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Real Estate Referral Services Omaha

Real estate referral services Omaha

Thinking about using a referral service? Here are a few things, good and bad that you should know.

Rule # 1) When ever there is a middle man involved in a transaction, the price goes up. For example, you go to a department store (retailer) to buy a toaster. You pay $40. The retailer bought the toaster from a distributor or warehouse and probably paid around $20 for it. What would happen if you were able to bypass the middleman (retailer), and buy directly from the distributor? For most people that would be difficult as distributors and warehouses do not sell to the public. You couldn't just walk in, grab a toaster and buy it, but in the Internet age you don't have to walk in, just log in. The explosive growth in online shopping is the result of distributor like companies making their products available to savvy consumers online. They let you bypass the middleman (retailer).

Shopping for services is similar with one big difference. When you shop for services online and use a referral company you are adding a middleman rather than subtracting one. Referral companies for contractors, real estate agents, accountants etc seem to be cropping up everywhere.

Here is how it works, the referral company advertises to the service provider that it can provide leads or referrals to them for a percentage of the fee or cost of the repair job. Then it advertises to the public that it can find them a top quality service provider. The referral company acts as a middleman, connecting service provider with customer. The middleman often makes reviews, bios, and other information available to the customer to make shopping simple. It is convenient and efficient. The service is marketed to the consumer as being free to encourage them to use it (see Rule #1).

The service provider doesn't see it as free, because they have to pay a fee, often 25 - 33 percent, to be part of the network. How would you feel if you walked into work one day and had to cut your pay by 25% to do a particular job? Service providers would feel the same way. Often the rate charged to the referral customer is higher than they would charge their regular customers or the enthusiasm for the job is somewhat diminished. The really successful providers do not need a referral service, they already get a lot of business on their own.

So, when shopping for services, especially services in which you expect to pay more than a nominal amount for, or services that require a lot of expertise, take a little time and do some independent research. Most of the time you will be able to find a better deal on your own and you won't be limited to just those providers in the network.

Why do we mention it? I've had clients ask me, "Why aren't you a member of a real estate referral network?" I tell them that if we were, we wouldn't be able to provide our clients with the same quality of service and value that we offer today. We think it makes more sense to put the savings back into our client's pockets rather than in a middleman's.



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