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Should Your Uber Driver Be Your Real Estate Agent?

March 2nd, 2017

I took an Uber to get downtown the other day.  It didn’t take long for the conversation to turn to real estate and how crazy home prices have become…ok I may have prompted the conversation.  I thought I was gaining a potential client, but sure enough…my Uber driver was thinking the same about me.  He too was an agent.  He only drove part time to make ends meet.

Let’s face it…everyone knows an agent…or ten.  There are currently 47,711 agents that are part of TREB (Toronto Real Estate Board).  When I started in 2007, there were 27000…and experienced agents were already grumbling there were too many agents.  (by the way, I’m using the word “agent” colloquially.  It’s meant to mean a sales representative or broker.)  Back in 2007 there were 93,193 transactions.  In 2016 there were 113,091 – a 21% increase in transactions.  Yet there was an increase of 76% in the number of agents.

If we were to look at rough numbers, we could say that currently each agent on average completes 2.4 deals per year (113,091/45000) But is that really the case?

Let’s look at some actual numbers*

  • 20% of registered agents sold 0 homes last year*
  • 52% of agents sold between 1 and 6 homes last year
  • 14% of agents sold between 7 and 12 homes
  • 10% of agents sold between 13 and 24 homes
  • 2.5% of agents sold between 25 and 50 homes
  • 0.4% of agents sold 50-99 homes
  • 61 agents (or 0.1%) sold more than 100 homes

Wow!! Look at that, 72% of agents have sold 6 or fewer homes in 2016.  How much experience can someone gain by doing so few transactions?  Is that who should be handling the purchase or sale of your home?  Real estate transactions are full of pitfalls…anything from bad negotiations to a poorly written contract…things can go wrong fast.

So who would you rather represent you?  An agent who “does” real estate on the side? Or an actual professional who has a beat on the market, continuously educates him or herself and will represent you effectively?

*Source: Toronto real estate agent-extraordinaire Melanie Piche

This post was written by David Ursino

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