Why You Need Real Estate Agents and Why You Don't Trust Them

Have a look at A and B in this picture.  They're obviously different colors: B is lighter than A, right?  How people react to that statement is the essence of why people need real estate agents, but it's also why they don't trust them.

Real Estate Agents as Salespeople: Whatever You Say

The way real estate compensation is structured means that the easiest way to earn money is to simplify completion of the deal.  Providing too much information to or disagreeing with a client makes the process more difficult and sometimes puts up major roadblocks between a salesperson and their commission.

If you believe A and B are different colors, a salesperson won't tell you otherwise.  It's easy because it avoids conflict and leverages what you think into helping the salesperson's goals.

Why People Don't Trust Real Estate Agents

There are times when experience and key facts are very important in decision-making.  In the picture, A and B are exactly the same color.

Think I'm trying to fool you?

That's another reason most real estate agents act like salespeople.  If you truly believe B is lighter than A, then saying otherwise could cost them credibility with you, initiate an "unnecessary" conflict, and bring about extra work in proving the point that A and B are the same color.

After all, selling someone on what they already believe is much easier than convincing someone to re-evaluate their position.

Why People Need Real Estate Agents

But that's not in your best interest.  In real estate lingo, agents have a fiduciary responsibility to their clients.  And the right way isn't always the easiest way.

Image of Illusion Proof

Imagine how much easier things could have been if this article were just two sentences, "Have a look at this picture.  Look how nice the colors are."  Then ask yourself whether you would have seen the "right" colors without someone who already knew the game by your side.

The Eyes See What They Want to See

The second illustration shows two solid gray bars which are the same color and strike through both tiles A and B, breaking the illusion.

The eyes expected the checkered tile pattern to be consistent across the entire image, and in so doing eliminated the effect the shadow had on the color of the tile!

In other words, the eyes didn't see the situation as it presented itself; they saw what they expected.

The Best Real Estate Agents Are Really Consultants

It's easy to say that in any real estate transaction, the client's best interest is paramount.  But sometimes pointing out things that may impede a sale but advance a client's goals is part of the job.

What clients really need when they hire a real estate agent is not someone who is a "closer" but someone who has the wherewithal needed to be a good consultant and Devil's Advocate. Take care not to choose someone who gets color blind to any color but green when you need a truthful opinion...