Appraised Value: Agents are experts in dealing with appraisals
(a continuing source of failed contracts, even in this improving market) and
are able to provide additional information and comparables to the appraiser
which can often help achieve a higher value.
3. Legal Risk: Did you know that For Sale by Owner
transactions are the number one source of real estate lawsuits? Would you represent yourself in a court of
law? Failure to properly complete
disclosures and unfamiliarity with the complexity of current Georgia real
estate laws, contracts and forms (they change yearly, by the way), fair housing
laws, etc., can end up causing you legal problems down the road. Licensed real estate
agents are required to stay up to date on all mandatory local, state and
4. Strangers in your
home: Do you really want to expose your family, your
home and your possessions to the risk of inviting unscreened, non-prequalified
strangers to your home? The "For
Sale By Owner" sign and homeowner
ads bring a great many lookers who are not really qualified to buy, wasting the
owner's time and perhaps losing a real prospect, and cause an inconvenience to
the seller who must be available for these showings. Realtors bring only buyers that are
prequalified and for whom your home has been selected as one that meets their
requirements for price, location and type of home.
5. Reluctance to deal
directly with owners – Ask yourself a
question: Would you rather do half the
work on a transaction--or twice the work?
Buyer’s agents prefer to show listings where they know there’s
another professional representing the other side of the transaction—someone who
knows the legalities, processes and true market value of the property. It’s much more stressful and time-consuming
to negotiate items like appraisal value, inspection items, special stipulations
and other details of the transaction with a non-represented seller, who is
often too emotionally involved be objective about their home.
6. Lack of Marketing Experience - Many sellers are not practiced in the art of promotion, and don’t possess a great deal of knowledge or perspective when it comes to marketing real estate. Many of the marketing avenues agents use are costly and require resources that the average homeowner just doesn't possess. Savvy know the techniques to make your home competitive with comparable properties in the local marketplace.
7. “Low-Ballers”: For Sale by Owner
listings often attract buyers “looking for a deal” (who factor in the fact that the owner is not paying a listing agent commission into a much lower offering price) or “tire kickers”. There’s also a general perception that the owner
has probably overpriced their home, since they're not being advised by an agent.
8. Lack of Follow-up
- Homes are frequently sold on second visits which have been brought about by
the real estate agent. A listing agent
will have an electronic record of every buyer’s agent that has shown the home,
and be able to maintain communication with those agents about their buyers’
interest, and give that feedback to the seller.
9. Lack of Network: Do you have a
network of resources for mortgage lenders, closing attorney services,
surveyors, home inspectors, handymen, pest control companies, etc.? Agents do—our vendor list is one of our most
10. Stale Listing: If an owner fails to sell their home in a
timely fashion as a consequence of any of the factors above, it becomes what is
known as a “stale listing". Buyers will always ask, "How long has
this home been on the market?”, expecting a discount if it’s been longer than
average, and agents start to avoid showing the home, thinking that something
must be “wrong” with the home--or it would have already sold. This invariably results in the owner having
to lower the price in order to finally get it sold.
There is a
reason that 85% of For Sale by Owners eventually list with a real
estate agent. Even in a “seller’s
market”, only listings that look great, are priced competitively and marketed aggressively
will sell quickly and for top dollar. You
may be able sell your home yourself, but you’ll never know what price you could have gotten through the increased
exposure that listing with a full service broker would have provided! Bottom line: You’ll get more and better
qualified buyers by using a realtor.