Competition and Efficiency in Transacting: The Case of Residential Real Estate Brokerage
This paper examines the functioning of the market for brokerage services for residential real estate. The central issue addressed is whether the manner in which brokerage services have traditionally been provided and priced is consistent with efficiency. In approaching this question, the paper first describes the activities usually associated with the brokerage function and develops criteria for the efficient provision of brokerage services. After the structural characterisitcs and pricing practices of the brokerage industry are analyzed, a model of brokerage firm competition is developed. The principal finding is that the traditional absence of price competition among brokers may have led to an inefficiently large commitment of resources to the brokerage industry, supported by excessive rates for consumers of brokerage services. These results stem from the way that competitive pressures emerge when price competition is largely suppressed. Copyright American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association.
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Volume (Year): 10 (1982)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
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