What's Missing From the 2019 Franchise Report

Realtor Magazine recently released the 2019 Residential Franchise Report. They have been conducting this study every two years since 2003. This year's report plus all past reports can be found here.

Some of the notable facts from this year's report: 

  • 11 percent of all brokerages were affiliated with a franchise company (down slightly from 13 percent two years ago)
  • 42 percent of REALTORS® are affiliated with a franchise (down from 43 percent in 2015)
  • Re/Max is the largest brand by number of offices and Keller Williams by number of agents
  • Brokerage affiliation at Coldwell Banker averages 22 years. The longest of any of the brands. 
  • Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, added 16,000 new agents over the past two years—a jump of 15%—and 140 new offices (the acquisition of companies like Long & Foster contributed greatly to this growth) 

Reading the report got me more curious about what is happening in the industry outside of the realm of franchising. We see a slight drop in number of agents and the number of brokers affiliated with a franchise over the last two years. Will this number continued to drop? 

We've seen fast paced growth from mega brokers like eXp and Compass now accounting for a collective 40,000 agents. Additionally, I can quickly think of several other mini mega brokers who have more than a 1000 agents but are well on their way to entering the full mega broker space. All these examples would fall into the independent category and not the franchise category. 

In the interest of educating the industry I would suggest that similar research be done on the independents. This would give us a more full picture and not a partial snap shot  of the industry in terms of independent versus franchise.  

The franchise study is newsworthy but I think there is a bigger story to be written on the current state of franchise versus independent. We need to understand what is happening with the 58 percent of REALTORS® who are with independents. 

A full analysis with charts and all the fun stuff is available here.


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