That’s California, and yes, you read it correctly — the California Association of Realtors is going to begin a pilot program of agent ratings.

Quoth Inman “Read it before it’s behind the paywall” News:

The California Association of Realtors is getting behind the concept of agent ratings and reviews, sponsoring a pilot program with a multiple listing service in California’s Silicon Valley in which clients of participating agents are sent customer satisfaction surveys from a third-party vendor whenever a transaction closes.

Although it will be up to the agents whether the survey results are displayed to the public, brokerages will be able to use the client reviews to spot problem areas for agents to work on, backers said.

imageCAR isn’t alone. AgentRank, Homethinking, Redfin, Yelp, Zillow and ZipRealty already have some kind of ratings system in place, according to Inman.

Obviously there’s potential for good and bad here. Good, in that being rated could drive quality. Bad, in that the process is fraught with danger — who knows what a client might blame a Realtor for? And is there a process in place to ensure a rater actually was a client?

In CAR’s case, as you (hopefully) read above, a third-party is doing it, and the transaction triggers the review, so the chance of fraud is less. Still, it’s a pilot for a reason, and it’ll be interesting to watch.