A letter to the editor, in yesterday’s Globe, lays out who has been responsible for the high price of real estate, as well as who is causing the slower real estate market.
The culprits? Real estate agents.
Following another car break-in at our old house in Revere and wishing to escape its crime, noise, high taxes, and costs, my wife began looking for another house last August. I wasn’t keen on the idea, because even back then I saw the market cooling and the interest rates rising. I was actually pushing to leave the state.
Greed, both by over-zealous brokers and homeowners, has driven up the prices of our region’s houses to artificial heights. And just like the tech market of the ’90s, reality hits. To lure customers into the market, many brokers prop up the value of houses, often showing comparisons from stronger markets to defend their claims, and then work with other brokers on buying at their inflated prices. The only winners are the brokers, who are paid far too much.
Unfortunately, there is zero oversight over real estate brokers in this state. It is the only profession that isn’t regulated and the licensing board has very little teeth. Only one region’s house market was down last quarter: the Northeast. What does that tell you? In a sinking market, people need to be a little more realistic when it comes to pricing their homes. Unfortunately, a broker is rarely the person to look to for an accurate assessment.
I guess I really don’t understand what the real estate industry is being accused of, and I don’t understand what we did wrong. As if there is a “we”.
(I guess the guy is mad that he priced his house too high, and it didn’t sell. Perhaps the “break-ins”, crimes, noise, and high-taxes had anything to do with it?)
Appraiser / blogger extraordinaire Jonathan J Miller has a few choice words for the letter writer:
I was reading a commentary in the Boston Globe this weekend called Brokers helping to drive up Northeast housing prices and that was the last straw for me. The whole idea of Big Brother and the Real Estate Industrial Complex (great name for a band) is simply ridiculous. The idea that real estate brokers are to blame for high housing prices is the classic â€œI am a victimâ€? whine and frankly I am getting tired of it for its sheer simplicity and lack of scope.
More: Brokers helping to drive up Northeast housing prices – Letter to the Editor, By David Bookbinder, The Boston Globe
Broker-Bashing Is Now PassÃ©: Out With The Old, In With The Experts (Until The Next Boom) – By Jonathan J. Miller, Matrix