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Cassandra Ritone's Blog

By Cassandra Ritone | Agent in West Hartford, CT
  • Why Should You Use a Realtor to Sell your Home?

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Connecticut, Home Selling in Connecticut, Financing in Connecticut  |  June 21, 2012 9:16 PM  |  91 views  |  No comments

    Selling a house on your own is a tempting financial alternative to using a Realtor.  I mean, come on, saving 5 or 6% on the final offer and easily do all the work yourself?  You can just throw a sign in your yard with your phone number, and tons of people driving by will call you and offer you money for your home.  Paperwork shmaperwork!

    I know it seems easy, but really think about it.  Those people driving by know you are not using a Realtor and realize they can get a good deal since you are saving by not using an agency, so there goes some “saved money” anyway.  Also, anyone can contact you and walk into your home.  They are not pre-qualified like the buyers an agent will bring to you, and you are risking your safety by letting strangers into your home.

    Not to mention, if you come to an agreement with someone, you have a lot of work to do.  The beginning agreement is the first part of a whole process of appraisals, inspections, and financing.  There are many things that can and do go wrong with this process if you don’t know what you are doing.  An agent can help you write a legal contract, with popular negotiation and contingency techniques that will be more likely to make it through to the closing process.

    An agent has better real estate marketing tools than you do.  Period.  They have agent open houses, cooperative marketing networks, and the multiple listing service which allows agents to cooperatively work with other agents in finding buyers and sellers for their properties.  This is statewide so agents across the state can sell your house to their buyers.  Over 50% of real estate sales are cooperative sales.  Financially, if you were to advertise in every newspaper across the state, it would cost a pretty penny, plus this will create calls but usually not buyers.  The National Association of Realtors® studies show that 82% of real estate sales are the result of agent contacts through previous clients, referrals, friends, family and personal contacts.  If you are thinking of free advertising, a lot of homeowners are using Craigslist now which is free, but again, these people are unqualified strangers that you are inviting into your home.  Also, those types of websites have a ton of spam nowadays so buyers are skeptical.

    As a Realtor, I deal with a ton of paperwork, and am constantly on the phone with attorneys, mortgage companies, home inspectors, contractors, other agents, buyers, and sellers.  Do you have a lot of time in your day, good with people, know how to negotiate, and are you good with paperwork?  I hope so if you are considering selling on your own.  You most likely will end up netting less than on your home than what you would have if you had used a Realtor anyway.  So, with that said, we can agree that the commission to an agent is well worth every cent.

    Let’s look at it this way…the average home sale is $300,000.  If you had a tax issue, a legal issue, or financial obligation that was $300,000 more or less, would you risk dealing with it without the help of an accountant or an attorney?  I hope you wouldn’t and I hope you don’t take the same risks when you could have prevented an issue or the loss of a sale or legal issues for just a small cost.  Bottom line, it's a good idea to use an expert or you may be kicking yourself later on.

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