Step One: Decide whether or not you’ll be working with a real estate agent.
Almost 87% of the homes sold in any market are bought and sold through an agent.
Consider allowing a licensed agent over to perform a Real Estate Review before you get started to help determine the best path to help you reach your goals.
A good agent will provide multiple options, market data, recommendations and answer your questions.
If you’re going to work with an agent (and we suggest you do), be sure to find a person who is knowledgeable, truly capable, and someone you actually enjoy working with. The savings you’ll get and the information you’ll receive could result in you keeping thousands more dollars in your pocket.
Not all real estate agents are the same. In fact, neither are all doctors. There are providers that do a better job, take better care of you and provide you better value for their service.
This holds especially true when selling your home. Did you know that hiring the wrong real estate agent can cost you as much as 5% to 7% of the value of your home? That’s at least $5,000 for every $100,000 of value!
What’s worse, if you try to sell your home yourself, the National Association of Realtors says that you’ll give away as much as 18% of your equity.
How to choose the right real estate agent.
First, we think it’s important to understand the difference between Full Service and Limited Service Real Estate Firm’s, Teams, Buyer Agents, and Listing Agents. We’ve provided a brief summary of common choices below.
Full Service Real Estate Agents and Firms
They handle everything! Need help getting your home ready for the market? Looking for a financing recommendation? Need advice for how to price and stage your home? How about a list of preferred and vetted vendors or craftsmen to call on for that last minute punch list? Wondering who handles showings? What about the marketing or an open house? From your home prep to closing, these firms and agents will guide you, help minimize stress, and help you achieve your financial real estate goals. Need to buy a home before you sell? Need to sell before you buy? They can help with that too! Every step along the way, these folks are experts committed to saving you thousands of dollars with a lot of time and effort. While some cost more than others, there could be good reasons! Even amongst full service agencies, services can vary, so be sure to compare what you get before you make a decision.
Special Service Agents and Firms
The term “special” in the real estate world can be a bit misleading. In real estate, “special” actually means “limited” and a limited service or special service firm or agent may offer a specific or limited list of services. Think of it this way, full service is more like the service you receive (or expect to receive) with a 4 course meal and special service or “limited service” is like a fast casual or value menu. They may offer help as a buyer agent, listing agent, or both – but the degree to which they assist you may vary.
Flat Fee Listing Service
You may come across an agent who offers to list your home for flat fee. While this may sound like a great deal at first, the services that agents or firms offer can widely vary. These types of real estate firms or agencies may only provide services to list your home and do not usually have options to help you with your next purchase. Many offer to list your property in a MLS (Multiple Listing Service) which may also funnel your listing out to all the major online search sites like Zillow® or Realtor.com, but the services typically end there. They might offer to place a sign in your yard, provide a CMA (Comparable Market Analysis), host an open house, provide flyers, run marketing ads, or stage your home. In a lot of cases, those services are considered extra or may not be offered at all.
Instant Offer Service
Some firms and agents will make an “instant offer” on your home, thus eliminating most of the typical selling process. As a private homeowner, you are still in a position of power to negotiate on your own behalf. You can even hire a licensed real estate agent to represent your interests. It is recommended that you have your own representation to be sure you agree to terms favorable to your situation, ensure the transaction is compliant with federal and state laws, provide you with expert advice, and guide you throughout the entire process. Often times these types of services charge high rates and fees that result in you receiving much less for your home than you would have had you used a full service agent/firm or limited service agent to handle it all for you.
FSBO or FOR SALE BY OWNER
If you are a DIY kind of individual, go for it! But also be prepared to throw down some cash to market your home and prepare it to sell. This may include consideration for a commission offered to any buyer’s agents who present you an offer from qualified buyers.
How will I know what to list my home for?
This is one of the top questions real estate agents are commonly asked. In most cases, experienced real estate agents will perform a comparable market analysis to determine a range for your specific area. Real Estate is hyper local. Meaning, the price of your home is dependent upon many factors, including the immediate geographical area in which it resides. The most recent closed sales transactions that are the most similar to your property (the subject) are compared against your specific features to determine a range that the market, i.e buyers are willing to pay for a piece of real estate in that particular area.
Most agents will not tell you exactly how much you should sell your home for. Instead, good agents should provide you with the appropriate data to make it easy for you to understand and set a price that will help sell your home within a desirable time frame and for a sum reasonable for its condition and area.
Market conditions will vary geographically and seasonally.
We would love the opportunity to tell you more about what makes us stand out from the rest. Our team of agents and staff are committed to being the best in the industry. I’m confident that we’ll be able to meet your goals better and faster than any other agent in the area.
From there, we’ll schedule a no-cost, no-hassle consultation to review your specific situation and discuss what we do that other agents don’t do to get you the outcome you deserve.
All the best, Colette