If you’ve never sold a home, you might not understand the complexities of what your agent provides for you. You could be tempted to sell your home on your own. After all, with the availability of the Internet, how hard could it be?
According to most research, FSBO (For Sale by Owner) nets a lower selling price than selling through a professional marketing agent. Even accounting for the commission paid to the agent, the profit to the homeowner is higher.
Some sellers believe that all an agent does it show the home a few times a week. Anyone can do that, right? But a great agent provides much more. Top agents offer a marketing strategy, professional staging, excellent photography, listing on the MLS and access to their network of buyer’s agents.
When you interview your agent, ask them what their plan is. How do they specifically intend to market your property? Who will they invite to the open house? Will they offer a unique open house just for their network of seller’s agents?
The greatest challenge to FSBO is how to price your home effectively. Yes, you can see what’s out there on Zillow and Trulia, but your agent has been in dozens of homes. They’ve spoken to hundreds of buyers. The single most damage you can do to a home sale is to price it wrong for the market and then have it languishing, unsold, for months.
Unless you’ve sold a home recently, you may not know all the paperwork involved in making the sale. You have the offer, counteroffers and the acceptance letter. Then there’s the negotiation over items that come up in the inspection. If the buyer wants a warranty, do you know where to go for that? What if the buyer wants a contingency? Do you know how to write that up so that you’re not left holding the bag? Do you have a relationship with a title office or escrow officer? Your agents’ broker does.
When you add up all the work they do, and the expertise they offer, you’ll see that your agent is worth the commission. If you follow their advice, you can be off on your next venture, and they’ll take care of the sale for you.