Re/Max has withdrawn from its strategic referral alliance with Redfin after only two months.
In March, the companies announced the alliance for Redfin offices in Canada (currently in Toronto and Vancouver) and the U.S. Under the arrangement, in areas where Redfin does not have offices, Redfin referred customers to approved Partner Agents at other brokerages, including participating Re/Max agents. When the customer closed on a home purchase or sale, Redfin received a referral fee.
But in a statement, Redfin says: “At issue between Re/Max and Redfin has been Redfin Direct, the new service we’re piloting in Boston for Redfin’s listing customers to get offers from unrepresented buyers. We had briefed Re/Max on the technology prior to announcing the partnership, but Re/Max became concerned that Redfin Direct would undermine the standing of North American buyers’ agents.
“Redfin understands this concern, as we employ thousands of licensed professionals and believe the vast majority of homebuyers need professional advice and will happily pay for it. But we also have a duty to get as many offers for our customers’ listings as we possibly can, and to give those listing customers the best value. We believe in consumer choices; our mission is to redefine real estate in consumers’ favour.”
Re/Max said in a statement: “Re/Max strongly believes the role of a real estate agent in the homebuying and selling process is more important than ever. Consumers faced with the largest, most complex financial transaction of their lives should have a knowledgeable professional to guide and advise them. We believe real estate agents provide this essential service to a successful buying and selling experience.
“Given Redfin’s recent announcement regarding a program that would encourage buyers not to use agents on listings where the seller is represented by Redfin, we cannot continue with an official, corporate-level relationship at this time. We have begun the process of dissolving our exclusive referral agreement with them beginning today.”
Redfin says it “can now enroll partner agents from other brokerages to serve Redfin.com visitors in the U.S. and Canada.”