A “For Sale By Owner” (FSBO) may appear to be a great way to save thousands of dollars when selling your home. The standard Realtor’s commission is 5% to 6% – that’s $15,000 to $18,000 on a $300,000 home. Selling a house is a complex process. Realtors are skilled and experienced to walk sellers through every stage from setting a price to marketing the property to closing the sale. Here are seven reasons to use a Realtor to sell your home:
- Realtors Avoid Emotional Sales. Selling a home can be an emotional process. Hiring a Realtor keeps the seller one step removed and makes it less likely for easy mistakes to occur like overpricing the home, refusing to counter offer because the seller is offended or not being firm when a deadline is approaching. Realtors can communicate directly and rationally keeping the path to closing clear for all parties.
- Real Estate is a Full Time Job. Answering the phone, scheduling showings, seizing marketing opportunities and qualifying buyers is a very short list compared to the long list of full service items a Realtor does when taking on a listing.
- Realtors have professional networks. Realtors will network through past and current clients, share the listing with other agents and industry professionals in order to bring the largest pool of potential buyers to the property. This translates to a faster time on market and getting as much money for the bottomline.
- Qualifying buyers for the property. Realtors are trained to ask qualifying questions to determine seriousness, qualification and motivation of prospects. They can move a qualified and motivated person to purchase. Buyers say they feel awkward when a seller is present at a showing. Most buyers will rush through and can’t remember what they previewed. FSBO sellers lack the training and skill to facilitate the buyers’ needs.
- Realtors are great negotiators. A buyer’s agent will have the skill and experience to negotiate a home purchase, which could mean less money in a seller’s pocket. A Realtor has the experience to spot the warning signs of a disingenuous buyer. Realtors manage emotions during a sale. Sellers can be confident about making strong decisions when working with an agent.
- Realtors are experts at what makes a home sell. Some homeowners won’t admit their home has flaws. A Realtor can preview the home using a buyer’s perspective then suggest any changes, repairs or updates that will make the home stand out in the current market.
- Realtors identify legal risks. A seller can be held liable for fraud, negligence, or breach of contract if they do not disclose properly. After move-in, a buyer may choose to sue a seller if a hazard, nuisance or defect was not disclosed. Realtors can advise on how to handle any legal risks.
Selling a home is one of life’s biggest transactions. According to this list, hiring an agent has its advantages. Agents can get broader exposure for the property, help negotiate a better deal, dedicate more time to the sale, and prevent emotions from sabotaging it. An agent brings expertise, which few FSBO sellers have, to a complex transaction with many potential financial and legal pitfalls.