By Michael Krisa

The modern-day discount broker is different from discount real estate models that were used in the past. In this video, Michael Krisa talks about why this wave of discount brokers may be here to stay. Here’s how to compete.

Watch the video or read more on the Agent Inner Circle website.

Michael Krisa has a unique style that demystifies video marketing and helps brokers and agents alike implement this powerful strategy into their marketing mix, using nothing more than their mobile devices. Michael received his real estate license in 1989 and is a licensed real estate broker, a syndicated columnist and a freelance internet marketing consultant. As a sought-after speaker and trainer, he is best known for helping to utilize video and video marketing in a way that actually works to make Realtors money! With over 400 interviews to his credit, Michael has become recognized as “That Interview Guy”. Send him an email.


  1. First “discount brokerage” implies a standard commission. This is untrue and anti-competitive.

    Second, we offer full service with high end photos, drone tours, 3d tours, full service BROKER to negotiate offers and much more for 3.5%

    I know many brokers at the big brands that do a discounted bear bones program for 3.5% so who is the real discounters? Lol!

    The trick to making great $$ and charging lower rates is VOLUME! How do you do volume? Leverage systems and tech and economy of scale.

    I feel bad for customers who overpay for inadequate services but such is life. They should do research and not hire their “friend” without making them compete.

    Our industry needs to innovate. New biz models in organized RE are not the enemy. They are the future. Embrace change!

    Good luck :)

  2. Well written! Do your research, lay out a plan, point out the gimmicks of discounters, be available on Cell phone, nite and day and weekends,report back to seller weekly, or each time you get a buyer call..
    Take all the calls personslly, not some assistant who has never been on the property, add small reno comments to assist seller.
    Each seller is a project, not a statistic!

  3. Had this conversation with my managers the other day. Older agents are stuck in the past, they previous discount brokerages failed, so will these they say. When you go for a listing appointment and show them how many thousands they’ll save despite having poor sales, they’ll still sign because they don’t know any better and both agents tell them what they want to hear. I always ask if they’re not paying as much, what part of the budget is being cut? Advertising? Agents still have fees to pay so if they’re not making anything, the budget will be cut somewhere otherwise they couldn’t do it. Try convincing any agent that’s been around 20 or 30 years this and they’ll tell you that you haven’t a clue what you’re talking about, they’ve always failed.

    • I think it simply implies that a good or service is being offered below the prevailing rate, which is a perfectly acceptable term. A prevailing rate simply affirms that in a competitive marketplace, a good or service has a particular price because all competitors operate in the same marketplace paying the same costs for rent, office supplies, advertising, etc.
      I think maybe what it does imply is that someone offering a discount is trying (usually vainly) to sell the same product for less, which is impossible in a competitive marketplace. I think it is safe to say the real estate marketplace is darn competitive. If you sell for less, you must offer less; there is no way around that. But the more important point for non-discount brokers to remember is if we sell for more, we better offer more.
      Hopefully I’m not breaking some rule here by saying there is an excellent book out there for us regular brokers, “Waging War on Real Estate’s Discounters”. I have no connection to this book.

  4. This may be one of the best videos or can I say, “live articles” on this subject. I found myself agreeing with every word you stated Michael. When I came in to real estate 50 years ago, I was told that the days of good money were over. A firm, here in Toronto, Abby Real Estate was advertising 3.5% full MLS listings. They had over 100 agents (on salary) and full page ads in the newspapers. So what did traditional brokerages do? We went on with our business, we just ignored them as there a lot of business to go around. And Abby – disappeared. Michael, 100%, they have popped up over and over and they have faded but this time, things are greatly different. This is an excellent video and I am going to share it. Great job!

    • I hope by providing this historical information I have answered your question:

      The answer in large part is in your USP so well-stated on your landing page arrived at when clicking on your name at your REM post.

      Personally I always had exceptional new client results and retention of past clients by using charts and graphs, and coloured magic marker highlighters, backed up by physical copies of all immediate area supporting listings, those on the market currently and both my bought and solds (and the solds I sold from other company’s MLS listings showed on the printouts that I, in fact did sell those particular properties.)

      Some of the things I mention set me apart from discounters as well as from other regular operators. When others were doing their discount system, I was getting bonused commissions, and 6-7 pts to share with co-op agents. My buyers and sellers easily enough could have elected to hire the discounters instead, or even other standard bearers. But they didn’t.

      I believe it isn’t wise to address what the discounters and or regular operators offer, promise, or report because unless you have particular insider information that you know to be factual, you likely wouldn’t know for certain what exactly they have told or promised the public vis a vis what they did or didn’t deliver. Concentrate on what you can endeavour to deliver backed up by provable stats.

      Using these materials, it was easy for a would-be buyer to draw conclusions relative to current market data, as to what price they might choose to offer on their purchase, comparing one property to another.

      And for sellers, they could see relationships of list to sale price at a glance, and see comparable property taxes, days on market and much other important information, as could would-be buyers.

      Sellers often thought they knew things about neighbourhood properties that they didn’t, and I had proof on paper to confirm my assertions. They were often surprised and raised their eyebrows when reviewing the materials I presented. I let them touch and feel and digest the material themselves and provided blank sticky notes so they could highlight any particular areas in question.

      Repeatedly when in competition I was told no one else interviewed had provided such comprehensive supporting information, making their decision to hire me, an easy one. It wasn’t difficult to see I had spent hours in preparing subject-specific information.

      Buyers and sellers always appreciated tangible supporting materials. But due to privacy of all involved, I never left my supporting materials with clients. Only promo materials made for the purpose got left. If any further discussion regarding the support materials was needed, I was always only a call away.

      I kept everything neat and clean and organized in plastic slip sheets in binders using tabs to separate segments. The buyers and sellers could touch and feel and look, and we could pull out specific slip sheets to narrow down information. As it were, would-be clients could use my information to create and build their own personal assessment of times, relative terms and conditions, and related costs to get them the most impactful positive result. I never needed to push people into agreeing to work with me. I told them to take their time and decide for themselves who was best equipped for the job (because it is a job), and to let me know their decision. Their response: “Where do we sign?”

      But then, I was one of those sometimes frowned upon, and criticized by colleagues for being a niche marketer. It was easy for me to devise what was needed individually. Being a (large x’s 3 areas) niche marketer made me the local neighbourhood expert and netted me typically an annual 24% market-share, working alone; my back up staff was admin-base. And this method meant I could easily prove my success and knowledge without having to say much at all. Pictures really are worth a thousand words, attached to related print materials. Supported by actual client personal testimonials sealed my presentation package.

      Combined with exceptional follow-up and follow-through that is so important and vital to success, (offer much – deliver more) which it seems you already do, this was my recipe for decades of a wonderfully fulfilling career. That, all combined with inter-agent networking was the secret to my personal success.

      The word on the street was that I was a no-nonsense REALTOR®. I was able to document everything I did for future use, as each transaction intertwined with the next. Personally I think one of the current industry downfalls is an effort to construct a fully paperless office; very good for some things, but not for presentation purposes always, perhaps.

      It seems that you already have what you need in place, perhaps. You could probably teach some colleagues a few things, if you yourselves actually wrote the promo on your page.

      Hopefully this answers your question, at least in part.

      Carolyne L 🍁

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