There are an awful lot of factors that go into selling a property. Some more budget-minded sellers seek to minimize the amount of the sale price taken ‘off the top’ at closing- and may even be successful- but it is nonetheless important to consider every avenue of time and money that must be invested to market and sell a home. Let’s discuss five of the many reasons to work with a licensed real estate agent when buying and/or selling a home.
4 Benefits of Working with a Real Estate Agent
In Your Corner
As Randy Newman once said: “It’s a Jungle out there”, and it can be immensely valuable to have a real estate professional in your corner. One of the items in your agent’s primary job description is to help his or her clients navigate the sometimes-complicated legal requirements of selling a home. One of their primary jobs is to become experts on the geographical area they are serving in, as well as understanding the art of contract negotiation to hammer out the details and maximize the profit as much as possible on your end. Like a championship boxer, sometimes you just need to ring the bell and take a moment in the corner of the arena with people you trust- like your agent.
“Money Money Money!!!”
Your real estate agent is bound by both law and honor to act as your fiduciary agent. In plain English, it’s their job to help you make the best financial decision for you and your family when the deal goes down. Plus, they’re usually paid commission, so why wouldn’t they want to maximize what you walk away with from the deal?
Agent-listed homes sell for an average of 18% more than FSBO (For Sale by Owner) homes. This can be a difference of over $30,000 at a final closing cost of 200k. Another interesting statistic: half of the people who sell their homes without an agent will end up with a lower selling price. Does this mean that selling with or without an agent is foolproof 100% of the time? No, but nowhere in life is anything 100% certain.
Simplifying the Process (aka Who Likes Doing Paperwork?!?)
I hope I don’t offend any accountants, lawyers, executive assistants, or any other valued members of the business and finance world with my next point. However, newsflash, normal people don’t enjoy drowning in paperwork. Thankfully your real estate agent will take care of all of that for you. Whether it comes to drafting a listing agreement, writing marketing copy for MLS listings and brochures, or putting pen to paper on the closing contract; your agent has you covered. At most you’ll simply have to approve and sign any legally binding statements when the time comes.
It’s the Right Time.
A brief Disclaimer now seems necessary: The intent of this post was not to say that there is anything wrong with doing all the heavy listing for your home sale yourself. Come to think of it, my parents sold their home in Kalamazoo, Michigan via FSBO in the mid-1990’s and I don’t remember hearing them complain about the experience; nonetheless, that was the first and last time they sold a home that way! Your time is very valuable and allowing a licensed real estate agent to take care of it for you is a great way to remove the stress and headaches that can present themselves during a move.
2015 saw the lowest share of FSBO sales since 1981, with only 8% of homes sold via that method. Similarly, the most recent data we have demonstrates that 89% of sellers used an agent to sell their previous home. Again, this does not mean that there’s anything wrong with selling By Owner, but all of us here at Dreamscape feel obligated to inform you that you could be caught at a disadvantage by doing so.