It’s a tough job but someone has got to do it. As an Independent San Jose Real Estate Broker I accept the challenge of putting “real” into reality and entertainment TV and educating the consuming San Jose home selling and home buying public with the truth; no deception or tomfoolery

I’d like to think that we all know what we see on “Reality TV” is not real. Well, not really “real.” It is very much staged and the information provided has little to do with the actual facts, in other words “reality.” The shows are designed for entertainment. I know many people, my clients included, who believe that most, if not all, of what they see on real estate reality shows are “real.”  

People ask me: “How can they say that if it is not true?”  

My only response to that is:  “It’s television entertainment not a documentary.”  

The National Association of Realtors (“NAR”) recently had a hair-brain idea to “team up” with the television show Modern Family. The back-story to this is a long one. For now, let’s suffice it to say that members of NAR began to voice their belief that NAR was all about NAR and not its members.  Does that sound familiar or like anything you can relate to? 

This “teaming up” with Modern Family and the follow up commercials with Phil, who is not a Realtor, from the entertainment television show Modern Family, is NAR’s attempt to provide value to its members. [shaking my head in disbelief here]

The Modern Family show aired in early May 2016. Realtor Magazine reports ” ‘Modern Family’ Lifts the REALTOR® Brand” to which I bellow … you have got to be flipping kidding me! 

Do you think the creators of Modern Family randomly gave the name of “Dunphy” to the character that plays the role of a real estate agent?  I don’t.  That show has been on the air for a long time.  I believe the name of the character who plays Mr. Dunphy was derived to fit the already negative reputation of the real estate industry.  

I can only imagine the reason “why” was to showcase Realtors as Idiots.  

Groucho Marx, I believe is known for saying: “I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.” 

The National Association of Realtors is an association I must be a member of IF I want access to the Multiple Listing Service (“MLS”). Talk about a ball and chain.  

I would not be paying dues for the right to use the term Realtor. In fact, I do not market myself as a Realtor. My intent is to disassociate myself other than the mandatory fees I am required to pay annually.


It was not enough to showcase “Realtor” on the Modern Family television show when Phil Dunphy announced he isn’t just a real-estate agent, he’s a proud … Realtor.  There is a difference you know


And, let’s not forget I pay dues to the California Association of Realtors, my local Silicon Valley Association of Realtors, AND the MLS itself. For the record, I do see value in these associations and take no issue in paying their dues. 

The television show that showcased Mr. Dunphy as a Realtor … not just a real estate agent was stupid and insulting enough.  But wait. There’s more!


Since the airing of the Modern Family show, I’ve seen two commercials with Phil Dunphy, which rightfully is pronounced DUMB-PHY.  

One talks about his “cat-like reflexes” which showed him getting hit in the head with a ball at 4-5 times. Who is stupid enough to sit there at let someone throw a ball at their head?  Apparently, a REALTOR.  

What do “cat-like” reflexes have to do with listing a San Jose home for sale? Might the commercial be implying predator behavior?  Don’t cats prowl and prey for food, and even the sheer joy and entertainment of the kill? Many of my clients have cats that don’t eat all they kill. Many cats will bring their kill of a mouse or a bird inside the house and drop it at my clients feet – as though bestowing them with a gift.  


The second commercial is Mr. DUMB-ASS (as is ASS-ociation) of REALTORS sitting in a chair reading talking about “negotiation” and silence. The other guys blabbing while he has the confidence to not say a darn thing.  

This commercial ASS-sumes

  • That the mere fact that we are forced to pay dues to NAR means all Realtors know how to negotiate or when to be silent. HA!!
  • If the above is true, then what about the other babbling guy that can’t shut up?  Is he not a Realtor? He is if he wants MLS access!

I do not want to know what kind of money NAR is spending these Dumb-phy commercials which air on prime time television. We all know prime time commercial air time comes at a premium. NAR seems to be fighting for its life … not the members. 

Why not keep it REAL.  Real people. Real messages –  not dumbed-down.  I believe the commercials are an insult to the consuming public and real estate professionals, not Realtors, who make a living listing and selling homes, businesses, commercial properties, land, etc. 

I take listing San Jose homes for sale very seriously. 

As much as it pains me to say it … the Zillow commercials got the message right. Those commercials speak to the home buying and home selling consumer. And, Zillow will find them an agent. More on how Zillow does that in another post as Zillow is not the point of this post.  

Nor is the point of this post a commentary on the television show Modern Family or the person who plays the character of Mr. Dunphy.  

This is about NAR.  It is about deception. It’s about television entertainment. It’s about the REAL reality behind the television entertainment. 

It is about my feelings, thoughts, and beliefs about how the NAR continues to add to the negative reputation of the real estate industry. The commercials are CRAP. 

Author:  Kathleen Daniels, Independent Broker-Owner, KD Realty in San Jose, CA publicly dis-ASS-ociating myself from the ASS-ociation. I just pay the dues because I have to pay them.  Not proud to be a REALTOR. It means nothing to me.

Honestly, it means nothing to you either, the consumer, who hires a real estate agent to list and sell their San Jose home or to purchase a home. 

I am proud to be a real estate professional adviser and consultant. Rising above the nonsense of NAR, making a difference in the lives of those I serve, and knowing that NAR has nothing to do with how I serve my clients or the marketing and negotiating strategies I employ to serve them. 

Searching for a San Jose Home for sale  … don’t use Zillow. Hire a local professional to help you with your home purchase

Need to list your San Jose home for sale, consult with a local real estate professional that will provide you with a actual home value, not a estimate or automated value of your home.  Hire someone who truly understands negotiation and has a well documented value based approach to listing homes.  

No drama. No Commercials. No branding of the term “Realtor.” My focus is on my clients who become raving fans. They all experience how I serve their goals, needs, wants and desires. They know my focus and priority is to protect them from the other babbling guy.

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