Why You Should be Hiring a Realtor to Sell Your House!
When you mention to your friends that you’ll be selling your home, one of them inevitably shares their success story about selling their home without a realtor and raves about the money they saved. After they tell you about the new hot tub they bought with their windfall, you start to wonder if you should be considering going it alone. After all, the number one reason for selling a house on your own is to save money by avoiding paying a commission to a realtor, right?
But…will you actually save money and, if you do, is it enough to make it worth it?
It’s true that selling a home without involving a realtor is becoming more common. Technology and the internet have been game-changers and the traditional real estate model is evolving to keep pace. With a click, you can access endless information and apps or watch a video that promises to teach you everything you need to know in 20 minutes or less.
Now that’s awesome if you need to change a leaky faucet. But selling a home is a complex process – it’s a legal transaction involving significant sums of money, and the learning curve is steep! Extensive knowledge and experience are needed to successfully navigate the process and avoid any pitfalls.
That’s where a realtor comes in! They use their expertise to sell your home quickly, and often negotiate deals that are higher than you would get on your own, even after paying a commission. Still not sure? Keep reading to learn even more about the value of working with a realtor!
What will a realtor do for you?
A great realtor can make selling a home look effortless, so it's easy to underestimate how much work they're doing behind the scenes!
They perform comparative market analyses, arrange professional listing photos and videos, advertise on multiple platforms, host open houses, manage showings, and follow up after showings. As if that wasn't enough, they also negotiate with potential buyers and take care of all the paperwork!
And here’s an important thing to keep in mind – you don’t pay for any of this! Your realtor invests their resources to market your home and they only get paid when your home sells, so you have nothing to lose!
Selling a Home Takes Time
Being a realtor is a full-time job – it’s rarely just a side gig. That’s because selling a house is a serious time commitment. Realtors work long hours, they need to be available day or night, and it can take days, weeks, or even months to close a deal.
Before you take on the role of part-time realtor, consider the following:
- Do you have the time to invest in marketing and showing a house?
- Do you have the flexibility to show your home to potential buyers at any time of the day or night?
- Can you manage the additional workload with your current personal and professional commitments?
If you’ve answered “no” to even one of these questions, you may want to reconsider your decision and leave the selling of your home to the experts.
Getting the Price Right
A home’s listing price is a critical factor for attracting buyers so it’s important to get it right. Price the home too high and you risk buyers not considering or even seeing the listing. Price it too low and you’re leaving money on the table.
Determining the right listing price is a bit of a science, based on data and trends, not on what you think your home is worth or how much money you need to walk away with. This is where a realtor really adds value! They know what’s happening in the local market, understand current trends, and have comparative market information that you don’t have access to.
Cornering the Market
You may have the most amazing home on the block, but no one will buy it if they don’t know it’s for sale! Effective marketing is critical to attracting the most potential buyers to your home. There are ways you can do it, but your options are limited in comparison to the tools and strategies your realtor can use to get the word out, including:
- Creating a compelling listing that showcases your home’s best features and turns shortcomings into strengths
- Promoting the listing in multiple ways to reach as many potential buyers as possible – MLS, emails, newsletters, company websites, and various social media platforms
- Planning and hosting one or more open houses
- Adding professional signage on your front lawn
They also have access to an extensive network of buyer's agents. You’ve probably never stopped to consider the value in this, but a significant amount of home sales are actually the result of realtors just talking with each other!
Negotiating the Best Deal
Good negotiation skills can be the difference between making or losing thousands of dollars, so selling your home is one of those times to count on an expert!
Realtors know how to negotiate - they do it every day! When a realtor is on your team, they're using their skills to get the best offer for you. And remember, your realtor will be negotiating with the buyer's equally-skilled realtor. You might think you have what it takes to get the best price for your home, but it will be hard for you to compete with someone who has spent countless hours at the negotiating table.
Your realtor also has a fiduciary duty to negotiate on your behalf. They’re professionally obligated to provide guidance and advice that benefits you and helps you make the right decisions. And because it’s not their home, they aren’t emotionally invested in the outcome. They'll be objective and can focus on getting you the best possible price for your home!!
Working Through the Details
Selling a home is usually an emotional decision for homeowners, but it's also a legal transaction that requires several documents to be filled out accurately and on time! The details matter - even a minor mistake can cost you time and money or cause a sale to fall through.
Realtors get up close and personal with these documents every day, so they know how to do things right. They stay up to date through regular education and training and have access to the collective experience of their colleagues if they need a second set of eyes!
There’s little to no room for error when selling a home. Before you decide to sell your home, think about whether you’ll be able to get things right and consider if what you might gain is worth the risk.
Keeping Things Honest
So, what does that mean and why should you care?
Using a realtor gives you peace of mind that the sale of your home will go smoothly and that you’ll be protected in the unlikely event something does go wrong!
First, all realtors in Alberta need to be licensed, which means they undergo annual education and training. In addition to passing a criminal background check, they must meet high standards of conduct to avoid facing sanctions or disciplinary action by RECA.
But most importantly, when you use a realtor, you’re protected against financial losses due to fraud, breach of trust, or failure to account for money held in trust under the Consumer Protection Fund.
The Bottom Line
Selling a house is a huge undertaking with serious financial implications. Choosing to go it alone is an option, and it’s possible you’ll be successful, but it isn’t easy and there are risks! Selling a home can feel a little overwhelming but it doesn't have to be a stressful experience, so before you make your decision, talk to our team. We're happy to answer your questions and help you choose the path that works for you!