Just as not all traditional, full-service, real estate brokerages are the same, neither are discount brokerages. And while discount brokerages may have some negative misconceptions surrounding them, here’s why hiring a real estate agent from a discount brokerage can be a great idea:
Most realtors, whether they work at a traditional, full-service brokerage or at a discount brokerage, work hard to become the top of their field. The services they can provide are exactly the same and include some of the following:
Your real estate agent has to follow the same set of rules and ethics regardless of what type of brokerage they work with. All real estate professionals are governed by the same body – the BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA) and the high standards of conduct are consistent across the board.
Loyalty to their clients is of the utmost importance and they are required to maintain your confidentiality at all times – even after the sale or purchase of your home is complete.
Your real estate agent will, and must, follow all of your lawful instructions regardless of whether or not they agree with them.
Your real estate agent has your best interest in mind at all times. They will provide input, guidance, and recommendations to assist you in making the best, biggest decision you’ll likely ever make.
The education and training real estate professionals receive are exactly the same across the province. Where they work doesn’t change the requirements of the real estate Rules and Regulations so you can be assured that a realtor working with a discount brokerage is trained to the same high level as at a traditional brokerage.
The difference between the two types of brokerages comes down to a financial one. At a discount brokerage, you can receive the same high level of service as at another brokerage, but at a much lower rate of commission.
Discount brokerages can save the seller thousands of dollars by reducing the amount of commission they take. This could be based on a percentage, or as a flat fee but either way, the seller will have some extra money in their pocket at the end of the transaction to use for any other purpose they choose.
Some discount brokerages also offer incentives to buyers. Since the buyer’s agent will receive their “normal” commission, they may offer a cashback percentage to the buyer as an incentive to hire the brokerage. This could be as much as 25 or 50% of the buyer agents’ commission depending on the level of service required from them.
Whichever way you decide to go, always do your homework, research the agent and company you are considering, and don’t be afraid to ask questions or read the fine print. You may just decide a discount brokerage is right for you.