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By Kim Murphy
Murphy and Murphy Southern California Realty 

Real Estate Round-Up:

Cheap and easy isn't always the best


Last updated 4/27/2018 at 6:11am

The real estate profession is under attack. Slick ‘Johnny-Come-Latelies’ are jumping on the real estate train to make a quick buck.

Real estate professionals know these quick sale artists as “disruptors.” Every day I read about another real estate “disruptor.” These “disruptors” are essentially backed by Wall Street money. Wall Street is pouring billions into upstart tech-driven real estate companies in an attempt to influence how you do your real estate transactions. Are you feeling warm and fuzzy about this? I’m not, because the last time Wall Street got involved with real estate, our economy crashed (2008).

These new tech-driven companies look enticing because they use words like “streamlining the process” and “saving you money.” We all like the sound of that, but we’re not talking about buying yoga pants on Amazon Prime. We’re talking buying/selling homes – most people’s single most important investment of their lives.

With the "disruptors," you indeed do enter into a streamlined process, sometimes even done 100 percent online. You are assigned an “facilitator” (I see this as a sort of court-appointed attorney) and you’re off to the races. This person may or may not be an actual Realtor. Doesn’t that sound sketchy?

Sometimes they offer to buy your home – at a greatly reduced price – fix it up, help you purchase your next home and then sell your first home. Then after the purchase of your replacement home, apply those proceeds to pay off part or all of that new loan. They will act as “buyer” of your current home, “lender” on the purchase of your new home and then eventual “seller” of your original home. They get a bit of the financial gain every step along the way. It’s streamlined for sure. No disclosures or inspections to be done, but that alone is a bit sketchy, right?

So, you might be saying, “what’s the point here?” Don’t be fooled by the bright new shiny penny. Work with a local, experienced Realtor. One who will put you and your interests first. You wouldn’t want a court-appointed attorney representing your freedom – or your finances. Consider this, taken from the pre-amble of the Realtor’s Code of Ethics:

“Under all is the land. Upon its wise utilization and widely allocated ownership depend the survival and growth of free institutions and of our civilization. REALTORS® should recognize that the interests of the nation and its citizens require the highest and best use of the land and the widest distribution of land ownership. Such interests impose obligations beyond those of ordinary commerce. They impose grave social responsibility and a patriotic duty to which REALTORS® should dedicate themselves, and for which they should be diligent in preparing themselves. REALTORS®, therefore, are zealous to maintain and improve the standards of their calling and share with their fellow REALTORS® a common responsibility for its integrity and honor.” (abridged)

Seek out a highly qualified Realtor to negotiate your biggest assets. You owe it to yourself to hire the very best – not the cheapest or easiest.

Kim Murphy can be reached at or (760) 415-9292 or at 130 N Main Avenue, in Fallbrook. Her broker license is #01229921, and she is on the board of directors for the California Association of Realtors.


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