This week, Realtor.com® launched a campaign aimed at enlightening consumers about the essential roles played by buyer’s agents during real estate transactions.

The initiative emphasizes the myriad tasks—111 to be exact—that a buyer’s agent undertakes to facilitate a smooth home-buying process. 

Of course, consumers have been inundated with negative stories about real estate agents and the industry at large for years. With this week’s campaign launch, which unfolds across various media, perhaps the most important question is: 

How will consumers react?

The Comprehensive Role of Buyer’s Agents Explained

The campaign’s focal point is a list of 111 tasks that an independent buyer’s agent typically handles, illustrating the extensive involvement and dedication required to navigate the complexities of buying a home. 

To drive home the message that employing a buyer’s agent simplifies the intricate and often overwhelming task list associated with purchasing a home, Realtor.com® uses the slogan, 

“Here’s 111 things to-do. Or, do 1 thing. Find a buyer’s agent.”

The campaign launched with full-page ads in the Wall Street Journal and New York Post this week, sending the message that a buyer’s agent does so much more than just open doors. 

Buyers need professional support and expertise while navigating the largest financial decision of a lifetime, especially amid challenging market headwinds. The goal of this campaign is to make sure every American understands the value of having a buyer’s agent represent them by showcasing all the services they provide clients in a typical transaction.

Damian Eales

Realtor.com® CEO

RDC Urges Industry Professionals to Join the Cause

Although professionals within the industry have long understood the importance of buyer representation, this concept has not always been effectively conveyed to the general public.

When the National Association of Realtors (NAR) agreed to a proposed settlement, agents across the country began asking how they could better showcase their value. 

Similar to Realtor.com’s campaign, many agents began putting together lists of their own, detailing everything a buyer’s agent does to put their client’s best interests first. 

Now, Realtor.com is asking that the entire industry come together to get this message in front of everyone. 

We’re asking everyone in the industry – agents, brokers, MLSs, and even portals – to join the cause to help make sure consumers get the representation they need and deserve to avoid making costly mistakes.

Damian Eales

Realtor.com® CEO

To maximize the campaign’s reach, Realtor.com® is releasing a toolkit of promotional materials tailored for industry use. These will include customized assets, including a print ad, billboard ad, poster, newsletter, videos and social assets. 

For those who want to join the cause today:

Industry Voices Join the Dialogue

Rich Barton, CEO of Zillow, has voiced his support for empowering consumers within the real estate market on X (formerly Twitter):

Barton emphasized the principles of free and fair access to listings, independent representation, and transparent, negotiable agent compensation. These principles align closely with the points made by Eales in a Wall Street Journal op-ed, illustrating a united front in the industry toward enhancing consumer rights and transparency.

Now, about that op-ed…

WSJ Op-ed: Consumers React

Damien Eales, CEO of Realtor.com, published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal on April 17, titled “What Home Buyers Get for Those Agent Commissions.” 

In the article, Eales discusses the positive implications of the NAR settlement, which could “increase transparency and negotiating power for home buyers,” along with an increased level of professionalism among real estate agents. From there, Eales warns that dramatically cutting agent commissions—which may be what the Justice Department is aiming to accomplish—could have a negative impact on buyers. Comparing the U.S. real estate model to the Australian model, he explains that, in the latter, agents only represent sellers and might not disclose important property risks. 

Rather than discouraging the use of buyer’s agents Eales states that, “There are better ways to help home buyers save money,” including cutting transfer taxes, reducing property taxes and helping increase housing inventory by easing regulations for home builders.

The piece has already received over 500 comments, many of which showcase consumer sentiment toward real estate agents and the transaction process. 

While a few express an understanding of buyer representation, others remain wary or even downright angry, highlighting the general distrust of the real estate industry that has been perpetuated over the years. 

Here is a small sampling of comments: 

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Lisa Chinatti, broker-owner of the number one team in Massachusetts, noted that, instead of trying to defend what buyer’s agents do, it’s time to take a new approach. 

The public has spoken loud and clear that what we do, as it stands, isn’t worth it. Our opportunity is to elevate the industry. We need to pivot what we do, we need to listen to the consumers and we need to deliver a better, more robust consumer experience.

Lisa Chinatti

For a full, unfiltered reaction to the Realtor.com campaign and Eale’s op-ed in WSJ, tune in to today’s Knowledge Brokers Podcast