Read Dave Ramsey ELP realtor reviews | Is Dave Ramsey ELP realtor worth it? | What is Dave Ramsey ELP realtor? | Is Dave Ramsey ELP realtor legit? | How Dave Ramsey ELP realtor works | Dave Ramsey ELP realtor fees | Pros and cons | Top alternatives | Dave Ramsey ELP realtor for agents
✍️ Editor's take: Dave Ramsey ELP can help you find an agent fast, but if you're a Dave Ramsey fan you may be disappointed by the results and lack of savings.
Dave Ramsey ELP realtors is the real estate agent branch of Dave Ramsey’s Endorsed Local Providers (ELP) program.
The ELP program can connect you with a variety of financial professionals — like tax advisors, insurance agents, and realtors — who have been “endorsed” by Ramsey, the popular financial guru, talk show host, and podcaster.
Our team found that Dave Ramsey’s ELP realtor program can match you with an agent quickly, but the value pretty much ends there — and there are a number of major drawbacks:
- There’s a good chance your agent matches won’t fit your needs.
- You may get handed off to a realtor who knows little or nothing about Ramsey’s principles.
- There are zero cost benefits. You’ll pay full price for any agent you find through the service.
Other free agent matching services are much better at finding you an agent who meets your criteria, and a few offer built-in savings for sellers and buyers.
Clever Real Estate, for example, pre-negotiates discounted listing fees for sellers of just $3,000 or 1% vs. the typical 2.5-3% rate. And eligible buyers can get 0.5% of their home’s purchase price in cash back after closing.
Our team of researchers and mystery shoppers spent 1,400+ hours looking into Dave Ramsey ELP realtors and comparing it to the competition. Learn what we discovered about the service, including where it performs well and where it falls short — or skip ahead to read Dave Ramsey ELP reviews from real customers.
Should you work with a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor?
👍 What we like about Dave Ramsey ELP realtor:
👍/👎 Where Dave Ramsey ELP realtor is a mixed bag:
👎 Where Dave Ramsey ELP realtor misses the mark:
When we mystery shopped Dave Ramsey ELP realtors, we got agent matches quickly — but there weren’t many benefits aside from speed.
Agent quality was a big issue. Many of the agents Dave Ramsey ELP matched us with weren’t located near us. Plus, agents frequently handed us off to one of their colleagues, who often had little knowledge of Ramsey and his principles.
Worst of all, you’ll pay the same realtor commission rates with a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor as you would if you found an agent on your own. That flies in the face of Ramsey’s philosophy of looking for cost savings opportunities.
Other agent matching services, like Clever, pre-negotiate discounted commission rates with realtors on your behalf, which can end up saving you thousands of dollars on your real estate transaction.
Bottom line: Is Dave Ramsey ELP realtors right for you?
We don’t think Dave Ramsey ELP realtors is worth your time, even if you’re a Dave Ramsey fan. It flat out fails at its most important job: Matching you with a great real estate agent suited to your needs. And while you may make Ramsey a bit richer by using his service, the lack of savings means your own bank account won’t benefit.
Alternative services — all of which are free and come with zero obligations — do a better job vetting agents and also netting you big discounts in the process. We recommend ditching Dave Ramsey ELP and opting for a service that actually prioritizes agent quality and savings.
What is Dave Ramsey ELP realtor?
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor is a free agent matching service that will find you real estate agents who claim to follow Dave Ramsey’s philosophy.
After filling out an online form, Dave Ramsey ELP will instantly match you with multiple realtors. You can then interview those agents to see if they’re a good fit for you. If not, you’re free to walk away at any time — like all agent matching services, the Dave Ramsey ELP realtor program comes with zero obligations.
Ramsey, through his parent company Ramsey Solutions, also recommends other ELPs and "trusted providers" beyond realtors, including in the areas of:
- Car rentals
- Health savings
- ID theft protection
- Tax services
- Wills and power of attorney
Dave Ramsey ELP customer service representative may try to sell you on some of these additional services. We haven’t tried any of these additional services, so we can’t evaluate them.
When making a major financial decision — like applying for a mortgage — don’t just sign on the dotted line because some celebrity or self-promoting financial guru slapped their name on it. We recommend comparing multiple options to find the best fit and value.
Who is Dave Ramsey?
Dave Ramsey is a financial guru and real estate investor with a popular radio show (among other things). Ramsey is anti-debt, with a focus on helping people out of credit card debt, the dangers of taking on excessive student loans, and other financial advice.
Ramsey’s main claim-to-fame is the debt snowball technique in which you list your debts from smallest to largest, make minimum payments on all your debts except the smallest, and pay as much as possible on your smallest debt. You then repeat until you've paid each in full. The idea is that you gain momentum as you see progress.
Ramsey’s evangelical Christian beliefs are also a big part of his brand and feature prominently in his services.
Dave Ramsey controversies and lawsuits
Dave Ramsey has attracted controversy for his personal views, many of which he imposes on his employees — something he calls his company’s “righteous living” policy.
Some of Ramsey’s most notable controversies and bizarre incidents — not all of which we would consider examples of “righteous living” — include:
- Pulling a loaded gun out at a company meeting to teach employees “a lesson about gossip”
- Firing at least nine employees for having premarital sex
- Hosting a maskless party with 1,000 guests during the covid-19 pandemic, allegedly
- Requiring employees to continue to come into the office — without masks — during the pandemic
- Suing people for social media posts that are critical of Dave Ramsey ELP
Whether or not these incidents factor into your decision to use Dave Ramsey ELP is up to you. But we think it’s good to be aware of them so you can make an informed choice.
Is Dave Ramsey ELP realtor legitimate?
Yes, Dave Ramsey ELP real estate is a licensed brokerage in Tennessee. All agent matching services must be licensed in at least one state to legally operate nationwide.
Ramsey Solutions — Dave Ramsey ELP’s parent company — is rated A+ on the Better Business Bureau website, although the company hasn’t been accredited by the BBB.
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor, at a glance
N/A - Insufficient data
Agent network size
While Dave Ramsey ELP is a legitimate business, some of its business practices stood out to us as red flags.
🚩 Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t share data about agent availability
Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t share any info about how many real estate agents it has in its network. This is unusual. Most agent matching services are transparent about their agent network size.
Network size is important because a smaller agent network usually means agents are spread thin. So, Dave Ramsey ELP may not offer a ton of options near you, especially if you live in a small town or rural area. You may get matched with an agent who lives and works far away and has little local knowledge of your area.
Local knowledge is one of the top assets a great realtor brings to the table. It makes a big difference in terms of pricing your house right and drumming up interest with potential buyers. If Dave Ramsey ELP isn’t matching you with a true local agent, it's selling you short.
🚩 Your agent may not know much about Dave Ramsey’s principles
When you’re matched with a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor, you may end up getting handed off to another agent on their team. You ultimately get matched with may have little or no familiarity with Dave Ramsey or his philosophy.
This happened to us three out of four times we tried the Dave Ramsey ELP service. While this is fairly common practice at other agent matching services, it's a red flag here. You may be using Dave Ramsey ELP because you want a realtor who shares Ramsey’s values.
But with Dave Ramsey ELP there’s guarantee you’ll get a realtor who even knows who Ramsey is. For Ramsey fans, that could be a dealbreaker.
How does Dave Ramsey ELP realtor work?
- You sign up on the Dave Ramsey website by entering some basic information about your home purchase or sale.
- You'll immediately get matched with 2-3 agents via email and your customer dashboard.
- A Dave Ramsey ELP customer service representative will send an introductory email and may phone you.
- You can review your agent matches in your dashboard, which provides some basic background info, along with their level of familiarity with the "Ramsey Plan."
- You’ll likely get emails and phone calls from your matched agents or you can contact them yourself.
- After interviewing your agent matches, you can choose to work with one of them or you're free to walk away.
✍️ Editor's take:
Dave Ramsey ELP's agent matching process is completely automated, meaning no human checks that they're a good fit for you. While most agent matching services use some automation to make agent matches, they also incorporate human oversight.
Clever Concierges, for example, call you before making a match in order to know more about your specific needs. That way, you get an agent personalized to your needs — not just one chosen by an algorithm.
How much does Dave Ramsey ELP cost?
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor is free for buyers and sellers, as are all agent matching services. But you'll still have to pay standard commission feesto your realtor and the buyer’s agent if you’re selling.
These fees usually total 5-6% of the sale price, with half — called the listing fee — going to the seller’s agent and the other half to the buyer’s agent.
Interestingly, Ramsey often talks about how he opposes commission-fee financial accounts. But he seems less opposed when he’s the one taking a share of the fees 😒. Unlike other agent matching services, Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t net you discounts on realtor commissions.
Here’s how much you’d save on realtor fees on a $400,000 sale with Dave Ramsey ELP compared to Clever and Ideal Agent, both of which pre-negotiate discounts with realtors.
Dave Ramsey ELP
Buyer’s agent commission**
Savings vs. traditional agent
*Assumes a 2.7% listing fee
**Assumes a 2.7% buyer’s agent commission
If you really want to follow Ramsey’s advice and save on commission fees, we suggest avoiding Dave Ramsey ELP. Go with an agent matching service, like Clever, that pre-negotiates lower fees on your behalf.
How does Dave Ramsey ELP realtor make money?
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor doesn’t like to talk about how it makes money. We asked representatives from the company a couple times, but they never gave us a straight answer.
Our researchers dug a little deeper and found out through actual Dave Ramsey ELP partner agents on forums and through our industry contacts how the service brings in cash.
We learned Dave Ramsey ELP takes a share of the agent’s commission whenever a deal is closed with a Dave Ramsey ELP client. This is called a referral fee and it is standard practice among agent matching services.
However, Dave Ramsey ELP also charges realtors additional fees on top of the referral fee. To our knowledge, no other agent matching service does this. It potentially means your Dave Ramsey ELP partner agent makes a lot less on your home sale than they would if they worked with an alternative service. That risks making them less motivated to work extra hard to sell your home.
Dave Ramsey ELP also makes money by upselling customers on other ELP services, like mortgage lenders, tax professionals, and home insurance providers.
Don’t assume these additional services are best for you just because they’ve been endorsed by Ramsey. Always compare different services, such as mortgage offers, to ensure you’re getting the best rate and terms.
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor pros and cons
👍 / 👎 You’ll get agent matches quickly
The one and only good thing we can say about Dave Ramsey ELP realtors is that it’s fast. Every time we tried it, we got 2-3 agent matches instantly.
Most of those agents tried to reach us — by phone and email — usually within minutes of us signing up. So, you could be interviewing a potential agent within minutes of first using Dave Ramsey ELP realtor.
That being said, getting matches so quickly comes with big downsides. Because the process is fully automated, no one at Dave Ramsey ELP double checks to make sure that your agent matches are good for you.
Many other agent matching services, including Clever, call you before signing off on any automated matches to get more details about your real estate needs. That way, you can rest assured the agents you’re matched with actually fit for you — and aren't just generated by an algorithm.
👎 Agent matches aren’t always good
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor’s focus on generating matches quickly means quality gets sacrificed. We were often paired with agents who weren't great matches for our needs.
Sometimes they weren’t located in our area, they didn’t have much experience in our price range, or we were able to find much more experienced and qualified agents by searching on our own.
An especially common problem we encountered was getting agents who had limited experience where we were looking to buy or sell. We suspect Dave Ramsey ELP simply doesn’t have a large enough network of agents — the company, unlike other agent matching services, doesn’t disclose its network size.
As a result, you may get matched with an agent who isn't familiar with your local market. A Dave Ramsey ELP representative told us that local market experience isn’t as important as overall experience, but we strongly disagree.
Even the most experienced agent needs local knowledge. If they’re not familiar with your area they may end up having a harder time finding interested buyers, pricing your house appropriately, or understanding the benefits and drawbacks of the neighborhood. As a result, your house could end up taking longer to sell and you may get fewer offers.
👎 Customer dashboard makes it hard to make an informed decision
Dave Ramsey ELP realtors offers a customer dashboard where you can compare your agent matches, but you probably won’t get much use out of it.
The dashboard mostly just covers how devoted each realtor is to “the Ramsey Plan” — in other words, how many Dave Ramsey books and courses they’ve bought:
If you’re a Ramsey fan, this info may seem useful, but Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t verify that any of it is true. Plus, as we mentioned, your agent may pass you on to one of their team members, who may know nothing about Ramsey.
If you’re hoping to get an agent who knows Ramsey’s philosophy, the dashboard isn’t useful. And if you just want a great real estate agent, regardless of their adherence to Ramsey's principles, then the dashboard is also useless.
Unlike other agent matching services, the dashboard doesn’t let you see your agents’ customer ratings, recent sales, or service areas. The only info it includes that we’d consider relevant is whether your agent ranks in the top 10% in terms of sales, but that’s data most other agent matching services also provide.
👎 Customer service is hard to reach
If you want to speak to a representative from Dave Ramsey ELP, you might have trouble getting through. Our messages and phone calls to Dave Ramsey ELP often went unanswered or it took a few days for a representative to get back to us.
When we did receive a response via email, we didn’t feel like we were getting personalized or expert service.We managed to get through to someone on the phone one time — and that person was helpful — but reaching customer service shouldn’t be so difficult.
As a buyer or seller, you need an agent matching service that delivers excellent customer service. If you encounter issues or problems with your agent, the agent matching service should step in and make things right.
Dave Ramsey ELP’s spotty customer service risks leaving you on your own if you run into problems. If Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t return your calls, it can’t advocate for you if issues come up.
Other agent matching services, in contrast, regularly check in on the progress of your home sale or purchase to make sure things are going smoothly.
Some agent matching services, like Clever, even require their entire concierge team to carry real estate licenses, which legally allow concierges to give real estate advice that representatives without licenses cannot give.
👎 Zero built-in savings or discounts
Dave Ramsey ELP realtors doesn’t offer buyers or sellers any discounts or savings. You’ll pay as much for a realtor through Dave Ramsey ELP as you would finding one on your own.
Given that Ramsey built his name on teaching people to manage their spending and avoid debt, we’re surprised his own agent matching service doesn’t help you save money.
Other agent matching services offer an even better service, but they go a step further and pre-negotiate discounts with agents.
Clever Partner Agents, for example, charge a listing fee of just 1% or $3,000 for homes under $350,000, compared to the 2.5-3% you’re likely to get with an agent through Dave Ramsey ELP.
Plus, Clever offers eligible buyers 0.5% cash back on the purchase of their home. If you can get savings and top service from Clever, why would you spend thousands more for an agent through Dave Ramsey ELP?
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor reviews from real customers
Unlike most other agent matching services, Dave Ramsey ELP has no ratings on any of the major review sites, which makes it impossible to give the service a star rating.
Undeterred, our team dug through online forums like Reddit to find Dave Ramsey ELP realtor reviews from real customers. Here are some of the most common issues we found.
What customers like about Dave Ramsey ELP realtor
The few positive Dave Ramsey ELP realtor reviews we found praised the quality of the agents reviewers were matched with.
This customer, for example, loved the service they got from their agent:
And this customer also found the Dave Ramsey ELP realtors to be helpful with both the purchase and sale of their home:
In our own experience, agent quality through Dave Ramsey ELP realtor is hit and miss. You may, like the above customers, get some great agents.
But we were often matched with agents who had little experience in our area or we were handed off to an agent who wasn’t familiar with Ramsey’s philosophy.
You should interview multiple agents and nott just go with the first one Dave Ramsey ELP recommends. It's most important to find an agent who is right for you and shares your interests, not someone who just has a Dave Ramsey ELP badge.
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor complaints from customers
Most negative Dave Ramsey ELP reviews concerned agents who didn’t live up to expectations.
This customer felt that their real estate agent didn’t put enough effort into their real estate transaction and was constantly trying to upsell them on other products:
Other complaints were from customers who got matched with Dave Ramsey ELP agents, only to have those agents hand them off to a different team member.
This customer, for example, thought they were getting an aggressive and experienced realtor, but instead ended up getting a realtor with minimal experience:
Likewise, this person got matched with a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor, only to be given to that realtor’s associate, who seemed far less impressive:
While many real estate agents work as part of teams, getting handed off to a team member is a problem if you’re looking for an agent who follows Ramsey’s philosophy.
For customers looking for a realtor who shares their values, the Dave Ramsey ELP program can be a bit of a bait and switch. You think you’re getting an agent who is a big Ramsey believer, only to end up with an agent who may have never even heard of him.
Top Dave Ramsey ELP realtor alternatives
1. Clever Real Estate
💲 Listing Fee
$3k or 1%
💰 Buyer Savings
Up to 0.5% cash back
⚡ Avg. Customer Rating
Clever is a quick, easy, and free way to find a top-rated local agent. And, unlike many similar companies, Clever pre-negotiates big discounts on your behalf, so you can save thousands without sacrificing on service.
- Free, nationwide agent-matching service that partners with full-service local agents from conventional brokerages like Keller Williams, Century 21, and RE/MAX
- Provides multiple agent matches so you can interview, compare marketing plans, and choose the best fit
- Pre-negotiates low rates on your behalf — you get full service for a flat $3,000 listing fee, or just 1% if the home sells for more than $350,000
- If you buy with Clever, you could get a check worth up to 0.5% of the home price
- You may not get matched with an agent from your preferred real estate brokerage.
- Like other agent matching services, Clever may have fewer agents in rural areas.
- Agents may not provide premium services like drone photography and professional home staging.
Like Dave Ramsey ELP realtor, Clever is an agent matching service that will match you with multiple agents quickly. But Clever does a much better job vetting agents first, something that Dave Ramsey ELP falls short on.
Plus, Clever’s Concierge Team stays in contact with you throughout the process to ensure your agent is meeting your needs.
Also unlike Dave Ramsey ELP, Clever pre-negotiates discounted commission rates with top-rated realtors, so you can save thousands without sacrificing service.
When you sell with a Clever Partner Agent, you get full service for a flat $3,000 listing fee – or just 1% on homes above $350,000. If you buy with Clever, you could qualify for cash back worth up to 0.5% of the purchase price.
💲 Listing Fee
Standard rate (2.5-3%)
💰 Buyer Savings
⚡ Avg. Customer Rating
HomeLight is an excellent tool for finding a great local agent quickly. However, it offers zero built-in commission savings for sellers or buyers.
- Get a list of local real estate agents in as little as two minutes
- One of the largest agent networks in the industry makes it less challenging to find an agent who specializes in short sales and other non-traditional sales
- Optional Trade-In program makes it easier to buy a new house if you need to sell your current one first
- No built-in savings for home sellers or buyers
- No minimum qualifications for partner agents, so quality may vary between locations
As of October 7, 2021, HomeLight has an average customer rating of 4.67 across 1,099 reviews on Google, Sitejabber, and the Better Business Bureau.
HomeLight is an online real estate agent referral service that uses data to match home buyers and sellers with top-performing agents. It has a large agent network and is usually better than Dave Ramsey ELP at finding agents in your area — even if you live in a small town or rural area.
While HomeLight’s referral service is useful for choosing an agent, just like Dave Ramsey ELP, the company offers no financial benefits. After picking an agent, sellers still pay a typical commission of 5-6% — or have to negotiate for a lower rate on their own.
💲 Listing Fee
💰 Buyer Savings
⚡ Avg. Customer Rating
UpNest has agents compete for your business, which often results in you getting a discounted rate. But savings aren't guaranteed and you will usually find a better rate with competitors like Clever.
- Agents compete for customers, which often results in slightly discounted rates
- Customer dashboard is easy to use and provides lots of each information about each agent
- Savings are not guaranteed and are often only a little better than the national average
- Agent quality and coverage varies, with smaller markets having fewer options than big cities
As of October 7, 2021, UpNest has an average customer rating of 4.57, based on 3,628 reviews across Better Business Bureau, Google, Facebook, and Shopper Approved.
UpNest is a real estate agent referral service that offers better agent matches than Dave Ramsey ELP and a more user-friendly experience.
It connects home buyers and home sellers with local full-service agents, who then compete for their business. The idea is that this competition helps UpNest clients find agents who fit their needs quickly, and helps drive costs down in the form of a reduced commission rate or buyer rebate.
However, because UpNest doesn’t pre-negotiate rates on your behalf, your price tag will vary on a case-by-case basis. In our experience, the savings are only marginal and you’ll still likely pay double in commission fees than you would with Clever.
How does Dave Ramsey ELP realtor work for real estate agents?
Dave Ramsey’s ELP realtor program is a lead generation service for real estate agents.
However, Dave Ramsey ELP is more expensive for agents to use vs. other agent matching services, charging upfront and monthly fees on top of standard referral fees.
And while Dave Ramsey ELP claims its leads are more likely to convert than the competition’s, we found very little vetting of leads.
What is an ELP realtor?
ELP stands for “endorsed local provider.” It is a program run by financial guru Dave Ramsey designed to direct his followers to professionals, such as real estate agents, insurance providers, and tax advisors, who follow his philosophy.
Because Ramsey has a devoted following, the Dave Ramsey ELP badge can appeal to this niche market. As an ELP, you’re signalling to Ramsey’s followers that you share their values.
How much does it cost to be a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor?
Dave Ramsey ELP realtor fees
The fees for Dave Ramsey ELP realtor are higher and more complex than other agent matching services. The service charges a referral fee of 30% for each deal you close with a Dave Ramsey ELP client.
While a 30% referral fee is standard for the industry, there are additional fees. These include a $3,000 signup fee and $350 monthly “coaching” fees — presumably to ensure you stay up to date with Ramsey’s methods and teachings.
As far as we know, Dave Ramsey ELP is the only agent matching service that charges these additional fees on top of referral fees. Added together, the cost to become a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor may be too high for many real estate agents.
How to become a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor
Dave Ramsey ELP requires agents to have at least four years of experience with “some solid closings.” Your area must also need agents, otherwise you may be waitlisted.
Additionally, Ramsey stresses that his ELPs must understand the principles of “working the plan” — a.k.a. the debt snowball.
In effect, this means that when you sign up to be a Dave Ramsey ELP realtor, you have to answer a survey about your familiarity with Dave Ramsey, including the number of Ramsey books you’ve read, the Ramsey podcasts you listen to, and which “Baby Step” you are on. However, Dave Ramsey ELP doesn’t seem to verify this information.
🥊 Dave Ramsey ELP vs. eXp Realty
In June 2021, Dave Ramsey ELP announced it would no longer work with agents from eXp Realty, the fourth largest brokerage in the country.
According to Dave Ramsey ELP, this was because eXp’s “recruiting model takes away from the customer experience.” However, all brokerages recruit agents, so it seems odd to single out eXp Realty for this.
We don’t buy Ramsey’s excuse. Instead, Ramsey seems to have developed some grudge against eXp, with eXp agents caught in the crossfire.
The incident isn’t just bizarre — it points to a bigger risk of working with a company headed by such a controversial figure. While Dave Ramsey ELP may be a great source of leads for you, Ramsey’s volatility means you could face shifts in his company policy that could affect your bottom line.
Or you could get caught up in some bad press involving Ramsey — something that he has generated plenty of in the past, such as for pulling our loaded guns at company meetings and allegedly holding maskless employee parties during covid-19.
How good are Dave Ramsey ELP realtor leads?
We’ve heard mixed things about the quality of leads from Dave Ramsey ELP. Some realtors find the leads convert at a higher rate because they're dedicated to Ramsey’s philosophy and more willing to work with real estate agents endorsed by him.
Dave Ramsey ELP claims 10% of its referrals close on a house within 12 months, which is indeed higher than the industry average.
However, Dave Ramsey ELP realtor doesn’t actually vet leads. Customers just fill in an online form answering some basic questions about their real estate needs and they're instantly matched with 2-3 real estate agents.
No human representative from Dave Ramsey ELP checks in with leads to learn how serious they are about buying or selling.
This lack of human oversight may mean you’ll be sent leads who aren't ready to convert. As a result, your conversion rate with Dave Ramsey ELP realtors could be lower than what you'll get through other agent matching services that properly vet leads.
Clever, for example, phones all of its leads to find out what they are looking for in an agent and how ready they are to buy or sell. That way, Clever can make a more personalized match, which ultimately means that the lead is more likely to result in a closed deal for you.
That’s why the close rate for Clever leads is about 30%, much higher than just about every other agent matching service, including Dave Ramsey ELP realtors.