The most unique feature of a real estate license is having people give you money to buy a house. Getting a commission check and an investment property all in a single close is a lot of fun! If real estate is your career, chances are you have owned rental property. And, why not?
The agent is basically armed with so much statistical data, it’s almost like insider information. Knowing the area’s rental costs and trends overtime makes the buying decision a simple math problem. Have the seller lower his price. Have the seller pay the closing costs. Have the seller cut you a big commission check. Anything else? Have the seller do all the repairs? Simply put, a real estate license can put you in a situation that you otherwise could never experience.
We point this out because a rental property is an agent’s business. An agent’s Broker has nothing to do with it and is NOT involved. Given that, agents should never pay commission or offer any split to a Brokerage simply because of their sales affiliation. Brokers who cheese a couple hundred bucks off an agent’s rental commission are either border criminal or worse, a national franchise.
Wynd Realty is a service provider. We are NOT a “partner” to our agents. We are enablers—that’s it. We enable everybody the same. If an agent becomes wildly successful, good for them. But, it doesn’t mean the Broker gets to ride along. Brokers should encourage agents, not take from them.
This brings us to the second most unique feature of a real estate license. Getting paid to hook people up. Being a referral agent is some of the most absurdly easy money anyone can make.
Bummer, your friends are moving out of State. But, if you have a real estate license, might as well get paid! Go to Zillow, do a few Google searches and within an hour you will have a handful of agents for your friends to use. Get referral agreements in place. Five months later, after your friends have moved into their new home, you get a commission check for 25% of the action. It’s beautiful. Demonstrating again, just how powerful a real estate license can be.
While a rental property is an agent’s business. Referrals are an agent’s, "personal" business. Referrals are most often for good friends, family or at least those well known. Any way you look at it, it’s a personal relationship. Brokers who wedge themselves into an agent’s personal business are really crossing a bridge too far. Why would a Broker deserve compensation off someone’s personal relationship?
Agents should tell their Brokers they are NO longer willing to share in any referral income. And if the Broker isn’t cool with that—the agent should leave them. Too dramatic? Follow the money.
Unlike rentals that deal in hundreds of dollars, referral commission checks can be several thousands of dollars. Agents don’t leave Brokers because they stole $75 off their last rental. They should leave Brokers when they take $1K off the top of a $4K referral. That’s robbery! Totally unjustified.
Wynd Realty doesn’t believe in taking any money from rentals or referrals. We process those checks at 100%. The only reason these checks must run through our Brokerage is so they can be accounted for to the IRS. Sadly, referral income isn’t tax-free income.
Wynd Realty began with the philosophy of never charging an agent for either a rental or referral. It “felt” like the wrong thing to do. That feeling over the last 12 years, has saved Atlanta-area agents tens of thousands of dollars. And that feels good too. So given that, we will continue to stand proud as the only real estate Brokerage in Atlanta promoting FREE rentals and referrals.