Forecasts and Opinions

Editor’s Note: Rather than a feature article written this year, the Editor could not resist this article which first appeared in the January 1975 issue of the Real Estate News Observer. It is another excellent example of the enduring quality of Richard Reno’s philosophy.

For over 20 years, this writer has been able to rather accurately predict the state of the real estate business for a year ahead. This is not true now. In my opinion, the problem is that there is no logic in our economy – nothing to hang any facts on. I feel this to be the main problem. As to a solution of the situation of short money and in some cases, no money, the inability of buyers to qualify for what loans are available, lack of construction in some areas and some areas already over-built-there are many problems. We see no single solution.

Insofar as changes in operations are concerned, our office doesn’t have to change because for many years we’ve done counseling and exchanging. We have attempted to look after the welfare of our clients by getting them better benefits than they had when we started working with them. It seems now that the competent exchange counselors throughout the country are more apt to withstand the assault on our business than any other group. This is due to the fact that they are tuned toward solving people’s problems professionally.

As days go by we foresee an overwhelming number of problems in 1975. Again we will find the REO Formula much in demand as a means of perhaps keeping some savings and loan companies alive. Many other creative things can be done which many of us have been doing for years – to do business without the use of money. Other than for the necessities of life, money seems to be doing nothing as an answer to the current real estate problems.
It is the writer’s opinion that the more government action there is, the worse things will get. If labor is able to force price and wage controls, in our opinion, this will only make everything worse. We are being harassed by government interference from the justice department, lack of consideration for investment, and lack of consideration for construction in many areas.

My forecast – only God could give an accurate one. All is too confusing for the human mind to know for sure how to cure the many ailments.

My message in this instance is primarily directed to the truly professional real estate exchange and investment counselor. It concerns his role in the 1975 picture, and how he will accept his responsibilities, and how he will take advantage of the opportunities. There are of course, worthy and honorable counselors in other fields whose work is a vital part of our living. The banker is concerned with values today. The lawyer is concerned with the rights and liberties of persons. The CPA sets up the figures given him, and applies the pertinent rules. The physician is concerned with the preservation of health. None of these counselors can, as individuals, offer a perfect guarantee of financial security in the future. Who, then? It has been proven over the past dozen years that counselors of our ilk can provide the kind of counseling needed to overcome obstacles, discouragements, and baffling contingencies. We recognize when there is a need to call in other counselors. We can work all opinions and suggestions into a single unified solution.

In view of the paramount position in the counseling picture, how much is a real estate exchange and investment counselor entitled to for his professional services? For your consideration, I submit that under the economic situation with comparative values and on the basis of results, we should be entitled to $200 per hour for personal counseling, and a minimum of $100 per telephone call. Expertness should be adequately compensated.

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