When buying or selling a home, avoiding a real estate agent’s commission may sound tempting. With today’s widely available resources, you might be left wondering: “Do I need a Realtor to sell my house?” But there’s a reason 87% of home buyers use a real estate agent.
The allure of selling your home without a real estate agent is deceiving. Although some have gone this route and been successful, more often than not, it leads to many unforeseen headaches. Selling your home requires time, knowledge of neighborhood trends, and negotiating skills.
If you’re still wondering whether you should use a real estate agent, consider the following 15 reasons why you should use a Realtor when buying or selling your home.
1.Realtors prevent random strangers from showing up at your front door
Do you enjoy unexpected visitors interrupting dinner? Probably not. Most people don’t appreciate unexpected strangers at the front door. But if you’re selling your home on your own this should be expected.
But a real estate agent will prevent random strangers from showing up unannounced. Your agent handles all home showings to ensure they fit your schedule and you’ve had a chance to prepare your home.
An agent makes home showing more comfortable for both the seller and the buyer. Sitting at the kitchen table while someone tours your home can be uncomfortable for both you and the potential buyer. Some buyers may be uneasy looking at your house while you’re there. They might feel inhibited discussing features they don’t like.
2.Realtors have education and experience
You may assume finding everything you need to know about real estate is as simple as firing up an online search engine. But a Realtor will provide you with industry knowledge you simply won’t find online. When you hire a real estate agent you don’t need to know everything about buying and selling real estate.
3.Realtors provide price guidance
Knowing how to price your home can be difficult. And if you’re buying a home, how do you know you’re getting the best value? An agent will help you to make the right choice whether you’re selling or buying a home.
Your selling agent will provide you with all the relevant data and guide you to the best price. Once you’ve decided on a price, your agent will develop a negotiation strategy based on market supply, market demand, and the current conditions.
4.Realtors help you prepare your home to sell
Your house is your home and there may be things you overlook in preparing it to sell. But an experienced real estate agent will help you prepare your house for the market. Your agent can suggest improvements to help it sell as well as point out any housing-code or zoning violations.
5.Realtors provide a buffer
Whether you’re building a home, buying a home, or selling a home, you may be susceptible to real estate spam. Your Realtor will filter unwanted phone calls and prevent “time wasters” from taking over your open house. Your agent will be your first line of defense, preventing needless frustrations from getting the best of your buying or selling experience.
6.Realtors are a valuable resource
There’s a lot of people involved in the process of buying or selling a home. But you can count on your Realtor knowing someone for every step of the process. Mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, and interior designers are just a few. Your agent prevents you from having to find all these resources on your own.
7.Realtors prevent you from wasting time
Without an agent, you could waste countless hours searching for homes. Sure, you can scour the internet for listings, drive around town looking at homes for sale, and attend countless open houses, but you don’t have time for that. An agent has the tools, resources, and knowledge to make your home buying process as efficient and stress-free as possible.
An agent also has access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). The MLS is a database of current homes for sale. By hiring an agent, your home’s information will be available to other agents in your area. And if you’re purchasing a home, they can search the MLS to locate properties you might be interested in.
8.Realtors have negotiation skills
An often overlooked difficulty with selling your own home is your emotional connection to it. But a selling agent is able to remove the emotional element from the transaction. With an agent, you get more than a mediator between the buyer and seller – you get an advocate negotiating on your behalf. A top producing agent will negotiate with your best interests in mind while ensuring your information remains confidential from any competing parties.
9.Realtors have neighborhood knowledge
Agents possess in-depth knowledge of the neighborhoods you consider moving into. And in the case they’re unfamiliar, they know how to get the industry information of the prospective neighborhood. Your Realtor provides a wealth of knowledge such as comparable sales, information on schools, and other key demographics. Maybe you want to know why that home down the street has been on the market so long – your agent can tell you why.
10.Realtors provide market information
There are many factors that impact the buying and selling process such as the average per square foot cost of similar homes, median and average sales prices, average days on market, and ratios of list-to-sold prices just to name a few of the criteria. Your agent will inform you of all the market conditions that will control your buying and selling process. Their job is to help you understand this data and how it will ultimately impact your decision.
11.Realtors know professional service providers
When you’re new in town, or a first time home buyer, knowing who to use for certain services can be difficult. Although your realtor won’t be able to recommend one specific service provider, he or she can provide 2-3 referrals for mortgage lending, home inspections, or insurance agents to ensure you have a trusted professional handling every detail of your transaction.
12.Realtors will handle the paperwork
One of the most daunting aspects of the home buying process is the large amount of paperwork. Today’s real estate files are massive volumes of paperwork ranging from one to three inches thick. That’s a lot of paperwork! And to make this mountain of paperwork even more intimidating, one mistake or omission can send you to court or force you to pay thousands in fines. Do yourself a favor and leave it to a professional.
13.Realtors must follow a code of ethics
Since its inception in 1913, the National Association of Realtors has followed a code of ethics. These standards are maintained to ensure ethical practices are used throughout the industry. On a practical level, these guidelines provide peace of mind for the home buyer or seller.
14.Realtors answers questions
The majority of real estate transactions go through without a problem. But if any difficulties arise with your home purchase or sale, your agent is there to help.
Even after the transaction complications and questions may arise. But thankfully your real estate agent is one call away to straighten it all out. A Realtor doesn’t abandon you once you’re in your new home. A Realtor is ready to answer your questions at every point along the way.
15.Realtors will maintain your relationship
An agent’s ongoing success depends upon referrals and lasting relationships. A satisfied home buyer or seller the goal for every good broker.This objective motivates them to ensure your satisfaction. Maintaining this relationship benefits your agent and yourself as future real estate needs arise.
Maybe you’re confident enough to handle the sale or purchase of your home without a Realtor. But with so many potential risks is it worth it? Without a Realtor, you might be left wondering: “Did I pay too much?” or “Did I accept too little?” Save yourself the time and headache and hire a Realtor the next time you buy or sell a home.