MN Realtor Association Delivers Tough Love Beat Down to Members

by Alex Stenback on September 13, 2007

As a follow up to his seminal Oct 2006 Piece "Is it Time to Consider a Career Change," the Minnesota Association of Realtors Senior VP Chris Galler has delivered another Tough Love opus to its members, encouraging the membership to embrace a career change.  Spelling it out bleakly:

Until the industry sheds excess agent/broker inventory, agent
productivity will continue to fall. How many is too many? In my humble
opinion, we’re about 40% heavy…unless the median agent is closing 9 transactions a year, it is
difficult to understand how you can be considered a "professional"
possessing some special skill or knowledge about the real estate
transaction…If you take my "9 transactions a year" and calculate out the annual
earnings you will be very close to the state’s median hourly wage. Do
you think a consumer believes a person earning $35,000 a year is a

Leaving aside the fact that there might be a few professionals who’d take umbrage to the definition posed above, I can’t disagree entirely.  The entire real estate market suffers from excess capacity, and the residential mortgage lending business could stand a similar bloodletting, we’ve opined.

But we can’t let the association off that easy, so here’s the Irony Angle™ (emphasis ours):

Homes are not ATM machines and some of these owners thought that price inflation would continue to support their spending habits

Where or where in the whole wide world would homeowners ever get such a crazy idea that homes would always appreciate?  Oh, that’s right, the National Association of Realtors, who had assured us (via national media campaigns and talking points) that continued appreciation was a virtual sure thing. Funny that.
Tough Love []

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Ed Kohler September 13, 2007 at 6:47 pm

That seems strange. Isn’t the MN Realtor Association a member based organization, thus getting it’s revenue from . . . members?

Duane September 14, 2007 at 6:23 am

Ed, you’re right. He even admits to that and says they are getting ready for revenue drops:

“Fewer members mean less dues income for the Association. We’re prepared to lose that income if it means our client has shed excess agent/broker inventory and thereby increases the quality of service to our customers. The only way to stabilize falling incomes is to reduce membership size across the industry. The Mortgage and Title industries have already begun downsizing. It is time for agents and brokers to consider the same. Before you pay your 2008 Association dues, please think carefully about whether or not you should continue following this career path.”

Kinda like – hey we just sent you a bill for 2008, and we hope you don’t pay it!

Matt September 14, 2007 at 9:51 am

I have never met a realtor I would say adds any value. In fact, I usually dig down deeper, faster than they do. In my opinion, we can only be one or two years away from the provision of tools, such as online tools, which make it so easy to cut realtors out, that unless the realtor has some special skill (such as an architecture background), they’re useless.

derrik September 17, 2007 at 10:53 am

Anyone hiring? Funny really. Maybe they should look at a realtor resume, not just how many deals are closed, to make a judgement. A few of us do other real estate things…

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