Real estate commissions have stayed flat over the years, even though the legwork for agents has dramatically increased. Here’s the reason why.


It’s spring, the market is robust, and we’re seeing a ton of activity in the market. However, today I want to talk about something a little different: commission rates.

Now, I cannot directly discuss my commission rates, but I do have some general thoughts on them. The base commission rate that most agents in the capital district hasn’t changed in the 25 years I’ve been in the business. This is absolutely ridiculous. 

25 years ago, agents had to do a lot more legwork. I had a book to pull up printed information, write contracts by hand, and send someone out with a fancy camera to take pictures. Today? Everything has changed with digital technology. I can electronically send documents to sign, use digital photographs, and do things much more efficiently.

So, what’s the real reason commissions rates haven’t changed if things are so much easier for agents? It’s because of referral companies like that who take their fees on every single referral they give. Agents have to make up the difference, and that’s why the rates have remained flat instead of dropping. I get a tremendous amount of referrals from companies which then charge me 25% to 37% of the full commission. Since they do not add value, I am paying them for their national advertising.

“These referral companies ask for 25% to 37% of our commissions.”

Want to save money on your next transaction? Give us a call and skip the middleman. We’ll provide great value for a great price and I’d be happy to discuss the specifics with you. If you have any other questions about the real estate market in the meantime, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.