Why Was This List Prepared?
Surveys show that many homeowners and homebuyers are not aware of the true value a REALTOR® provides during the course of a real estate transaction.
At the same time, regrettably, REALTORS® have generally assumed that the expertise, professional knowledge and just plain hard work that go into bringing about a successful transaction were understood and appreciated.
Many of the most important services and steps are performed behind the scenes by either the REALTOR® or the brokerage staff and traditionally have been viewed simply as part of their professional responsibilities to the client. But, without them, the transaction could be placed in jeopardy.
This publication seeks to close that gap.
The list is by no means an attempt to set forth a complete list of services as these may vary within each brokerage and each market. Many REALTORS® routinely provide a wide variety of additional services that are as varied as the nature of each transaction.
By the same token, some transactions may not require some of these steps to be equally successful. However, most would agree that given the unexpected complications that can arise, it’s far better to know about a step and make an intelligent, informed decision to skip it, than to not know the possibility even existed.
The REALTOR® Commitment
Through it all, the personal and professional commitment of the REALTOR® is to ensure that a seller and buyer are brought together in an agreement that provides each with a “win” that is fair and equitable.
The motivation is easy to understand. For most full-service brokerages, they receive no compensation unless and until the sale closes.
By contrast, there are firms that offer “limited services” in exchange for an up-front flat fee, or perhaps offer a menu of pay-as-you-go or “a Ia’ carte” options. Some even offer a sliding scale ranging from limited to full service. In these cases, the compensation of the REALTOR® is based on these reduced service levels with the seller bearing full responsibility for all the other steps and procedures in the selling process. In short, the marketplace truism is that “you get what you pay for.”
A Variety of Choices
The variety of brokerage business models in today’s real estate industry affords the homeowner a greater range of options than ever before.
But no matter which option is chosen, before signing a Listing Agreement or otherwise engaging the services of a REALTOR® and agreeing to compensate them, homeowners should understand exactly what services will, or will not, be provided.
Why Use A REALTOR®?
Not every real estate agent or broker is a REALTOR®. That term and the familiar Block “R” logo are trademarked by the National Association of REALTORS® and can only be used by those are REALTOR® members through their local association of REALTORS®.
While all REALTORS® are state-issued licensees as agents or brokers, the major difference between a “real estate licensee” and a REALTOR® is that REALTORS® have taken an oath to subscribe to a stringent, enforceable Code of Ethics with Standards of Practice that promote the fair, ethical and honest treatment of all parties in a transaction. Non-member licensees have taken no such oath and are not morally bound to the ethical practices and principles set for in the REALTOR® Code.
For that extra measure of peace of mind, ensure the individual seeking to represent you is both a real estate licensee and a REALTOR®.
The Critical Role of the REALTOR®
Depending on the transaction, some may take minutes, hours, or even days to complete, while some may not be needed.
More importantly, they reflect the level of skill, knowledge and attention to detail required in today’s real estate transaction, underscoring the importance of having help and guidance from someone who fully understands the process — a REALTOR®.
And never forget that REALTORS® are pledged to uphold the stringent, enforceable tenets of the REALTOR® Code of Ethics in their professional dealings with the public. Not every real estate licensee holds REALTOR® membership. Make sure yours does!