UncategorizedBrokers Are Worth What They Get Paid

Brokers are on edge following the National Association of Realtors’ settlement which can dramatically impact the way people buy and sell homes and the commission structure for buyer brokers. 

Real estate brokers work on a commission basis, meaning they only earn their fee upon the successful closing of a transaction. This contingency-based pay structure underscores the significant risk brokers take on, as they could potentially invest hours of work without any guarantee of payment.

Brokers’ Workload and Compensation

The amount of groundwork is extensive and often underappreciated for buyers’ agents. 

Brokers navigate countless properties, guide clients through numerous open houses, manage complex negotiations, and handle the vast amount of paperwork involved in preparing and finalizing offers. They also coordinate inspections and attend final walkthroughs to make sure everything is in order before the deal closes. 

Despite these efforts, if a transaction does not close, they do not get paid.

Comparing Broker and Attorney Fees

Analysis suggests that a buyer’s broker’s hourly wage might come down to as little as 69 cents when accounting for all the unpaid labor involved in deals that don’t pan out. 

This figure starkly highlights the broker’s financial vulnerabilities and the inequity of their compensation compared to the sheer volume of work they perform. By comparison, attorneys typically charge by the hour or have a flat fee for services, ensuring they are compensated for every hour worked, regardless of the transaction’s outcome. This model provides a financial safety net that brokers do not enjoy.

The Value of a Broker in the Digital Age

Moreover, the landscape of real estate is changing with the rise of technology. 

Potential buyers have the tools to find properties online, and some might consider bypassing brokers altogether. However, this overlooks the intrinsic value brokers offer, which extends far beyond just locating a property. They bring expertise in negotiation, understanding of the legal and procedural nuances, and a personal touch that no digital platform can replicate.

Advocacy and Ethical Standards

Brokers also advocate for their clients in ways that are not immediately visible but are crucial to the transaction’s success. 

From confirming that ethical and legal standards are met, such as preventing discriminatory practices, to addressing complex situations that often arise in real estate deals, brokers provide irreplaceable guidance that protects their clients’ interests.

It is crucial for buyers to recognize the comprehensive role brokers play in affirming transactions are not only successful but also fair. Their expertise often saves clients from potential pitfalls that could cost much more in the long run. In this context, it’s clear that brokers earn every cent of their commission, reflecting their commitment and the critical support they provide in every real estate transaction.

The Minchella & Associates Difference


With over 40 years of experience in Illinois real estate law, Erica Minchella has represented thousands of home sellers and buyers, landlords, and commercial and investment property owners. For more information, schedule a consultation today.

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