A letter from our Co-Founder and CEO Thomas Ma

The Battle Cry for Real Estate’s Future

In the wake of the Sitzer-Burnett verdict, where a jury found major real estate entities in breach of trust, it is a critical juncture for us, the individual real estate agents, to assert our value. The allegations have cast a shadow upon our profession. However, amid this turmoil, our commitment to our clients and the integrity of our service remains undeterred. This is the time to stand united, to amplify the voice of each dedicated agent who plays a crucial role in guiding, educating, and empowering home buyers and sellers. Our mission is to demonstrate the worth we bring to every transaction. As we navigate through the repercussions, let us come together to showcase the honor, expertise, and genuine care that define our profession.

Preserving Our Unique American Real Estate Model

The United States boasts a unique real estate model that stands apart from other countries, one where proper separate representation is not just a formality but a cornerstone of the transaction process. Here, the seller’s agent plays a pivotal role in the collection and distribution of commissions to the buyer’s agent, ensuring that each party’s interests are served. This method has long been the bedrock of a fair and efficient market, reflecting a balance that benefits all parties involved in a real estate transaction.

The Crossroads of Change: A Vision of Real Estate’s Possible Future

We are at the precipice of a dramatic transformation that could devalue the irreplaceable expertise and dedication of real estate professionals. If we do not take action now, the likely outcome will be compensation decoupling, with the following repercussions:

  • A race to the bottom in agents fees to compete for clients.
  • Contrary to expectations, a smaller pie will not mean fewer agents; it will instead drive away the skilled and dedicated, triggering an influx of lower-quality agents.
  • This will not refine our industry but rather dilute its standards.
  • In a defensive move, agents and brokerages may begin to restrict public access to their listings, causing a significant setback in market transparency.
  • Sellers may move away from the traditional exclusive model in favor of open listings, seeking perceived advantages in broader exposure.
  • Reliance on paid advertisements on portals may become the norm for brokerages and agents, driving up costs and focusing efforts away from direct service.
  • This would grant these platforms pricing power and allow them to monopolize market visibility.
  • The competitive landscape for brokerages will narrow, with larger brokerages consolidating power. Small brokerages will struggle to compete, potentially leading to a decline in their numbers and diminishing consumer choice.
  • The fee paid by consumers will be disproportionately allocated to advertisement-based portals, reducing the actual service received and draining resources away from where they are truly needed.

These changes, sequentially unfolding, will reshape our industry into a shadow of its current self, less diverse, less competitive, and less consumer-focused.

Launching The #AgentsForAgents Campaign

As the concept of “compensation decoupling” gains traction, we will not merely observe from the sidelines. Instead, we are calling for a nationwide conversation, encouraging agents to voice their concerns and fight for the future of our real estate industry.
 We believe in Agents. Because we are agents too.

#AgentsForAgents believes that: 

  • We Are Essential: Agents are not just a part of the real estate transaction; we are the backbone, providing irreplaceable expertise and guidance.
  • We Should Control Our Destiny: Our listings, our leads. We advocate for an environment where agents are empowered by technology, not vice versa.
  • We Challenge the Giants: Portals like Zillow and Redfin envision a future without us. We envision a future where our role is central and indispensable.
  • We Embrace Change Through Unity: Only through open discussion can we drive reforms that preserve the integrity and prosperity of our industry.

We call on agents to take the following actions: 

  • Showcase your support by adopting the #AgentsForAgents banner on your  Real Messenger profile and other social profiles.
  • Share your story: Post testimonials about the importance of agent’s role, using the campaign hashtag to voice out as a community.

Real Messenger Represents A New Paradigm in Agent Empowerment 

I started Real Messenger to not just be a platform; but a revolution in the real estate industry, crafted with the foresight that the true value of an agent should never be sidelined. We have envisioned and built a space where agents are not just part of the system but are the very architects of their success. This represents a paradigm shift in how real estate agents interact, transact, and advocate for their profession.

In an era where technology often dictates terms, Real Messenger puts the power back in the hands of those who make the industry tick: the agents themselves. It’s a platform where community and innovation intersect, empowering agents with direct communication, comprehensive listing features, and a global network—ensuring they stay connected and ahead in a rapidly evolving marketplace. Real Messenger isn’t just supporting agents; it’s transforming their role in the digital age.

We as agents are witnessing the very fabric of our industry under attack. It is not a time for complacency—it is a time for unity and resilience. Join #AgentsForAgents to make your voice heard today.

– Thomas Ma CEO and Co-Founder of Real Messenger

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