Everything You Need to Know About Opcity's Referral Fee

Ben Mizes


Ben Mizes

August 18th, 2021
Updated August 18th, 2021


Opcity's referral model has piqued the interest of real estate agents across the country. Rather than paying a high price for junk leads, the referral fee is worth more if the lead becomes a paying customer. Here's what you need to know about their pricing model.

Everything You Need to Know About Opcity's Referral Fee

Opcity is taking the real estate world by storm with its unique perspective on real estate referral fees. The platform aims to give agents better quality leads by vetting and nurturing leads before passing them on. The company is focused on improving conversion rates, which sounds like good news for agents who invest in lead generation.

But with quality comes a price; many report Opcity's referral fees are higher than most lead referral programs.

Here's a look at how Opcity works, what they charge, and whether it's the right choice for your business.

Lead Generation vs. Lead Qualification

Before we dive into specifics, it's important to understand the subtle differences between lead generation and lead qualification. Most platforms focus on the former while Opcity embraces the latter.

Lead generation is simply the process of collecting leads. For example, a platform will drive traffic to their website, collect information from those visitors, and then pass it off to a realtor to take over from there.

The conversion process happens offline and is largely left up to the agent's abilities; the platform has done their job of sending you a lead (regardless of whether the individual became a client).

Lead qualification takes this process a step further by validating the quality of the leads. To do this, platforms and companies like Opcity are looking deeper into the sales funnel to ensure the lead is agent-ready rather than a person curious about real estate, but not looking to buy or sell.

In Opcity's model, agents don't pay per lead, but rather pay a referral fee if the lead turns into a paying customer. The idea is to only send qualified leads with the best chance of turning into a saleto the agent. It's poised to be a huge time- and money-saver for agents.

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How Opcity Helps Real Estate Agents

For real estate agents, Opcity helps to remove much of the risk of paying for leads. With traditional lead generation, you pay for leads regardless of whether they turn into a customer. You also have to spend time screening and following up with each lead, which puts you even further away from a profit.

For comparison, Zillow charges between $20 and $220 per lead. With Opcity, you pay nothing to receive and connect with leads. Once you close the transaction, you'll pay Opcity a referral fee.

How Opcity Helps Brokers

When your real estate agents are productive, brokers automatically see the benefit in terms of revenue. But aside from increasing sales, Opcity takes away some of the time-intensive tasks that brokers deal with every day. They follow up with leads, manage sales performance, assign leads to your agents, and even monitor follow up to help increase your closing rate.

Brokers pay a small fee per lead along with a reduced referral fee for every successful closing. And just like real estate agents, brokers will only receive qualified leads who are ready to connect with agents so you aren't wasting money on tire kickers.

How Opcity Works With Realtor.com

Last year, News Corp (the parent company of realtor.com) acquired Opcity, giving realtor.com a leg up in online lead services. Earlier this year, the platform began testing Opcity as a replacement to its current lead generation service.

Realtor.com is encouraging its users who are already generating or purchasing leads from them to start taking advantage of Opcity's proven process that converts three to five times more than the industry average.

When a potential buyer or seller visits realtor.com and puts in their information, Opcity immediately contacts them, usually while the individual is still on the page. They have a team of more than 400 reps who make roughly 1.2 million calls each month. While the client is on the line, the rep can connect them directly to an agent if they're interested.

Pros of Opcity

The biggest advantage of using Opcity is the next-level qualification. Agents and brokers alike can feel confident they're only paying for leads they have a chance of closing. They don't have to worry about wasting precious resources on people who aren't serious about buying or selling, which also frees up more time to devote to existing clients.

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Cons of Opcity

Even though you're only paying if your lead turns into a paying customer, the hefty referral fee takes away from the monetary benefits you enjoy. Expect to pay roughly 30% to 35% of your commission to Opcity on every lead you close.

For perspective, on a house priced at the national median of $227,700, you would receive about $6,833 in commission. Opcity would claim anywhere from $2,050 to $2,392, leaving you with between $4,441 and $4,783 in profit. Plus, agents still have to pay a brokerage fee, so their take-home profit is usually less than half of their typical commission.

It's a high price to pay for quality leads. In some cases, the math may work out in your favor and end up costing you less than your current lead generation methods, especially when you factor in the time you spend chasing junk leads.

If you're looking for high-quality leads that don't cost a fortune, consider the benefits of Clever. We partner with full-service agents who receive leads we've qualified for no upfront costs. When a deal closes you pay Clever a referral fee of 25%.

Reach out to learn more about joining our Partner Network.

FAQs About Opcity

How much is a real estate lead?

Opcity real estate leads cost nothing up front. Once you sign up with the company, they will start sending your qualified leads and it's only when you close a transaction that you will have to pay. The fee is typically 30-35% of your commission.

What is a real estate referral?

A real estate referral is where one source refers a client to a real estate agent or brokerage. The referral could come from another agent or a platform like Zillow or realtor.com could act as an intermediary.

Do realtor.com leads work?

Having acquired Opcity, a lead qualification service, realtor.com is poised to provide better leads. Rather than send out every lead that enters the sales funnel, realtor.com now has the technology to qualify those leads and send only the ones who are ready to work with an agent.

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