com Says No Commission Listings Smarter


Press Release Fail

This is the actual press release in its full glory (my notes will be at the end and all bolds in the release are emphasized by me):

A recognized leader in no commission online FSBO real estate listings, RealtySpace.com is breathing new life into the sluggish real estate market.

Boca Raton, Fla. (PRWEB) October 29, 2008 — Free, no commission For Sale by Owner (FSBO) listings on RealtySpace.com are not just effective, according to two recent studies, FSBO listings make good economic sense. RealtySpace.com is now offering no commission home sales listings free.

Recent studies are clear. For Sale by Owner (FSBO) real estate listings mean sales that are much more profitable for sellers than conventional brokered listings. In September 2008, Consumer Reports concluded that home sellers who sold their homes without a real estate agent received more money for their home than sellers who used a real estate agent, both by paying no commissions and by receiving a higher selling price. This echoes the findings of researchers at both Stanford University and Northwestern University. Since there are no commissions owed when selling a property without a broker, sellers keep on average $18,000 more on a $200,000 home.

Furthermore, for home sellers, Internet-based real estate listings are extremely effective. According to figures provided by the National Association of Realtors, 84 percent of home buyers use the web as part of their home search. Listing a For Sale by Owner (FSBO) home on RealtySpace.com can only help.

Each real estate listing on RealtySpace.com has no commissions, but an impressive set of perks. Online listings may be accompanied by an attractive yellow sign emblazoned with an eye-catching ‘no commission’ notice. Each real estate listing can be accompanied by a slideshow of up to nine photos and can quickly and easily be turned into a printed flyer for even greater word of mouth on a For Sale by Owner real estate listing. On RealtySpace.com, buyers and sellers can communicate directly, with no middleman to get in the way.

To see no commission For Sale by Owner (FSBO) real estate links or to begin listing a home for sale, visit RealtySpace.com today.

That’s Not Press, That’s Propaganda

Let me start by saying that I have no problem with FSBO sites themselves, it’s a debate that’s been hashed and has nothing to do with the topic at hand. That said, I’ve bulleted each of the highlighted areas above and insert my notes:

  1. “according to two recent studies” – uh, what studies? You know how to use html to code in links all over the place to your site, but there’s no source for these so I’m just confused. Were they studies you did by asking the baristas at Starbucks what they thought?
  2. “good economic sense” – still, that’s a pretty subjective statement regarding a potential study that we don’t have access to nor does it have a name. Just sayin’.
  3. “Recent studies are clear” – see #1.
  4. “much more profitable for sellers” – see #2.
  5. “Consumer Reports” – see #1. Don’t worry, I found the report for you and it’s funny that the article was about negotiating commissions, not about not using an agent…
  6. “Stanford University and Northwestern University” – sweet, we have a name for it, no links… I was unable to locate these studies, so it’s just a guess that they exist.
  7. “attractive yellow sign” – I may be alone here, but this goes back to the subjectivity of #2.
  8. “get in the way” – once upon a time, there was a company named after a fish that played the “Realtors are bad” disruption card and they seem to be a traditional brokerage with a sophisticated IDX search function and extra admin staff. Disruption- been there, done that.

Could RealtySpace damage the real estate industry? Given their web traffic and poorly written press release, I doubt it.

I read a lot of press releases and come across many that are more propaganda-like opinion rather than simple news releases (which is typically what is to be expected of a press release). This one caught my eye first because I’ve never heard of RealtySpace but also because after a few lines, I noted several unsourced “studies.” I’m sure they’re a fine company, but at a minimum, they need some serious help with their press releases.

via: prweb
image via: flickr

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The American Genius - she has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Ben Goheen

    November 1, 2008 at 10:45 pm

    Hey Lani, here’s the Northwestern study. Who’s the genius now?

  2. Ryan Hukill

    November 1, 2008 at 10:45 pm

    I could go on all day tearing their ‘facts’ apart, but, honestly, I tire of arguing why FSBOs rarely work out to the seller’s advantage. However, I will say they need some help with their math. I don’t know too many agents making $18K on a $200K house.

  3. Lani Anglin-Rosales

    November 1, 2008 at 10:57 pm

    Ben– see, you just proved how simple it would have been for a link to be included- that took you what, two minutes?

    Ryan– well like I said, it’s not about a FSBO argument (which has already been beat to death publicly) but it is about their word choices. I’m not a Realtor but I would love $18k on a $200k house… also: a self-sufficient pony, PINK mittens, and a gallon of cookie dough ice cream served to me every morning in a golden bowl.

    The point is that we’re to assume that the unsourced “studies” are factual and we are left to research the named studies on our own for any semblance of context. Also, disruption is a game play we’ve seen fail.

  4. Jay Thompson

    November 2, 2008 at 12:39 am

    Here is the link to the Stanford report.

    This report is often offered up by pro-FSBO arguments (and stunningly, rarely linked to).

    It is lengthy, and for the most part concludes that real estate agents don’t usually “add value”, but concedes that homes sold by agents are usually sold faster (which does have a value, but that isn’t mentioned).

    What the pro-FSBO arguments never seem to mention is the fundamental flaw in the Stanford report — that being that the home sales studied were limited to homes on the Stanford campus, and that they are only available for purchase by the Stanford faculty and some senior staff. Comparing this closed “market” to the open market of the general public and extrapolating conclusions from this limited and exclusive market is ludicrous.

    The Stanford homes are limited, and can only be bought by a very limited subset of the general population.

    If you own a home on the Stanford campus, and you can only sell it to other Stanford faculty, it’s not difficult (at all) to canvas and solicit your entire potential buyer base and sell the home yourself.

    Of course most people reading this “news” from RealtySpace aren’t going to take the time to find the Stanford report or read and critically analyze it’s 23 pages. They are going to blindly believe a “news source”.

    I haven’t read the 37 page Northwestern report, so I can’t comment on that. I’d bet a lot of money though that no one at RealtySpace read it either. My money would be on them reading some “summary” of it before “citing” it.

  5. Paula Henry

    November 2, 2008 at 5:58 am

    Lani –

    According to the Northwestern study, a home listed with a REALTOR, on the MLS, sells quicker. But…they say, not for more money. So what do you call the extra months of house payments, electric bills, insurance, etc. I’m guessing it’s not money???

  6. Steve Simon

    November 2, 2008 at 6:54 am

    This just in, “Eat whatever you want! Eat as much as you want! No exercise! Lose weight while you sleep!” $29.95 for a 30 day supply (plus shipping and handling).
    “Guaranteed to work or your money back (less shipping and handling)”
    http://www.ibelieveanything.com
    shipping and handling $39.95 western union money wire only…

  7. Missy Caulk

    November 2, 2008 at 7:24 am

    I’m sure the sellers that are able to sell to net more money, but problem is you can’t find those FSBO sites.

    Listing one in January, I told them to wait that has been on FSBO site for months. I couldn’t find it, so they sent me the link. How could a consumer find it?

    One photo, no description, wrong area.

  8. Mariana

    November 2, 2008 at 9:11 am

    This report is irresponsible – and misleading. However, it is more of an ad than a report, so it doesn’t bother me too much.

    Anyway, there are WAY too many home sellers out there who are not interested in taking on the sale of their home on their own – way too many folks who know the value of being professionally represented.

    If there is someone that wants to sell FSBO – then go for it, and I am glad that there are online services to help them.

    Just know that I am not going out of my way to show that home to my buyers, as I am not interested in being liable for BOTH sides of a transaction where ONE party isn’t even licensed, and I’m not get paid on top of that? Not interested. – Just how I choose to do business.

    However, if my Buyer WANTS a FSBO, I know that I will clobber a non-represented Seller – just like I would clobber a poorly-represented Seller, all in the name of the best-interest of my Buyer client.

    …just sayin’

  9. Jamey Prezzi

    November 2, 2008 at 4:05 pm

    What I found funny is how they use statistical data from NAR to promote their own product.

    Nice.

  10. Vicki Moore

    November 3, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    The FSBO process works for a limited number of people in a specific type of market – just like the two studies quoted.

    Shuffling paper is one thing. Negotiating is another. Clobber is a pretty good word for it.

  11. Jim Gatos

    November 6, 2008 at 2:16 pm

    I just put o deposit a “FSBO” listing and I am dealing with an idiotic seller and a dumb lawyer. The seller signed the P&S and then turns around and says “I didn’t know what I was signing..” UH, DUH, why did you sign it?

    I “cringe” in situations like that…

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I don’t gamble. RIP to Mister Kenny Rogers, but this whole folding, holding, walking, running business is bad for my heart.

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We need to start recognizing that.

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