“For Sale” Signs vs. “NOT For Sale” Signs

I’ve got my own definition of what Realtors do. See, “Realtor Job Description 2019.”

But, I’m mostly OK** with the one offered by standup comedian (and social critic) Colin Quinn, in his Netflix special “Red State Blue State”:

“That was the genius of the Founding Fathers: they said “middlemen!” That’s what they came up with — politicians, lawyers, cops. People you could focus your anger on so that you didn’t end up chasing each other around the town square all day with hammers.

Because if there was no real estate agent, in the old days — no middleman — people would just walk up, knock on your door:

Stranger: “Hey! What’s up? I like your house, I want to live here.”
Homeowner: “Well, I live here; I like it.”
Stranger: “Do you like it enough to die for it? Because that’s where this is going . . .”

You have to go, “Excuse me!”, go in the back, get a sharpened object, come out and slice their head off, and put it on a stake outside your house. That was to tell everybody, “Not for Sale!”

Now, you’ve got the middleman — the real estate agent — who goes, “You don’t even talk to each other. You never meet. It’s just, “here’s the law, here’s the contract, this is the way we do it.”

**Up until the point where Quinn evoked the image of what he calls the ultimate “Not for Sale” sign: a head on a stake in the front lawn.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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