Why Do It Alone?

real estate agent

When you break a bone, you go to the doctor.  When you have a cavity, you go to the dentist.  If you have a pipe that is leaking, you call a plumber.  You get my drift here?  So, when you need to buy or sell real estate, why wouldn’t you call a real estate agent?

There are many people that try to avoid working with a professional in real estate.  Some reasons to do so may be to avoid paying the agent, it may not guarantee you save money and the thought that you just might be able to do it all alone!  Here me out, I am all about saving money—but does that really need to be the deciding factor when going about one of the biggest transactions you’ll ever make?

Real estate agents are professionals in their field.  They went to school for what they do, invested a lot into their line of work (time, money, other sacrifices), had to pass exams (state and national) in order to obtain their license, complete continuing education requirements, and SO much more!  Trust me, they do not make it easy to get a real estate license.  Each licensee is unique and has put in a lot of hard work for what they do.

If you are thinking about buying a property and want to go about the search alone, you may not catch the things a real estate professional would.  Also, a real estate professional is not only there to assist you in finding a property, but they should be there every step of the way—like helping you with finding lenders to speak to to figure out what you can afford, the negotiation process, inspections, appraisals, understanding all of the paperwork involved and more.  It is especially important if you are interested in purchasing a “For Sale by Owner” property.  The seller may have a listing price of what they want out of the property without accurately analyzing the market and comparable properties.  If you did not have an agent looking out for your best interests, you could be overpaying for a property that may also have hidden issues.  Now back to the whole saving money ordeal, buyers typically do not pay the real estate agents commission.

If you are trying to sell a property on your own for one of the reasons I discussed earlier, read the last few sentences of the paragraph above.  People truly do have a fear of purchasing from the seller directly for those reasons.  Real estate agents are meant to be the middleman, providing full disclosure to all parties and providing you with an accurate market analysis to market your home in the right price range to attract buyers.  Different real estate agents or REALTORS® have various services they offer to their clients or customers.  That is why it is important to talk with multiple before deciding on one, that way you can see which one you get along with and will provide you and your home with the most resources.  Yes, the seller does typically pay the commission, but this should not be the reason you do not work with an agent.  If your home can be marketed to more people than you can do alone, you can try to avoid legal issues, actually understand the process and paperwork involved, your home sells faster than you expected, and maybe even for more money than you anticipated, I’d say it is well worth it to work with an agent.

The point is, do not totally discount using a real estate agent and the importance of doing so before doing some research and actually talking to a few of them first.  Just because you talk to some does not mean you have signed a contract.  It is OK to check around and see what all they have to offer. 🙂