Anyone have any recommendations for a realtor in St. Charles? What is typical commission in the area? We are debating using FSBO vs an agent. Advice?

Asked by Laura, Sun Aug 28, 2011

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Jane Spooner, Agent, St Louis, MO
Thu Dec 22, 2011
Having a good agent to help you get the best possible price for your home is worth every penny you'll pay in commission. Just make sure to interview at least 3 or 4 agents and ask them the right questions. Are they full time agents? How many homes have they sold in the area? Will they use a staging consultant to help you make sure your house is ready to go? Will they use a professional photographer? How will they market your home? How will your home be marketed on the internet? Can they provide references?

I'd love to talk with you. Jane Spooner, Keller Williams Realty, 314-677-6434.
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Vernae/Nell…, Agent, Hazelwood, MO
Sun Dec 18, 2011
Laura, each of those who responded did it well. The only thing I will add is for you interview 3 - 5 people. Your gut feeling will tell you who you want. We all have the same skills and desires for you to sell your home. You must make the choice, we advertise, market and work extremely hard for our clients.

Good luck to whom ever you choice. Remember, the house must be priced right in this market. It must appraise and Buyers are looking for a deal, no matter what location.

Oh, by the way, I would not mind being one of those people you interview. Have a great day!
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Global Real…, , Crown Point, IN
Mon Sep 5, 2011
You can have the best of both worlds by going through a flat fee broker.
Homeowners can’t sell their homes for two main reasons:
1. Price is too high
2. Not being marketed enough.
Over 80% of buyers search the internet for homes. Our flat fee listing program gives the best of both worlds. You can list your property on the local MLS by a licensed realtor in your area and only pay a flat fee and you only pay the selling broker a commission if he/she finds the buyer. If you find the buyer, you pay nothing more.
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Holder Real…, Agent, Menlo Park, CA
Tue Aug 30, 2011
Hi Laura.

You should check out Trulia's Find a Pro Directory. You can see agents who have been recommended by other home buyers and sellers, read reviews, and help you find 1 or more Realtors to talk to.
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Dale Weir, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Any Realtor who answers your inquiry, will of course tell you that they and their company are the best - would you want someone who told you they weren't the best?

Each of us brings a slightly different personality to the mix, along with slightly different skills, knowledge, experience, background, negotiating skills, and marketing skills. We all have a wide array of tools to offer you, MANY of which we get through our Board and our MARIS multi-listing system so EVERY Realtor has access to them (such as listing book and a huge variety of feeds and links to on line websites where they can post the information on your home, though some are more comfortable and familiar with using the tools then others. At the same time, we also through our various companies have tools and marketing agreements that our companies have contracted for to help make their agents more productive, improve their marketing and help to sell homes (Coldwell Banker Gundaker, for example, has lead router, smarter agent and additional marketing agreements with many websites to enhance their listings, as well as agreements with more websites). Many Realtors also purchase different tools themselves to help market their listings (such as enhancing their listings further on the different websites).

The important thing is to find a Realtor who you are comfortable working with, who you trust, and who you are willing to listen to.

A good Realtor will help to educate you at the start on the home selling process and what you can expect. They'll review with you what inspections you are responsible for and when you need to do them. They'll go over the contract with you in advance so you know what to expect when a contract comes in along with building inspections. They'll cover expected timelines with you. A good agent doesn't tell you what price to put on your home, they work with you to set a marketing strategy to get your home sold that includes price, terms, condition, and a realistic look at what your competition is and what has been selling in your area. They will discuss needed repairs and updates and the price points that the home will get based on selling "as is", with some basic repairs and cosmetics, and with some updates - depending on your home. They will educate you on appraisals and what happens when a home doesn't appraise. When they are done, you will be able to make informed, logical, realistic decisions. Part of those decisions revolve around commission rates. Commissions are split between the 2 brokerages involved (the one listing the property and the one which brings the buyer to the table), and the 2 Realtors. You are marketing your home, not just to the end buyer but to the Realtor who is bringing that buyer to you. Your Realtors job doesn't stop there though, they help you to negotiate the best terms for you (price is only one term), and to keep the many details on track to get to a smooth closing. 90% of what a good Realtor does, is done between getting a contract offer and getting the home to closing. And yes, statistics show that using a Realtor does net you more money as well as increase the chance that you will get to a smooth closing with a lot less stress.

I'd be happy to provide you with a sellers consultation if that would help you.
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Lisa Rozier, Agent, Saint Louis, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Hi Laura,

I work the St. Charles area. The typical commission is 6 to 6.5%. My advice on selling your home yourself is although it can be don,e the amount of advertising dollars and time and worry in selling yourself can become overwhelming. Unless your home is priced very low the time on the market can be considerably longer than when listed with a competant agent. Please feel free to give me a call at 314-504-7903. I'm more than happy to direct you and answer addtional questions you may have. I'm happy to provide references in your area. Have a great day! Lisa
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Greg Bowen, Agent, Town and Country, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Hi Laura:

All good questions....and I will try to answer them below:

1) Question: Anyone have any recommendations for a realtor in St. Charles?

Answer: If I was going to put my home on the market today, I would recommend myself. At Prudential, we are the #1 locally owned real estate company in the Saint Louis area. Based on the 2011 Real Trends 500, Prudential Real Estate has the highest average sales price, beating the nearest competitor by over $32,000. Prudential Select Properties also out performs the market, our closed residentials units are up 15.2% over last year (Jan thru July), but our largest competitor is down 15.75% and the entire MLS is down 10.5%.

2) Question: What is typical commission in the area?

Answer: Typically 6%.

3) Question : We are debating using FSBO vs an agent. Advice?

Answer: Laura, statistics show that only 14% of FSBO reach a sucessful closing and 89% of today's buyers are online. We have exposure through Yahoo, Trulia, Zilow, MSN, Google and many more. Selling your home is mostly about exposure, we have it. I hope some of this has helped. If I can be of any further assistance, you can reach me at the below number. Thank you.....
I would love to earn your business!

Greg Bowen
Direct : 314-540-1978
Office: 636-779-1100
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Terry Willis, Agent, O Fallon, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Hi Laura,

You can't change the facts. Talk to people who are FSBO's now to see how long they have been on the market and if they have had any realistic offers. Talk to Realtors to see how many of their clients today are yesterdays FSBO's or expired listings from discount brokerages. Check the statistics for scammers on Craigslist who will advertise and collect the deposit or earnest money for your home and run off - just slightly lower than the number of companies that will puyt you in the MLS for a flat fee and then do nothing for you so at the end of the contract you still have a house to sell. Are you really willing to cancel your plans at the last minute for a buyer who may or may not show up? Today's market needs the expertise of a Realtor, which shall be referred to as "I" in this answer.

I earn every penny of my commission. I have taken classes to sharpen my negotiating and marketing skills. I keep up to date on all of the new technological advances and web sites to assist with selling your home. I have promised as a Realtor to treat you fairly and honestly. I always keep my promises to you as I rely on my clients of today to send me my clients of tomorrow. Almost 70% of my clients are referrals, there has to be a good reason for that. I represent you, not the paperwork as a Transaction Brokerage does.

To get the marketing exposure and the selling price that a Realtor can give you could cost you more than you would pay in their commission, depending on the value of your home. If you have a high end home to sell FSBO is NOT the way to go unless you don't really plan on selling it for a long time.

Your best interests are always my main concern. If I can't protect my commission and my interests, how can you believe and rightly expect that I would protect you and your best interests? This is a business where you truly get what you pay for. You owe it to yourself to at least interview and research some Realtors before you make such an important decision. Check out my marketing techniques on my web site and then price them for yourself, without forgetting to put a value on your time. or expertise. I am adding You Tube video's to my marketing also.

Good luck and all the best to you.

Terry Willis, Realtor PIC, CSN, NCC
Prudential Select Properties
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Bob Waters, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Good question and I can appreciate your concern over how best to sell your house.
There are currently 2,387 homes listed for sale throughout Saint Charles County, not including for sale by owner properties otherwise known as FSBO's. How will your house match up? How are you going to compete? If you ask too much, you will not have anyone show up. If you ask too little, you may leave money on the table. In these tough times it is about getting it right from the beginning when you have the greatest chance of success. Days on market can be your biggest enemy and is usually a result of having a house that is overpriced and or not ready for market.
If you want to talk with an agnet that has experience in Saint Charles Co. you can contact me and set an appointment. I will be glad to talk with you further about your particlar situation and plan accordingly.
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Kate Ball, , Saint Louis, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
I concur with Alicia and Gary: going it alone can be more challenging than you realize. Most owners spend their time on traditional methods of marketing (newspaper, yard sign, open houses, etc.), but research show less than 1/4 of home buyers find the homes they purchase by those methods. You will probably save time and money if you work with someone who already has proven marketing methods in place.

Definately talk with more than one agent. It's a very intense relationship you will have with this person. Even though you will hopefully not work together for more than a few months, the emotions attached to the interactions run very high--we're talking about your HOME and your FUTURE! Choose someone you feel is both knowledgeable and can withstand the pressure. Prudential Alliance is a great company, with one of the highest agent productivity numbers in the entire metro area. If I were in St. Charles, I would talk with Donnie Wieland, Terri Sutton, or Steve Roth.

Hope that helps!
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Gregg Sharpe, Agent, Saint Louis, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Hi Laura, I work with RE/MAX Gold in St. louis and we have an office right in St. Charles that would love to help you. They are most helpful and will show you why RE/MAX was just named best overall real estate company by buyers and sellers.

Gregg Sharpe
314 566-8778 (C)
314 329-7850 (F)
636 444-9500 (O)
You Tube: Â
Soulard Office: 2200 S. 12th Street, St. Louis, MO 63104
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Joan Braunsc…, , Morris County, NJ
Sun Aug 28, 2011
Of course most agents don't want to encourage the FSBO route but I believe that as long as you educate yourself thoroughly, pay a flat fee broker to post on the mls, price the house right, take great pictures, make the house sparkle and easy to show and advertise a competitive rate for the buyer's agent you have a chance to save yourself some money.
Don't listen to the You Get What You Pay For because its utter nonsense. Yes, some brokerages offer a menu of services which may save you money at a cost of service but that is something that should be clearly spelled out.
Some agents offer a competitive rate because they want your business. This is good business, not a lack of negotiation skills. If you can offer the same or better service at a great price and get more business this way, this shows an agent who is willing to do what is sometimes necessary these days to get a listing.
That being said, I agree that you should choose an agent based on the agent (and their brokerage) not their commission.
Here is a great blog from a non agent which will tell you everything you need to know about doing a FSBO:

Well worth taking the time to read.
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Alicia Clark…, , Saint Charles County, MO
Sun Aug 28, 2011
There are many great Realtors in St. Charles, so you should talk to 2 or 3 and pick the one you trust and are most comfortable with. Although commission is important to you, I strongly suggest you don't rely solely on commission quotes to make your decision. If a Realtor is willing to be talked down on their commission, does that suggest that's how they'll handle negotiations on your behalf? Also, listen to the Realtors you interview and review all of the comps you receive before you decide how to price your home and which Realtor you will hire. You may feel you need to net a certain amount, but you will sit on the market if you price yourself higher than the competition. If one Realtor agrees to price it where you want to be, but the comps suggest that is too high, I suggest going with the Realtor that gave you the cold hard facts and isn't budging!

The decisions, obviously, are going to be yours. Do your home work and determine what will satisfy your goals in the time frame you need to reach them. Approximately 90% of FSBOs hire a Realtor after 30 days on the market. If you don't have time to play around & feel the market out, I suggest biting the bullet and hiring a Realtor. Price, Location, Condition, and exposure will sell your home... or not!

I would love to hear from you and discuss your situation further. Please call or email if you would like the same.

Alicia Clark
Keller Williams Realty West
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Gary Geer, Agent, Antioch, IL
Sun Aug 28, 2011
There are no set commissons. Contact a few agents in your area and ask them what they charge. This is a very tough market to sell your home yourself. You may actually sell your home for more money and have fewer problems if you use an agent. Agents get the exposure for your home that you can't get as a FSBO.

All the best,
Gary Geer
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