Should I Hire a Real Estate Agent to Sell My Home?

There’s a reason nearly 90 percent of sellers use a listing agent: selling a home takes time, knowledge of neighborhood trends, and negotiating skills. So, while eliminating the agent’s commission – 6 percent of the sale price, on average – sounds tempting, try to resist.

According to the National Association of Realtors, 82 percent of real estate sales are the result of agent contacts from previous clients, referrals, friends, family and personal contacts.

The Realtors priority is to help set the right price and then get buyers in the door. Agents have access to the most up-to-date information regarding recent sales of comparable homes and competing homes in your neighborhood. You may know that a home down the street was on the market for $350,000, but an agent will know if that home had upgrades and sold at $285,000 after 65 days on the market and after it fell out of escrow three times.

With a market that can shift weekly, if not daily, it is critical to keep abreast of those changes as they impact your home’s marketability and sale price. Realtors know the market conditions data, such as the average square foot cost of similar homes, median and average sales prices, average days on the market, and ratios of list-to-sold prices, among other criteria, will have a bearing on your home.

Contrary to popular belief, Realtors do much more than put an attractive “For Sale” sign in your front yard. Perhaps the most important exposure is through the MLS because it fans out to so many other sites and reaches most people directly and indirectly through its data feed.
Additionally, the agent will help stage and prepare your home for sale, providing professional quality photos and often videos of your home. Great Realtors promote your property through multiple social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. They will promote open houses, have Realtor walk throughs, and most importantly, vet potential buyers so you only deal with serious prospects.

Once you have found a buyer, the agent will make sure buyers are preapproved and negotiate on your behalf. Your agent will help you evaluate very buyer’s proposal without compromising your marketing position. The initial purchase agreement is only the beginning of a process of appraisals, inspectors, title, financing – a lot of possible pitfalls. Your agent will help you write a legally binding, win-win agreement that will be more likely to make it through to closing.

Before skipping a full service Realtor, think hard about the time and effort you want to spend, particularly if the process drags on. The average home takes about 4 months to sell (six in the slowest cities), according to NAR. If costs are a concern, have a frank conversation with your Realtor about what they expect to be paid.

Considering the relatively small cost of hiring a Realtor and the large potential risk of not haring one, it’s smart to find a professional to sell your home.

14 replies
  1. Sam Li
    Sam Li says:

    Selling a home should be done with the help of a professional. I like what you said about realtors and how they do much more than set a price. My friend wants to get his house sold, so I’ll make sure to find locate a real estate professional.

    Reply
  2. Carly Mckeen
    Carly Mckeen says:

    Thank you for all of 7your great information on why you should hire a real estate agent to help you sell your home. My husband got a new job in a different state, so we need to sell our home. I will definitely keep all of your many benefits and information on hiring a real estate agent when deciding if my husband and I should.

    Reply
  3. Taylor Hicken
    Taylor Hicken says:

    It makes sense when you mentioned hiring a realtor can save your time and effort to sell your property, especially when the process drags on as there is no potential buyer. My parents are planning to sell their current home since they want to build a retirement house in a peaceful area. I will suggest them to hire a realtor who is experienced to help save their time and effort from having to find a buyer.

    Reply
  4. Zachary Tomlinson
    Zachary Tomlinson says:

    It’s cool to think that you can now contact an expert who can market and negotiate your house for you, without the need for you to worry. One of my colleagues is thinking of selling his home so that he’d have additional funds for his wife’s pregnancy. I’ll recommend that he reach out to a realtor for assistance.

    Reply
  5. Thomas Clarence
    Thomas Clarence says:

    I thought it was interesting when you explained that a purchase agreement involves getting a title for the home. I would imagine that it would be important to get a title for your home if you are planning on selling it because it shows that you are the owner of the property. People want to purchase homes from trustworthy owners, so obtaining a title makes a lot of sense.

    Reply
  6. Kristofer Van Wagner
    Kristofer Van Wagner says:

    Hey Courtney, I appreciate that you shared that hiring a realtor can help us save time and energy when we need to sell our house. The other day my sister told me that she needs to sell her house as she is relocating to a different state. When I have dinner with her later this week, I will encourage her to hire a realtor as her busy schedule prohibits her from focusing on selling her house.

    Reply
  7. Taylor Hicken
    Taylor Hicken says:

    I appreciated it when you mentioned that an agent will pre-approve a buyer and negotiate on your behalf so you can save your time from having to do so. My sister and her family are planning to move to a new house next month and they are deciding to sell their current home so they can use the money to buy furniture for their new place. I will advise them to hire a reliable agent who can help with the process of selling their house as soon as possible.

    Reply
  8. Kristofer Van Wagner
    Kristofer Van Wagner says:

    It is awesome that this post explained that a realtor does so much more than setting prices. The other day my brother mentioned that he needed a realtor to help sell his house as he has not been receiving many enquiries due to the pandemic. I will recommend him to hire a professional and also look into the possibility of hosting a virtual open house.

    Reply
  9. Chris Pederson
    Chris Pederson says:

    I have never bought a house or tried to buy one before. It’s good to hear that realtors know the market data and its condition. That is something that I will never be able to understand so I’ll just hire a realtor to do handle it all.

    Reply
  10. Rachel Frampton
    Rachel Frampton says:

    My partner would like to sell her house, which is why she’s currnelty looking for a real estate agent that may help her out. Well, it’s good to know that they’ll be willing to stage the home and make it more attractive for buyers. I’m also glad to learn that they’ll promote her house through multiple social media platforms.

    Reply
  11. Max Jones
    Max Jones says:

    It was interesting to learn that 82% of real estate sales come from referrals and personal contacts. I am hoping to sell my home this year so I can find a home that is closer to where I work. I’ll start asking family and friends if they know any good real estate agents.

    Reply
  12. Kristofer Van Wagner
    Kristofer Van Wagner says:

    I like the idea that this post highlighted that one of the perks of hiring a realtor is that they can help sell our home faster. The other day my sister shared that she is looking to hire a realtor. I will remind her to choose someone trustworthy and qualified for the job.

    Reply
  13. Kate Hansen
    Kate Hansen says:

    It’s good to know that you can get help with staging your home with a real estate agent! My husband and I want to look into selling our home in a couple of months so that we can move into our new home soon, and we were wondering if hiring a real estate agent would be beneficial. I really appreciate you helping me learn more about the benefits of hiring a real estate agent.

    Reply

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