The Surviving Real Estate Agents

How many real estate agents is too many? At the peak of the 2000s housing bubble, the National Association of Realtors grew to 1.4 million members. Does the United States really need 1.4 million real estate agents?

Ron Peltier, chairman of a nationwide real estate brokerage, says no. According to Peltier, “we need probably 750,000 agents.” The membership of the National Association of Realtors has shrunk since its peak and currently has 1.1 million members, or surviving real estate agents.

While the markets have since recovered in many locations, the number of sales is still too low to support the number of active agents in the market at the peak of the housing bubble. There is just not enough work to go around.

However, many resourceful and hardworking agents have survived. People are always moving for work, family, retirement, and other reasons. No matter what the market is doing, there is always some demand for agents.

When the bubble burst, many agents found themselves working with a different type of client or on a different type of sale. Agents who had previously only worked on standard sales began working on foreclosures. Retail agents began working with investors.

Savvy agents have survived, but with 1.1 million agents, the industry may still have some contraction before reaching a steady base of agents.

Read the whole story at the Dallas Morning News.