The Brad Weisman Show

Realtor vs Broker - Demystifying the Two Roles

June 22, 2023 Brad Weisman, Realtor
Realtor vs Broker - Demystifying the Two Roles
The Brad Weisman Show
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The Brad Weisman Show
Realtor vs Broker - Demystifying the Two Roles
Jun 22, 2023
Brad Weisman, Realtor

Hi This is Brad Weisman - Click Here to Send Me a Text Message

Ever wondered what the difference is between a Broker and a Realtor? Join us for an insightful conversation with our guest, Mark Chaknos, the broker of record for Keller Williams Platinum Realty, who clears up the confusion on this topic. Mark shares his personal journey to becoming a broker and highlights the importance of a broker's role in managing a real estate office, dealing with potential legal issues, and the problem-solving skills it demands.

But that's not all! We also tackle the crucial topic of seller's disclosure in real estate, with Mark emphasizing the importance of property disclosure and the potential consequences of not disclosing information when selling a house. Discover how you can maximize your home value through improvements like carpet replacement, painting, and finishing a basement. Plus, we explore the affordability of homes in Berks County and why Homes Priced UNDER $500,000 go quickly in the area! Don't miss out on these valuable nuggets of real estate wisdom shared by Mark Chaknos.
#realestateandyoupodcast #bradweisman #Broker #realestateagent #realtor

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Welcome to The Brad Weisman Show (formerly known as Real Estate and YOU), where we dive into the world of real estate, real life, and everything in between with your host, Brad Weisman! 🎙️ Join us for candid conversations, laughter, and a fresh take on the real world. Get ready to explore the ups and downs of life with a side of humor. From property to personality, we've got it all covered. Tune in, laugh along, and let's get real! 🏡🌟 #TheBradWeismanShow #RealEstateRealLife #realestateandyou

Credits - The music for my podcast was written and performed by Jeff Miller.

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Hi This is Brad Weisman - Click Here to Send Me a Text Message

Ever wondered what the difference is between a Broker and a Realtor? Join us for an insightful conversation with our guest, Mark Chaknos, the broker of record for Keller Williams Platinum Realty, who clears up the confusion on this topic. Mark shares his personal journey to becoming a broker and highlights the importance of a broker's role in managing a real estate office, dealing with potential legal issues, and the problem-solving skills it demands.

But that's not all! We also tackle the crucial topic of seller's disclosure in real estate, with Mark emphasizing the importance of property disclosure and the potential consequences of not disclosing information when selling a house. Discover how you can maximize your home value through improvements like carpet replacement, painting, and finishing a basement. Plus, we explore the affordability of homes in Berks County and why Homes Priced UNDER $500,000 go quickly in the area! Don't miss out on these valuable nuggets of real estate wisdom shared by Mark Chaknos.
#realestateandyoupodcast #bradweisman #Broker #realestateagent #realtor

---
Welcome to The Brad Weisman Show (formerly known as Real Estate and YOU), where we dive into the world of real estate, real life, and everything in between with your host, Brad Weisman! 🎙️ Join us for candid conversations, laughter, and a fresh take on the real world. Get ready to explore the ups and downs of life with a side of humor. From property to personality, we've got it all covered. Tune in, laugh along, and let's get real! 🏡🌟 #TheBradWeismanShow #RealEstateRealLife #realestateandyou

Credits - The music for my podcast was written and performed by Jeff Miller.

Brad Weisman:

Hello, this is Brad Wiseman. You'll listen to Real Estate and You. We are back in the studio and we have a special guest here. This is gonna be an interesting show, because we just threw this together in about I'm gonna say 30 seconds, something like that, which is kind of how all the shows end up going. Right, hugo, that's right.

Brad Weisman:

That's right. Yeah, so we got Mark Chaknas. He's the broker of record for Kelly Williams Platinum Realty, of course, and we brought him in here because there's a lot of question or a lot of misconception, a lot of confusion around what the hell is a broker.

Mark Chaknos:

So I'm here to set the record straight. You're here to set the record straight.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, i'm having a hard time getting this microphone set right today, so now we're good. Yeah, like everybody says, oh broker, they'll just call you a broker sometimes and you're not. You are a broker, correct, and we can kind of explain what's the difference between a broker and a realtor. What did you do to get this super cool title?

Mark Chaknos:

So you know, having a broker's license is like, maybe equivalent to getting a master's in something like that. It's not to that extent of education, although it is a pretty significant, absolutely added layer of education, as you know a little bit as you're going through some of these classes. But you acquire a broker's license to do really one of three things You want to own your own brokerage, you want to manage a brokerage or you want to get more involved with property management.

Mark Chaknos:

I'd say Yeah, at the basic real estate level, when you get your license you can do some property management. but if you really want to get more involved with it, you have to get your broker's license. Gotcha And goes along with. obviously, you know managing an office as well. When you start up, you know your own company and you have your broker's license. then you have to have a broker of record, and that's what I am for, keller Williams.

Brad Weisman:

Right Now can you be a broker of record for?

Mark Chaknos:

other companies In Pennsylvania. yes, you can. You can not be an agent for multiple companies in the same state, but yes, i could be the broker for multiple companies. Yeah, because.

Brad Weisman:

I've seen other companies in the area that the broker you know the other companies that we have in our area here the broker is not even in the office, Right Like it's a broker somewhere else, and they're the broker for maybe many of the franchise's offices Exactly. So it's an interesting situation there, It is.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, and we have like, for example, we have our referral company, which is like really just a side entity, but it is a brokerage. I have to be the broker of record for that. So those are agents that are, you know, licensed in escrow but can be referral agents to agents that are fully actively licensed, right? So I am a broker for record for two companies. Two companies, yeah.

Brad Weisman:

Amazing. So when? what kind of studying? I mean, how much time did this take to get this? I mean, i've been a realtor for 30 years And I think what they should do is they should have a 30 year and you get the broker, maybe America.

Mark Chaknos:

You should just get it. You should just get, like see exactly.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, it's something different because I'm going through the classes now. Yeah, and it gives you a whole new respect for what you had to learn in order to become, or to take the test to become, a broker. Sure, it's a lot of schooling, yeah.

Mark Chaknos:

So technically you need only three years of experience. but it is tied to production Right. So you have to have, I believe, a hundred sides, which is either a buyer or a seller, or a lease.

Brad Weisman:

So you have to add that all up, which is actually pretty much in the first in three years, and that's what it is. If somebody's new, yeah, if somebody's new.

Mark Chaknos:

You're probably not doing a hundred sides of first three years. Maybe you are, yeah, but you know, locally speaking I would say it's uncommon. So I would say about year five actually in my career is when I got my broker's license.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, Yeah, i know, as soon after you got your license, you got your broker's license, which is which is not. I don't think it's as common. I think a lot of times people are in 10, maybe 12 years or so and then decided to do it. Or the slow guy here like me Yeah, i'm in 30 years.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, i think I'm ready to get that master's degree in real estate, still getting through those classes. I'll tell you what it's a pain in the butt It really is. It's the law, it's all the different things that you have to learn, but it's all stuff that keeps us out of trouble Yeah, keeps us out of lawsuits and things like that. Shouldn't say keeps us out, reduces the possibility. Reduces the risk and liability, because, as a broker, you know very well that we there's liability, and that's something that you deal with.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, so that's really the main objective as a broker of record of a company is to kind of supervise all the agents and have an oversight of all the deals that are happening between our buyers and sellers. So a lot of what I do on a day-to-day basis is just problem solving. Yeah, whether it's something that occurred within the transaction or on an agreement contract, what have you. But that's pretty much what I do every day of the week.

Brad Weisman:

And then you also get sometimes where people decide that they're going to go after either A the buyer, the seller, the agent, whoever, or everybody, sure, and then you have to deal with that. Yeah, the notices from the courts come to you.

Mark Chaknos:

They do They do? I mean our Pennsylvania agreements of sale have a mediation process in line first before someone takes it right to court. You could go straight to court, but oftentimes the mediation process is the best first available option. But yeah, the buck kind of stops me when it comes to that kind of thing. So I get the lawsuits landed on my desk. That's good, And then I have to deal with the attorney.

Brad Weisman:

Susan and I are very happy about that, actually, that you get those letters and not us.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, Well, you know, oftentimes you know we're getting them dropped off by a sheriff. Yes, not fun.

Brad Weisman:

Not a fun, nobody ever wants to see that coming to the office?

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, exactly, getting served.

Brad Weisman:

We know what it is And we're not called we're not when we say getting served, it's not a Vokantan. Just so you know we're talking about.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, nasty paperwork And for the general viewership out there they should know like these. it's a very limited case is like I could count on the on my one hand, how many we receive throughout the year, and not all of them to go to court. No, you know, a lot of times it's getting settled outside of court or it's something that probably shouldn't have been proposed in the first place, but we also have insurances and things like that in place, so, yeah, it's.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, we don't want to make it sound like it happens a lot for our, for our company here. It does not, and a lot of that's you setting up the parameters for what we call compliance. I mean you, you set up what you feel is the right, are the right forms that need to be signed and done. You also have it set up that basically, as realtors, as agents in this company and I'm including myself I have to live by this too, that if it's not in the file, i don't get my commission check Correct. So you know, i think there's a lot of companies out there that don't do that, that kind of fly more the seat of the pants, and there doesn't work out so well.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, we're pretty strict here on compliance, but for good reason, because it really limits them and there's no number of lawsuits that could potentially come in. I mean, i'm probably toughest on our seller's property disclosure. I think any attorney out there would say you know, that's the one thing. They kind of look at first outside of the agreement, in terms of what was on there, what wasn't, because oftentimes when these lawsuits come about it's about misrepresentation or non-disclosure. It could be something within the contract itself, but a lot of times it's a problem that accrues, arose after the fact, and then they kind of look to that document to see okay, what did the seller tell you at that time And was it accurate, was it truthful or did they misrepresent?

Brad Weisman:

So no water in the basement and first three inches of rain. There's four foot of water in the basement.

Mark Chaknos:

That's right. That's a common one. That's a problem. Yeah, or?

Brad Weisman:

I love, I love small trickle, small trickle during heavy rain.

Mark Chaknos:

Minor rainstorm in 2015. Yeah, only had a drop in the basement Only happened during hurricane.

Brad Weisman:

So you get, and we get like a little bit of mist outside in the four foot of water in the basement. That's a problem, yeah, but that happens And that's why we tell people, I tell people all the time, my seller clients, you know, when in doubt, disclose, if you're, if you're thinking about it, mm, hmm, disclose it 100. What do you have to lose? I mean, you have nothing to lose, you only you have to lose when later on it comes up and it's an issue. And you know, i wish I would have said something. Yeah, you know.

Mark Chaknos:

So disclose, disclose, disclose always Yeah, i'll give, i'll give one more quick tip.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, go ahead, sellers like if you ever had a contractor out or any licensed company of any sort. They looked at an issue in the past and maybe you say you didn't repair it back, then You should probably still disclose it, especially it hadn't been fixed. Because those are the type of things where they'll say, no, you know, we never dealt with that, and then something does happen to that particular item And then they hire that same contracting companies. I told these people five years ago I've heard that so many times.

Brad Weisman:

Oh yeah, all wait, They're like. Well, yeah, we were in here last week before settled and we told him, We told him the heaters system to work, he's you a loss in the suit.

Mark Chaknos:

You're not gonna win on that one.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, one of my first deals when I first got in the business was was kind of like that, actually much worse. It was a semi-detached and I'll never forget it the like four weeks after settlement and they had put down you know, small trickle during, yeah, storms, whatever, but never had an accumulation of any kind of rain like you know it's just moisture, whatever.

Brad Weisman:

so when they move into the, the buyer moves in, i get a call from the buyer's agent after they moved in and It's like six weeks later we had had major rain, like like three, four inches of rain in a day, and And next thing, you know, i get this call and they said I said well, they said oh, by the way, when they called the fire company to come pump out the water out of their basement That's how much water was in the basement Yeah, they said Oh, yeah, we've been here eight or nine times before.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, there you go right, Yeah, yeah so that just shows you that you're never gonna get away with it. No, on a self disclosure statement, it's gonna come back to bite in the butt at some point. So it's a big part of what you do, though, which is interesting. It is a big part, yeah, it's amazing. Well, so what is?

Mark Chaknos:

this clothes, man? What is that So?

Brad Weisman:

that's, that's a state a document It's yes, required form.

Mark Chaknos:

So every seller has to fill one out and It essentially tells you a little bit of backstory. The house you know, talk about who's lived here, when did you buy it? Have you had any pets? how old's your heat, your AC, and then disclose any issues that you've had current or past.

Brad Weisman:

It actually prompts you, which is what I like. Yeah, you know, when you think about, like years ago, when I first got in the business, disclosure was in this form Mr Mrs Seller, do you have anything to disclose about the house?

Mark Chaknos:

No, okay, so then let's get this listing contract done.

Brad Weisman:

That's the way it went. So what happened is with the seller disclosure statement, which was brought into effect, you know, years ago, was because it made you think. Sure, it makes you think you'll sit there because maybe you wouldn't think about the electrical problem. That was a problem. But if it's asking you, was there a problem, you're gonna go. Oh yeah, we did, you know to me.

Mark Chaknos:

So it's funny how it's evolved you know It's not a bad thing at all And I think the the hardest part right now in the market that we're in currently is that most deals are getting done without inspections. Yeah so if you have an inspection paired with a properly filled out Seller's disclosure, you've got pretty good confidence going absolutely. But what we're seeing more often than not now is no inspection, yes, and a so-so filled out disclosure.

Brad Weisman:

Yes, and that's where problems are eyes absolutely, and I think that's, but I think it's really good that you're very strict on that, and it Made makes us very strict on it, obviously and telling our sellers look, you need to have this all filled out. Yeah, and then what's nice is we have really good transaction coordinators here that for our agents and They end up making sure that that's all filled out also.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah there's a lot of steps in the compliance. I think it's good for people to know that we're we're following the letter of law from PA. No doubt about what we're doing. It's not that we're trying to be a pain in the ass. We're doing it because it's it's the right things to do. Well, we're looking to protect our clients interest. Yeah, exactly, not only our own, you know?

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, really it's really our clients. Yeah, exactly in order to be strict on that.

Brad Weisman:

We don't want it. We don't want them getting wrapped up into something you know later on. I always say when you walk away from this house, you don't want to have to look back. Yeah, you know people want to walk away and go. Okay, i took my memories with me, but I don't want to look back at any problems. That's right. You know positive or negative.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, exactly deal with it, you'd be very mostly attached to home. You just sold it and then, the next thing you know, you're caught up in a lawsuit. Or perhaps you went through a divorce And it was a chapter in your life now you wanted to close. Next thing you know it's back open. Yeah, exactly those, probably so not fun. Those are the type of things.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, not fun. What other things can you think about that that you can do as a broker Or versus a realtor? I'm trying to think of anything else. So you can open your own company, correct, you can run your own company, manage it, run it, whatever. You don't have to be something that most people think too. You don't have to own the company to be the broker of record.

Mark Chaknos:

That's correct. Yeah, so the broker of record is really just like the head of compliance is what we just talked about, but you could just be a broker within that company and then consider an associate broker. Yeah, So that's different levels of licensure at the broker level. An associate broker back in the day I would say it was more renowned as someone that was just further educated in the industry Yeah.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, and we don't see that as much anymore, and I think it's because people view it as well that education doesn't pay, unless I'm going to be the main broker or a manager or property manager Or open my own thing? Yeah, So like when I did my brokers classes in 2015, I'm trying to think I think there was two people in our class Crazy. And now I know, when people are trying to get their broker's license, it's extremely limited and they don't even have as many classes.

Brad Weisman:

They don't, And that's one of the things I've noticed. They don't have as many classes, But I would suggest anybody out there to get it Especially. Here's the thing. I've told myself this, and I've never followed it in real estate but always be prepared for an opportunity. Yeah, You might think, oh, why would I ever need my brokers? But you never know when somebody's going to say, hey, you know what, we're starting a new real estate company. You will never be looked at if you don't have your brokers. Yeah, If you have your brokers you're one of the few that does And if your personality fits theirs, they might say, hey, we want you on board.

Mark Chaknos:

Well, there's no doubt it, It should help you in your business Absolutely, in attaining new business. I mean, it's that added layer of education that everyone should respect that you went through.

Brad Weisman:

Absolutely. So what do you think about taking the broker hat off? What do you think about this market? What do you think is going on So?

Mark Chaknos:

you know, what I've been seeing mostly as of late is prices are continuing to appreciate, i'd say particularly under the $500,000 mark Totally, and then we're starting to see things to slow down a little bit as far as activity on the 500 plus. They're still selling, but it feels like those houses have kind of reached a peak now. Yeah, i agree, you know, if we got 30 showings on our $300,000 listing, we might only have five on our $600,000 listing.

Brad Weisman:

I know exactly what you mean. Yeah, And we're seeing price reductions. I mean that's $600 and plus man, $600 plus, $550 plus is starting to see price reductions And I think that's a that I do think is a direct result of interest rates. I think, i think, because when you start getting into that realm it definitely affects your payment. I mean, it's not about it.

Mark Chaknos:

And at some point you just kind of have to run out of buyers for these type of properties that have been selling for so much money.

Brad Weisman:

Absolutely.

Mark Chaknos:

Just based on our demographics in Berks County in general. But you know we're still a pretty affordable place to live. We talked about this before. You know that's why that price under $500,000 still goes. You know pretty quickly because you know $500,000 in some of these other areas closer to the Philadelphia markets to condo it could be. It could even be. I saw a townhouse listed for sale down in Ivy Land, pa, which is a warm and stir. Okay.

Mark Chaknos:

975,000 for a townhouse, yeah, that's just it looks like you know, like the ground day ones that they just built here in Osmo, which are beautiful, yes, but, but they're not three times the price.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, what's crazy.

Mark Chaknos:

Four times.

Brad Weisman:

We still have a really good market for here, for that affordability And that's the affordability Absolutely So I think, hugo, you had a question. Did you have another question?

Mark Chaknos:

Oh yeah, i was wondering, like what is the thing or improvement that you can do to your home prior to selling that will give you the greatest return on investment? Yeah, prior to selling, i would say, if you got carpets in any of your place, replace the carpets, and paint goes a long way. Absolutely, because a lot of times you know the buyers go into a house to determine whether or not they feel as though the sellers lived in it hard. You know you might have four kids and two dogs and every piece of trim in that house is torn off and the carpets are stinky.

Mark Chaknos:

Have you been in my house? No, yeah, just kidding.

Brad Weisman:

Specifically referencing Brad's house, but I am. But it's amazing what a Bernie's Mountain dog can do. Yeah.

Mark Chaknos:

But you know they won't have any clue if those carpets are brand new and you just actually painted the place. And then their mindset changes.

Brad Weisman:

Absolutely.

Mark Chaknos:

And those dollars that you just spent could equate to, I'd say, two and a half times what you put into it. I agree with that 100%.

Brad Weisman:

And if you're looking for that short term, i think, if you're looking for long term and you're thinking you know we're thinking about redoing our kitchen I think those are decisions that you'd want to wait. You'd want to know that you're going to be there for at least five years more.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, kitchen and master bath.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, like that. Yeah, because those are pricey, pricey items and I don't know if you're going to get it back in a year or two, but I think if you wait that five years, you probably at least break even or make a little bit of money.

Mark Chaknos:

Yeah, i agree, and it's also a little dependent on location, you know what I mean, absolutely So, if you're round zero for real estate in Berks County, wherever you determine that to be, and you need to put the kitchen in, you'll get your money back and maybe then some. But in other areas that maybe you're pricing yourself out of that market. it doesn't make sense.

Brad Weisman:

Yeah, And I always think it's funny too. People will ask the question, like about finished basements and things. If the whole community like Warner Farm, if everybody in there are 99% of them have finished basements and you don't, yes, it's going to affect your value.

Mark Chaknos:

It's something Right. It's going to affect you.

Brad Weisman:

You're not going to be able to get what the person just sold for. It's just not going to happen, absolutely. So those things do matter. You know it's not like you're going to get a ton more. You're just not going to get market value, right You?

Mark Chaknos:

know it really is what it is, And finished basements aren't cheap to do, especially now, no, they're not, so I know they're not. you know, these people could have done that for 30 grand 10 years ago And now it's costing you 70 grand. Yeah. It's so true So did that answer your question Here you go?

Brad Weisman:

Yep, all right, cool, anything else you want to end with? Believe it or not, we spoke for 18 minutes. 18 minutes. It's a good conversation, though. We now know what a broker does. We know what a broker, what a realtor, can't do, which is which is good to know, and all that of stuff. Anything else you can think of? No, thanks for having me on. No problem, you're going to go golfing golf in the day.

Mark Chaknos:

Golf into the men's league today, 15. All right, good, good, all right, sounds good, man.

Brad Weisman:

All right, that's it. There we have it. Broker versus realtor. What the hell is a broker? Now we know, thank goodness we know, because I know a lot of people ask that question and now we know. So we will see you next Thursday at 7 pm. All right, that's it, thank you.

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