Virtual agency eXp Realty dominates the RealTrends 500 list

Virtual brokerage eXp Realty has dominated the 2023 RealTrends 500 list after closing the most transaction sides in 2022 and being ranked the No. 1 Public Independent in the US.

In its 34th year, RealTrends 500 showcases the top 500 brokerages in the country based on transaction sides.

Regarded as the leading report ranking the performance of the top residential real estate brokerage firms, RealTrends adheres to a stringent review and requires independent verification of application submissions. 

The 2023 survey is based on 2022 transactional data.

eXp Realty ended 2022 with 397,138 sides and was also named as the top mover by transaction sides, following an 11.67 per cent increase on the 355,627 sides recorded in 2021.

eXp Realty not only beat out big names such as Compass, which finished fourth, in the transaction sides rankings, it also displaced HomeServices of America, which had a stronghold on the No.1 spot for the past four years.

HomeServices took out third place for transaction sides, with 302,519, while Anywhere Advisors slotted into second place with 312,018 transaction sides.

A transaction side is defined as working as either the buying agent or the selling agent and, if the agent worked for both parties, it counts as two transaction sides.

eXp Realty was also named as the top mover by sales volume on the RealTrend 500 list following a 20.5 per cent increase from $132 billion to $159.135 billion.

RealTrends Senior Advisor Steve Murray said eXp Realty had a standout year despite a difficult market.

“It is noteworthy that eXp was the only one of the top four firms to grow both its closed transactions and its sales volume in 2022, when sales of existing homes were down significantly,” he said.

In total, the top four agencies had about 20 per cent market share in the US.

“These four brokerage companies did just over $20 billion in residential gross commission revenue, which shows steady growth in a down market,” Mr Murray said.

“In the 2021 rankings (based on 2020 data), these same firms closed just over $14 billion, so the increase was 43 per cent in one year among just these four firms and stayed the same between 2022 and 2023.”

Agencies in the 2023 RealTrends 500 list accounted for about 40.6 per cent of all brokerage-controlled sales in the US.

Agents with RT500 firms had an average of 6.6 transactions per agent, compared to 7.9 transactions per agent last year. 

This year, the media number of agents per RT500 firm was 1180, up from 1138 in 2022 and up from 1025 in 2021.

“We’ve seen three years in a row of record growth of the RealTrends 500 firms in share of transactions, volume and number of realtors,” Mr Murray said.

The news of eXp Realty’s success comes after founder chairman and CEO of eXp World Holdings, Glenn Sanford was reinstated as eXp Realty CEO at the start of this year.

At the time Mr Sanford said he was excited to drive the agency’s “next phase of growth by doubling down on agent-centric innovation”.

“Our model was designed to withstand varying market conditions, which uniquely positions us to continue investing in the agent experience in a down market. In turn, we maximise long-term growth and profitability.”

Glenn Sanford. Source: The Real Deal.

In 2022 eXp Realty’s revenue increased 22 per cent to $4.6 billion, gross profit climbed 24 per cent to $366.9 million and agents and brokers on the virtual platform increased 21 per cent to 86,203.

eXp Realty was born in 2009 and came to Australia in 2019, offering agents an alternative model to reduce their costs and grow their business.

At the time, then eXp World Holdings Executive Vice President Jason Gesing told Elite Agent, “There are great cost savings that come with not having brick and mortar offices in each of our markets”.

“There are great cost savings with not having to replicate certain staff roles, but at the same time providing very interpersonal and engaging experiences.”

Other trends in the RealTrend 500

Of the top 25 brokerages on the RT500, seven firms are considered low-fee or low-cost firms that charge a flat fee to the agents or have higher commission splits for agents than traditional firms.

United Real Estate ranked the highest at No.7 followed by HomeSmart (9), Fathom Realty (10), The Real Brokerage (11), Real Estate ONE Group (15) West USA Realty (19) and Samson Properties (23).

This year, 48 new brokerages joined the Billionaire’s Club, which is awarded when a brokerage closes at least $1 billion worth of real estate in the calendar year.

While the number of Billionaire’s Club is lower than last year, sitting at 392 firms, compared to 435 in 2022, it’s still higher than the 347 members in 2021.

You can see the full list of RealTrends 500 here.

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Editor at Elite Agent.

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