For this episode of The Walk Thru, Byron Lazine and The Broke Agent sit down with the king of Philadelphia, Tom Toole, and Jason Cassity, the cofounder of REFER, to discuss agent commissions, dwindling offer competition and sales, and a brilliant strategy for extending the life of social media posts. 

Commission Watchdog

According to a recent Inman article, the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is calling out the structure of agent compensation as inequitable and inefficient, saying agents who sell million-dollar homes don’t work much harder than agents selling median-priced homes. 

Tom Toole disagreed. Jason, who sells in San Diego, CA, can see, to a point, what they’re saying, but he sees more of a discrepancy in the workload and required skill level between listing agents and buyers’ agents. 

Byron asked why the CFA hasn’t talked to consumers and asked them, “Why are you willing to pay 6% on these homes when you could pay $500 and just list it on the MLS for yourself?” 

Commission is negotiable. And if somebody says, ‘Well, you know, everybody’s walking in the door saying 5%, do you have any other options for me?’ I’ve been confronted with that question. And yes, I do. I have my 6% plan, my 7% plan, and my 8% plan. Which one would you like to hear about first?

Byron Lazine

Offer Competition Dwindles per Redfin

Our second Inman article focused on dwindling offer competition, saying fewer than half of the home offers written in June by Redfin agents ended up in a bidding war – making it the slowest month for offer competition in over two years.  

Byron pointed out that a “competing offer situation” could be one competing offer that’s been sitting on the table for two weeks. The words “multiple offers” do not mean today what they meant three months ago.  

I think that’s why we’re seeing prices not drop completely yet, because… going from 20 offers to two or three offers, that’s still multiple offers, so it keeps the price right at listing or just about. So, it’s a situation where it’s coming down but we’re not quite down down yet.

Jason Cassity

5th Month of Declining Sales

That leads us to our third Inman article for today: “Home sales fall for 5th month as median prices hit record high.” 


Byron asked Tom what he expects to see: continuing double-digit gains, continuing appreciation at a slower rate, or even a drop in home values. 

We’ve seen double-digit appreciation since June in the suburbs. In the city of Philadelphia, it’s only been about a 5% increase in the median sale price. And I think that’s happening in a lot of other markets. In terms of home sales, we’ve definitely seen home sales decrease, anywhere from like 8 to 15% year-over-year, depending on what county you’re in… It’s gonna depend on where you’re located.

Tom Toole

How to Extend Life of Posts

On Tuesday, The Broke Agent wrote a blog post that not only describes Jason Pantana’s brilliant strategy for extending the life of a social post but actually demonstrates it. 

It’s a genius tactic by Pantana. He said he’s getting something with tens of thousands of views through Google that’s still driving it to the same Instagram post because he embedded it.

The Broke Agent

He and Byron pointed out a few things you’ll want to remember when setting this up on your own blog, along with the importance of SEO in your Instagram caption. 

The discussion wrapped up with an invitation to Jason to talk about REFER – a nationwide referral network co-founded by him and The Broke Agent. 

Watch the full episode for more. 

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