By Peter Ricci
Compared to lawyers, politicians and used car salesmen, how ethical are real estate agents?
According to a new poll out from Gallup, which sampled more than 1,000 adults in all 50 states, the answer to that question is actually quite promising.
The poll was fairly straightforward, asking respondents whether they viewed individuals in a given profession as having ethical standards that are “high,” “average” or “low.” For agents, 20 percent of respondents rated them as highly ethical, while 57 percent rated average and 22 percent rated low. The results placed the real estate profession right around the average for the jobs Gallup tested, but the
20 percent “high” ethical rating is actually the best ever for agents.
Some other interesting tidbits from the study:
- Bankers, building contractors and journalists rated higher than agents, with very high ethical ratings of 25, 26 and 26.
- All professions were left in the dust by the three most ethical jobs, which were nurses, pharmacists and medical doctors. The professions rated, respectively, 84, 73 and 70 percent on high ethical standards. Nurses have topped the survey in all but one year since they were first included in 1999, and their high ethical rating was, along with medical doctors, a new peak.
- The worst-performing professions by a wide margin were car salespeople, lobbyists and – the pride of Washington and Lincoln – members of Congress. All three received just 7 percent for high standards, and Congressional members sat at the bottom of the entire survey with an incredible 64 percent rating for low standards.
- Though Congress’ positives have never been particularly strong (its ethical support peaked following 9/11), its negatives have skyrocketed since 2003, a time span when its low/very low rating has nearly tripled. See the full poll of where agents rank amongst other careers online: chicagoagentmagazine.com/20-percent-think-agents-have-very-high-ethical-standards.
Though agents may still have some work to do on their ethical standings, rest assured – they are more trusted and respected than politicians!