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Some notes on what you can expect when dealing with real estate brokers.


You might as well start with reading the book Influence The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini or listen to The Psychology of Human Misjudgment by Charlie Munger which is based on the book. It is almost funny how many of the outlined methods they utilize to make you feel good about the deal. The only upside to all this is that you know they will use the same methods on whoever is interested in buying the property, which most likely will lead to more potential bidders. I wish I could look at their playbook, because it seems like it’s shared by almost all real estate brokers. Is it taught in school? What books have they read?

You can indeed get a bachelor in eiendomsmegling in Norway. You can discover what books they use by searching for some combination of “eiendomsmegling”, “pensum” and “BI”. This gives a nice overview of related books. I do however get the feeling that the psychological manipulation is taught at the companies rather than the schools.


When a real estate broker is trying to get you to sign the contract, they will make sure to offer multiple price tiers for different services. They will always say that the highest priced service is uneccesary and that “most people” choose the mid-tier alternative. They will act like this is their own private opinion, which implies they are doing you a favour by being sincere. It’s overly ironic.

This is the reciprocation principle working in a lollapalooza effect:

…we should try to repay, in kind, what another person has provided us

The lollapalooza effect is…

multiple biases, tendencies or mental models acting in compound with each other at the same time in the same direction. With the Lollapalooza effect, itself a mental model, the result is often extreme, due to the confluence of the mental models, biases or tendencies acting together, greatly increasing the likelihood of acting irrationally.


The open-outcry auction is the probably the most idiotic way to purchase something (unless you can fight your subconscious biases).

Well the open-outcry auction is just made to turn the brain into mush: you’ve got social proof, the other guy is bidding, you get reciprocation tendency, you get deprival super-reaction syndrome, the thing is going away… I mean it just absolutely is designed to manipulate people into idiotic behavior.

The real estate broker will know that you have registered or logged in to their bidding site. I suspect they also know how many steps of the bidding process you have completed.