During the housing bubble one of the national brokerages aired a commercial entitled The Debate. In it a married couple with 2 small children are debating whether or not to buy a house.
The video has been viewed over 120,000 times on YouTube. You might want to go to the site to check out the 228 comments, most of which deride the role of realtors in creating the real estate bubble and many of which are unsuitable for republishing here.
Why has this seemingly innocent commercial drawn so much ire? There are a few simple reasons:
- Clearly this couple is being pushed to their limits financially and the husband is very nervous about it. This is how we got into the current mortgage mess.
- What exactly did Suzanne research? She’s a realtor, not a financial planner and the implication is that Suzanne is telling them that “they can do this” financially. Of course, Suzanne is in no position to advise them on their finances.
- The wife “loves that house”, which appears to be sufficient reason for going out on a limb. She’s become emotionally attached, which I realize is a common reaction. However, when buying a house it’s best to keep your emotions in check so that you don’t overpay.
I’m sure the advertising agency and the brokerage that produced this commercial thought they had a winner but it subsequently has become an icon of what is wrong with the real estate industry.