Do I have to be an agent to list my home?

Asked by Dee Tyson, 92530 Wed Feb 20, 2008

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Marlene Sche…, Agent, Bremerton, WA
Sun Mar 9, 2008
You don't need to be an agent to sell your own home. However, if you want it listed in the MLS, advertised in places like HomesNLand, Broker's Opens, etc. you would be wise to consider hiring a Realtor. Make sure it is a Realtor, not just an agent. There is a difference. Also, consider talking to an agent who is a staging professional, or can hire one for you. If you are going to sell in our current market, you need to price aggressively, market extensively, and stage perfectly. Let me know if there is any other way I can help you, good luck!
Marlene Scheffer
1 vote
Samuel Hilbe…, , Woodinville, WA
Wed Feb 20, 2008
Dee -

Rhonda did put it well. Either way though...even if you do "sell" and not "list" your home...I would advise you to hire an attorney who specialize in real estate transactions to assist in the paperwork. You will be thankful you did!

Good luck!
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1 vote
Edna Allen, , Cy-Fair Office
Wed Feb 20, 2008
You do not have to be an agent to list your home for sale, however, it would be wise for you to enlist the services of a professional real estate agent in your area. In today's world the complexities of selling your home to the best advantage is not totally understood by the average homeowner. The agent will advise you in presenting your home to it's best advantage by decluttering, moving furniture to show a room to its potential, making the exterior inviting looking and adveritising efficiently. Edna
1 vote
., , 98110
Thu Feb 10, 2011
It's true that you don't have to be a licensed Realtor to sell your property. However, it's important to keep in mind that working with an experienced professional can actually save you money and help you avoid potentially expensive litigation costs that can arise when the parties don't understand local rules and regulations. That's just one reason for getting expert advice and help with your transaction -- whether it be a real estate attorney or a licensed Realtor. The other comments in this thread point out many of the other advantages of working with an experienced Realtor. I hope you'll consider working with an expert.
Best of luck!.
0 votes
Tainted, , California
Tue Jan 12, 2010
Why do you internet looneys answer stupid questions like Dee Tysons? Get a life and get off the freakin internet. LIVE...Life is not staring and typing on a computer all day. What a looser society we are becoming. I feel sorry for all of you. BRING ON 2012 ALREADY!
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Kimt, , 92530
Wed Oct 28, 2009
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Dave Jones,…, , Silverdale, WA
Wed Mar 12, 2008
Hi Dee: You do not have to be a licensed real estate agent to sell your own home. But the real answer to your question might be: "am I ready and willing to try to do this by myself to see if I can get the job done?"

There's some level of risk involved selling real property. You just have to decide if you're willing to take that risk.
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Andee Bemrose, Agent, Kailua Kona, HI
Mon Mar 10, 2008
WOW Dee,
You got bombarded. the overwhelming answer that as the owner of your home, you have the legal right to sell it without help from anyone. One of the best places to get ideas fot marketing it, or to really check out what an agent could do for you, might be to call 3 local agents and ask them to do a comparitive market analysis of your home, and to present how they would list it. Maybe one would be full service, one a "help-U-Sell" agency, and one, a discount realtor. If you still want to sell it yourself after seeing the plans, you'll have some good estimates for pricing it, and some great marketing ideas.
Good Luck!
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J, , Atlanta, GA
Wed Feb 20, 2008
Dee, you DO NOT have to be a real estate agent to sell your own home. It does help to have as much real estate business knowledge as possible, be connected with a good real estate law firm and have contacts in the real estate business. Most of us have a family member in the real estate business. Your marketing options are many, including web sites like Now for sale by owners can have an affordable virtual tour of their homes for sale online for the world to see...think of it like an OPEN HOUSE on the Internet 24 hours a day! Before you open your home to strangers tell interested parties to go online and tour your home on line FIRST! Build an on line flyer too... a very professonal handout! You can also encourage real estate agents to bring you a contract, provided you are willing to pay a negoitated selling commision! Good Luck!
0 votes
Rhonda Olnick, Agent, Olympia, WA
Wed Feb 20, 2008
Hi Dee - You do not have to be an agent to list your home. If you want it "listed" on a multiple listing service, you will have to pay someone to do that for you - someone who is a cooperating member of that service.
If you just want to "sell" your house, you can do so by putting a For Sale By Owner sign in your yard and contact a title/escrow company to handle the paperwork.

Of course being an agent I would advise you to hire someone as they can help you through the sea of paperwork, answer all your questions and best of all the agent will pay for all the advertising expenses associated with marketing your home. Good luck!
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Aaron Hofmann, Agent, Marietta, GA
Wed Feb 20, 2008
If by listing your home, you actually mean being a Realtor, then yes you need to be an agent. Otherwise you either need to hire a listing service or hire a Realtor. There are many options available to you today to market your home at varying price points. In most markets, there are now discount listing services that will input your listing in the multiple listing service.

Being a Realtor, I would, however, recommend that you interview a local Realtor to learn more about the services they provide and the benefits for you. In a buyer's market, simply putting the home in the multiple listing service may not be enough. The Realtor can also advise you on pricing, additional marketing, negotiation, etc.
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Don Tepper, Agent, Burke, VA
Wed Feb 20, 2008
No. Absolutely not. You can sell your home on your own; you can use one of the For Sale By Owner Services; or you can pay a few hundred dollars just to have an agent put your home in the MLS.

However, the fact that you're asking the question--and it's good to ask questions--suggests that you at least might consider using a Realtor to sell your home...or at least interviewing some Realtors to see if you'd like to go that route.

But people do sell their homes on their own. There are plenty of books out there on the process. You might begin at

Good luck
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