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Part-timers should disclose their status

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Real Estate Professional | 01 Oct 2014, 11:39 AM Agree 1
The market is tightening, business is getting tougher and there are new calls to let consumers know if the agent they are planning on using is a full-time real estate agent or maybe a plumber, mechanic or pilot during their ‘day’ job.
  • Rick | 01 Oct 2014, 01:24 PM Agree 0
    What is full time anyways? Most days, I go the gym in the morning and stop by the office when I need to. I make a few prospect calls is the afternoon and meet most of my clients in the evening (since I work around their work schedule). Oh and I volunteer at my local legion twice a week during the day. Should I mention that I take 6 weeks off yearly when I go to Florida?
  • A concerned broker | 01 Oct 2014, 01:38 PM Agree 0
    Provincial and Federal Governments have no interest in creating a class of professional agents. This could lead to a monopoly. Therefore the more real estate agents (is it 40,000 in the GTA?) the better. We live in an age of oversupply of labour (Free Trade or open trade with low wage countries when it comes to manufacturing). In order to cloud the truth of the government's intent they have a multitude of training programs which in most cases are fit for Grade 5 Students. That gives the appearance of professionalism because every agent has to have these credit courses to keep his/her licence. Ask around in any office if you can find an agent who can write a legally binding contract without the assistance of a computer. Many agents don't even know the legal ramifications of the "small print" in the standard offer forms. The "Part Time Agent" status is a non-starter. Cops and Fireman have real estate licences. TTC drivers have real estate licenses. There are more and more agents who actually pay their customers to do business. New business models are being created as we speak and creating more professional real estate agents is not the main motivation for this creativity. There is always hope that those politicians who get it allow the industry to do the right thing and actually create more professional agents, but after decades in the business I am not hopeful. The professional real estate industry has created much wealth for consumers and a lot of tax income for governments. Yet the people in the industry have little political influence and the politicians with their army of bureacrats believe that this gives the government a free hand in playing with this "success monster" until something goes wrong. If this was not so serious it would actually be amusing.
  • Greed | 01 Oct 2014, 01:57 PM Agree 0
    Being an independent contractor I choose who I work for and give them my full attention. With that said I take care of my small client base with 100 % attention and satisfaction..I work on referrals. I see what you so called full timers are all about---I have spoke with many people about the care and dedication when you have 30 listings or so is that your too busy to ever return your clients phone calls and update them on the current status of their home. When you become too busy you forget what really matters... your client--not your money..I believe that is what it is all about..greed..
  • Valerie | 01 Oct 2014, 02:16 PM Agree 1
    I feel that if a realtor is part-time that "part-time" should have to be stated on all forms of advertising. Say under their name - "John Doe - part-time realtor" on their business card, extra. We are all about full disclosure, it is only fair to the consumer to be aware that they may be working with someone who only sells realestate part-time. They may choose to work with them OR not, but they need to know this and NOT be lead to believe that this realtor is on the job -"24/7".
  • David Zalepa | 01 Oct 2014, 02:19 PM Agree 1
    In my opinion it comes down to the brokers and managers in this industry. Brokers will take on any registrant that comes through their door. If the brokers would take a professional approach on their professional standards of sales representatives that alone would create a more professional industry. It begins at the bottom not the top.
  • Concerned consumer | 01 Oct 2014, 02:43 PM Agree 1
    I have had the misfortune of dealing with a "part-time" agent and am very disappointed to uncover this after listing my property with them. She claims that a property will sell itself and there is no need for any work on her part or any marketing of any sort - "if someone wants to buy your property, they will. They don't need to know anything about the features that are in it." Really??? Why don't I list my property myself then? Why do you bother getting a license?
    It would have been helpful to get full disclosure on what other priorities come before her commitment to us as our listing agent!
  • A FULL TIME REALTOR | 01 Oct 2014, 02:58 PM Agree 0
    You are absolutely ridiculous. The full-time agents I know are full time because they have the skills and dedication to their clients to make their living - and are not merely moonlighting on their regular job. Part-timers, in most cases, are not interested or willing to take the risks that a dedicated agent makes. You mention 30 listings? Not a chance! Agents are highly competitive in an overly easy and overpopulated industry - largely due to the part-timers scheming to fool their clients and not disclosing the FACTS of where they spend their time and expend their energy. You as a part-time agent (to generalize) don't 'need' your clients - you merely want the extra pocket money. A new sports car? Sure - it's just extra money, right? Your viewpoint is extremely narrow, needlessly argumentative and offensive. It is you who is the greedy one. That much should be clear to anyone reading your hateful and immature post. Get out of the business and make way for the people who support their families solely on their full-time real estate careers - make way for the full-time professionals who have dedicated their lives to their careers.
  • A FULLY DEDICATED FULL-TIME REALTOR | 01 Oct 2014, 03:01 PM Agree 0
    Fire her. I would.
  • | 01 Oct 2014, 03:15 PM Agree 1
    I don't think part time agents should exist. I think a transition period during the 2 year articling phase is ok, but after that it's full time or move on.
    It's not often that you here, oh I'm a part time Lawyer, or part time Doctor. It is a big reason for the decline of our industry as well as the decline of our overall value in the public's eyes.
  • George | 01 Oct 2014, 03:25 PM Agree 0
    Totally agree ! You couldn't explain it better.
  • George | 01 Oct 2014, 03:26 PM Agree 0
    Concerned Broker: Totally agree ! You couldn't explain it better.
  • Old Timer Musings | 01 Oct 2014, 06:23 PM Agree 0
    It's a 'can of worms' created when the push by our boards and associations made a grab for more 'dues' money. More bodies equals more dues. More dues equal more staff and higher wages. At one time only brokers could engage in other forms of employment that provided remuneration. Because there were few agents this wasn't a problem. People holding a salesman's license had to be exclusively working as real estate salespeople.
    There are so many licensed Realtors running around part time, picking a few deals a year and earning an income doing something else now that trying to control this would have a devastating effect on the income of all the r.e. jurisdictional parties including our boards. Our fees would have to be increased to pay for the elaborate and over staffed institutions we currently support.
    I wonder if the bar association or the association of notaries have the same problem? I don't think so. Could it be we are only deemed 'professional' in our own eyes? Or did we want to emulate our American friends where hairdressers, taxi drivers, waitresses, tour guides, bus drivers, etc. hold active real estate licenses? (bumped into two workers at MacDonalds and 7/11 and they told me they are both licensed Realtors. I had a 'big Gulp' but it wasn't the drink or the McNuggets.
  • aspadeisaspade | 01 Oct 2014, 10:18 PM Agree 0
    As long as brokerages are happy to accept anyone who pays their dues the system will remain the same. The model would have to change drastically to a real-world scenario where quotas are instituted and brokerages are accountable for how much real estate they sell - not the desk fees they collect. Any time you can buy your job, you are not joining a "profession". I question why a real estate agent needs a license at all. It's nothing more than a cash grab. Professional sales people operate at a very high level in all industries every day, and are accountable for results. I enjoyed a rewarding, lucrative and challenging 25 year career in sales working for corporations who demanded results quarter after quarter, and licenses, dues, desk fees and part-time sales reps were non-existent. Forcing people to disclose whether they are part-time agents or not misses the point completely.
  • Chris | 02 Oct 2014, 12:21 AM Agree 0
    Yes, PLEASE make it mandatory to disclose if you're part-time! Clients have the right to know if their Realtor has an invested interest in getting their home sold or if they don't care because they'll get a paycheque on Friday regardless. The problem is that when part-time Realtors act like this, it ruins the profession for the rest of us.
  • Samuel the Realtor | 02 Oct 2014, 01:40 AM Agree 0
    We need to look at the reason why a part timer is a part timer. We are jumping to conclusion without knowing the cause of it. I am one of those part timers. And I would love to become a full timer if I had the opportunity. but having to support a family needs a steady income. since I am relatively new (about 3 years).. and changed 2 brokerage it is not easy to just drop everything to become a full time realtor. Most of those who are comfortable with their full time, been doing it for quite some time. Also, remember advertising your name needs some spending as well, and we all know for fact.. the more and wildly you are advertised .. the more you will get calls. and I do expend a percentage of my income for advertisement.. but I need more.

    If I have the 20 - 30 listings a year.. I will drop my full time job at a heart beat. but I need to ensure the income.

    Remember, no one became who they are out of nothing... hard work, dedication and commitment is the key of success... it's not what time, when or where...
  • Samuel the realtor | 02 Oct 2014, 01:45 AM Agree 0
    Oh.. forgot one more thing.... instead of looking at the Part timers and their effect on the real estate world... maybe we should look first at the realtors who are willing to lower their commission to grab your listing. The one that you prepared and put all your "full time" into it. Or those realtors who are willing to list the property that you put your full time into researching for the best price and you lost the listing simply because they convinced the seller that their selling price is much higher than yours..... again, it's the principle not the cause.
  • Proud part-timer | 02 Oct 2014, 11:02 AM Agree 0
    The bottom line is that part time realtor's service their customers much better than full timers - end of story. I have been a part-timer for the past 21 years and had the privilege of working for Coldwell Banker, Sutton Group, ReMax and C21, I never had anyone question my integrity and my work ethic. I have enjoyed working in real estate and love what I do, my business is 80% referrals because I worked by the rules of the industry and great customer service was all I gave and that is all that matters. But sadly, I have heard many complaints from my clients and some prospects about the so called "full time agents" the one's who drive fancy cars, build bogus teams, put out misleading ad's, and who often give the industry a not so good reputation. And for all you full time agents who oppose part time agents, don't kid yourself. If you find it hard to compete with us and handle this pressure, you should leave the industry because obviously you don't fit the profile of a great realtor.
  • Part Timer in a career transition | 02 Oct 2014, 11:15 AM Agree 0
    Part timer in a career transition I have been doing real estate with a full time dedication for the last six years.
    Working with another broker as a team this gave me the opportunity to insure a full time service to all my clients.
    The transition was to be short (1 year) and I was ready to embrace working full time as a real estate broker. The economical period in which I started was not the best and the income left after all the expenses paid were slim to none. I never saw this as extra spending money but it was clear I could not have lived on this salary! This is why I did not quit my job as a restaurant manager. So lets not say that part timers are greedy and should make way ! I know my services are very profesionnal and I do all my showwings without ever using a lock box! This is not what fulltime established brokers are doing. Some full timers even hire non brokers to open doors for them!

    Becoming a good broker takes maturity and this comes with experience. I am now after six years of experience a mature broker and
    my goal is to become a fulltimer as soon as I can. But in the meantime nobody can say that my clients are not getting the services they have chosen me for!
  • Sharon | 02 Oct 2014, 11:43 AM Agree 0
    I fully Agree that if a Consumer is hiring a realtor to work for them to sell or buy the BIGGEST INVESTMENT in their life, that the consumer
    has the right to know if they are hiring a part-time or Full-time Realtor's to do the job!
    This is called DISCLOSURE and it is MISLEADING by not disclosing.

    I find that Part-time realtor's buy their business so to speak ==offer discount commission to get a listing!

    Ever call a part-time realtor to ask a question regarding a consumers property and it takes them 8 hours to get back to you?
    Or a purchaser would like to present a offer right away but the selling realtor is no where to be found!

    Taking courses in one thing, but having the experience that you receive as a full-time realtor is price-less!!
    It teaches us on a daily basic how to better serve and represent the consumer. It also teaches us how to better negotiate and represent a client in a offer. These are skills missing in a Part-time realtor and as a result the consumer pays the price in different ways! ie by over paying for a home or losing out!

    I have recently seen a example where a purchaser paid $30,000 too much for a home simply because the agent was part-time and did not do his research!! ...He could not be bother...He was excited that he had a client was willing to pay close to a asking price (no other offers since the home was over priced) and he did not have to do much work and knew he had a $15,000 Plus commission cheque waiting for him at the end of the day!!

    Just last night I had a pass client call me that wanted to know who to complain to because he lost out of a Investment deal--He was upset that he has used a realtor that did not know what she was doing. (she was part-time)

    I also just recently sold a home -the selling realtor was part-time ( full-time teacher) . Approx. two weeks after the deal was Firm, he comes back to me wanting to add additional clauses into the offer!! He obviously has no clue what he is doing and Really upset my client to the point of not wanting to sell to his client involved. It caused a lot of unnecessary stress.

    That's the difference!! The Consumer Pays!! It misses up the market value and is why Realtor's get a bad name out there!


    Many people are now working out of their home and have the flexibility through out the day to do some home searching or selling.

    The question is, should a consumer pay Full Commission -$$$$ when dealing with a Part-time Realtor -receiving Part-time knowledge and representing them part-time, Unknowingly?
  • Sharon | 02 Oct 2014, 11:52 AM Agree 0
    Suggested Solution--Why not make it mandatory for Part-Timer Realtor's to work under Full-Time Realtor's?
    Everyone wins!!:)
  • Greed | 03 Oct 2014, 08:48 AM Agree 0
    Dear proud part timer; You are right on the money; Ask a full timer to produce a cap rate on a commercial building; They are always off the mark because they fail to add hidden expenses that even the real estate course doesn't teach...I have been buying and selling real estate for 30 years without a license (now I have one)and most of the full timers are incompetent. My investors want a return on their equity put forth in a down payment--who cares what the building has as income--its the expenses they lie about. I treat my clients and there money like my own and want the best deal for them all the time. Maybe the full timers should step down as they always overprice just to get the listing and then in 30 days a price drop. Who's lying to their clients?
  • Rocketman | 03 Oct 2014, 05:26 PM Agree 0
    Back in 1992-93 I started as a part timer and I worked a seasonal job for 5 months a year driving a concrete truck. I would take cell phone calls from my clients as I was driving down the road(wouldn't take calls driving now) and calls while pouring concrete at construction sites. I literally would change from my overalls around 6 p.m. into a suit in the lunchroom and go to the office and work throughout the evening. I sold 18 homes my first year not bad for a part timer. After a couple of seasons of that I backed off gradually and by the fall of 1995 I worked full time as a Realtor for the next 13 years. Since 2009 I am a part timer again and basically I keep my licence current and other than manage my rental property's I don't sell houses anymore. I have no problem with part timers and never did even when I worked full time during those years. Working the two jobs in the beginning actually taught me to focus on the important things and not fiddle around. There are people who are consultants in many types of professional industry's. I suspect many of you who are now arguing to get rid of the part timers will switch sides later when you are in a financial position to be part time and realize you didn't know what you were talking about as you were just arguing to get a bigger piece of the pie for yourself. I can say I have had the same attitude from day 1 that part timers are fine and this is the beauty of being in the business world as self employed. Maybe this article will now inspire me and light a fire within me to go out and sell a few houses. Believe me full timers a part timer should be the least of your concerns. Just curious I wonder if there are any stats out there that show what percentage of Realtors being sued are part timers to full timers. I am a male with no kids but I
    think being a housewife who needs to tend to her family/kids Real Estate is a great job for them. There you are full timers go after the part time house wives now.
  • Kevin | 03 Oct 2014, 09:53 PM Agree 0
    I work in a partnership with a fellow Paramedic. We have scheduled our hours in the ambulance to accommodate al of our clients, so that if one of us is working to save lives the other is available to service our clients. It works well for both us and or clients. Those agents who would otherwise disadvantaged their clients using another agent in their office when they are on vacation, sick, or otherwise unavailable enlist someone to take their calls and pretend to know what is required to fulfill their clients needs. Communication and knowledge of everyone we are involved with is the basis which we have used to establish our business model and it benefits everyone we deal with.
  • Jill | 04 Oct 2014, 09:17 AM Agree 0
    We are not debating if either part time or full time are better agents, we are debating the right that a consumer has to know who he is dealing with, there is a good fit for everyone out there, but it is the clients decision. It is not for us to suggest that a part time agent is good or bad at his or her job, this is too large a generalization, it is our job to ensure we develop the best possible profession and doing what is right and ethical for our consumers; right? So, lets stop bickering, this is all about what is right and good and that is up to each client to decide with full disclosure. I am educated, and I am full time, but if circumstances changed in my life and I had to do it part time, I would still bring my drive, ethics and professionalism to my part time role. I think this argument is about disclosure and I also think that continuous education is required to continue to foster the best possible outcomes for everyone, including part time agents.
  • Geoff | 08 Oct 2014, 04:11 PM Agree 0
    Bump up the local board fees to a min of a membership annual fee of $ 12,000 per year and you will see a drop in Membership by a min of 40 % in my area of Calgary, Alberta. You will also see the brokerages that service the part-time Realtors out of business. This will segregate the Part timers and full time agents debate and will result in how serious the membership take their Business to service their clients. I have to ask the Question to those members who are in favor of part time Agents.
    Q. You are a consumer and looking for a home in a "hot" Real Estate Market where homes are selling within 24 hrs. If you find out after the fact the agent that you trusted to work for you. As your agent was unavailable that day as he/she was working in their Full-time job ??
    Ask yourself the Question. If you were a consumer in the market to buy or Sell. Q. Would you go to a part - time Lawyer to represent you. Would you go to a part - time Surgeon for a heart transplant ??
    The Provincial local agencies RECA in my province will not abolish the part - timers as it has been raised in the past as it makes them more $$$ for more membership. However the local boards can implement higher fees and their income would not be affected and actually raise their annual income that they require with staff etc ..........
    I'm looking forward to all the flak from the Members who disagree with me.
    At the end of the day you get what you pay for and the consumer hopefully will be smarter enough to decide who they "hire" as their agent.
  • TM | 10 Oct 2014, 10:36 AM Agree 0
    I am a full time real estate professional...have been for 28 yrs now. However, I own 3 businesses, have 38 staff and still sell. I handle all my own listings, and answer my calls. Am I part time? or am I full time. Pretty hard to quantify. I have agents in my company that have other jobs. One in particular works in a hospital setting 2 nights a week. Maybe not enough to pay the bills but certainly a great environment for meeting people and networking for his other mostly full time job of selling. Is that part time? Its pretty much a given, based on TREB statistics, that 20% are doing 80% of the business. So, really all that matters is that you know your stuff, are diligent working with your clients, and if you sell more than 2 houses per year, you're doing better than 20,000 of the 40,000 agents on TREB.
  • farid | 13 Oct 2014, 09:11 AM Agree 0
    At This time you have to be aggressive successful Realtor does not look what other Realtor are doing part time or full time we have to walk with the technology and as the old timer say whit having 5 or 10 sack of rice you never call your self merchandise so take it easy and relax
    and let every one play the game.
  • Sanjay B. | 15 Oct 2014, 04:37 PM Agree 0
    Mr. Farid, It will help more if as a consumer you write your voice of concern to RECO also and encourage others to do so. Perhaps, they will hear it at one point of time, especially if something concerning consumers. After all their role and existence is to protect consumers like you.
  • Sanjay B. | 15 Oct 2014, 04:48 PM Agree 0
    Sorry my above comments was in response to a "Concerned Consumer" above and not to Mr. Farid. Thanks
  • Rod Doris is my REAL name | 15 Oct 2014, 07:45 PM Agree 0
    Part-time, Full-time, does it matter? Maybe! When I started in '89 there was talk of making designations of P/T, F/T, but it was discriminatory then, and unfortunately, it still is now! Everyone one wants an extra piece of the commission pie, and some are pointing fingers at the other side to justify why it should be so. I am not for, nor am I against it, but, whichever one you choose to be; you better be the "best" at being a professional REALTOR who puts their customer first before the almighty commission! Knowledge of the business, good ethics, education, keeping up with the technology, and keeping up with the industry is as equally important as trying to earn your commission. For me after 25 years, most of which are full-time, I get to choose whom I would like to work with. I know I can't win them all, and I don't want it all. So, next is my motto! Lastly, I am in it for the long haul, and I confidently know that I will outlast most agents who are just in it for the short term gain. If not RECO; it will be the expenses that force the ones that can't make a successful run at it. The Million Dollar Question is: What is your definition of Full-time, or Part-time? How many transactions?
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