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Storyteller5
04-19-2011, 08:42 PM
I'm just looking for a few details for my current WIP. It's mid-June in my story. Obviously this could be really different by area, but I don't need to be really specific. My realtor character is an average salesperson. I'm curious if anyone knows at that time of year, how many listings a realtor might carry in a decent selling market and how busy that time of year is. (I know it's when signs really start popping up where I live.) This isn't a defining characteristic of my character, but just details to add a bit.

alleycat
04-19-2011, 09:01 PM
Just a side comment. I'm not sure about Canada, but in the US the word "Realtor" is trademarked (and/or copyrighted; they have a trademarked R logo, so it might be both). You might be better off using real estate agent or whatever is typical and generic in Canada.

pangalactic
04-19-2011, 09:13 PM
I'm not an estate agent, but I know from having moved house several times over the last few years that the answer to you question will vary wildly depending on the kind of area your story is set in. For example, where I live it's much harder to find somewhere to rent in late summer (end of July to the beginning of September) because of how many universities there are in such a small area. No matter how many properties the agencies have on their books, they're snapped up almost instantly by students flooding into the area at that time of year. Conversely, the market is often flooded with empty properties around May-time, when a lot of the students move out of the area.

-Chris, not looking forward to having to move again in August

shadowwalker
04-19-2011, 09:38 PM
Definitely will depend on the area. It's been a few years since I was in real estate, but around here, agents don't bother with rentals; however, it seems that in California (and probably other areas), it's a standard part of their business.

Upper Midwest - spring and early summer are *the* selling times (who wants to look at houses in mid-winter?). The economy will affect sales, but not listings. Bad economy - more people having to sell (more listings), fewer available buyers. Right now, there's an inordinate number of houses for sale and the typical 3 month to sale time is forgotten. Many houses in my small town have been up for a couple years...

Storyteller5
04-19-2011, 10:27 PM
Some good points here. Thanks, keep those coming.

Good to know about realtor vs. real estate agent. Definitely an easy change.

Shadowwalker, agents don't handle rentals here either.

Karen Junker
04-19-2011, 10:37 PM
I was a Realtor for over 15 years, off and on. I worked in the Seattle metro area for part of that time and in smaller towns in Washington state for part of that time.

The markets are wildly different for different areas. In this state, the office is managed by a broker and the agents work for her/him. An agent can get his or her broker's license, but that does not make h/h the managing broker of the office. The office/broker owns the listings (even if the agent procured them), so if you move to a different office, the listings don't go with you.

Anyhow, you can PM me and I'll be happy to talk about my experiences with you--including showing a house with a boa constrictor on the shower rod!

pangalactic
04-20-2011, 04:00 AM
Interesting to see the differences. Over here the majority of estate agents handle both lettings and sales. It's very rare to rent without going through a letting agent, and they charge a silly amount of money for the privelege (for example, my current agents want 195+VAT each from my girlfriend and I when we move in August just to take credit checks and references, even though they did that when we moved in to this property last August). But they've got a chokehold on the market, so they (they being all agencies, not just this particularly heinous one) can charge what they like for whatever they like. If you don't want to be homeless, you'll pay it.