Back in 2010, Joshua Hunt’s life changed completely. After years in the real estate industry, national recognition, and millions of dollars dropped in his bank account by buying and selling houses, Hunt’s career suddenly was unknown after he lost his job at Keller Williams in Charleston, South Carolina for coming out as a gay man.
“I was working with Keller Williams before I lost my job, and when they were not willing to help me, I realized that this industry doesn’t care about people—only money,” he said. “I’m thankful for it now, because it led me to start TRELORA.”
Headquartered in Denver, TRELORA—an anagram of realtor—has saved Colorado homeowners more than $43 million in traditional commissions since its launch in 2011. Home buyers and sellers can buy or list homes with the brokerage for a flat fee of $2,500 rather than paying up to six percent in traditional agent commissions, all while securing access to a team of expert real estate agents who are salaried, focused on surprising and delighting their clients.
Yes, a flat fee for buying and selling houses in Denver, Colorado. Let that sink in.
TRELORA provides the expertise of the top agents in the country, spectacular customer service, and state-of-the-art technology to offer a compassion-driven home buying and selling experience. It is TRELORA’s dedication to move people’s lives forward in a positive motion that has produced tens of millions in savings for buyers and sellers.
“Buying a house is one of the most stressful things you can do in your life. It comes when people are either at their highest or lowest—every situation is different,” Hunt said. “We understand this and we act with compassion. We put our clients first, and we support them through the entire process.”
TRELORA may pride itself on the compassion it holds for its clients, but they also take pride in disrupting the real estate industry.
Hunt said last year Denver Metro real estate agents collected $1.5 billion in commissions on home sales. He said those commissions should have been around $300 million.
“Today, we use technology for everything. People looking for a house find five or six online before they reach out to an agent. We use digital documents that take much less time to fill out and finalize. Realtors do about 80 percent less work than they used to,” Hunt said.
He’s not wrong. The process of buying and selling homes is heavily immersed in technology—from website listings and real-time texts and video chats to 3-D virtual reality tours and electronic signatures. In 2017, 13 percent of buyers and eight percent of sellers didn’t use a real estate agent when purchasing or selling their homes, according to the National Association of Realtors.
A big motivating factor for those going without agents or with limited-service brokers is not wanting to pay a hefty fee or contribute to a six percent commission that can add up to tens of thousands of dollars.
Let’s hit you with some real quick, really important numbers. Stay with us here.
In February, the average price of a single-family home in denver rose above $500,000 for the first time, according to the Denver Metro Association of Realtors. The commission on a home of that price is $30,000—3 percent collected by the selling real estate agent and 2.8 percent collected by buying real estate agent. In a traditional setting, each realtor is walking away with roughly $15,000.
TRELORA is only charging $2,500. Again, Trelora only charges their clients $2,500. Trelora also says home sellers can decide to offer agents representing buyers just $2,500 in contrast to their typical 3 percent commission.
Hunt acknowledges that as many as 40 percent of buyer agents are refusing to show Trelora listings, an expression of their displeasure with the low TRELORA commissions. They’ve also taken it a bit further, egging cars, throwing stones in windows, and leaving aggressive voicemails.
“People can hate us all they want, but they are hating us out of greed,” Hunt said. “The worst they can do is accuse us of being the best, the most compassionate realtors in the state. I’m 100 percent fine with that.”