Blog by Jennifer Allan

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Should You Hire a "Listing Specialist" to Sell Your Denver Home?

Many real estate agents market themselves as “listing specialists” - that is - they focus mainly on marketing houses for sale instead of working with buyers. Many “listing specialists” hire buyer agents to work for them, to handle the calls they receive from their many For Sale signs.

On the surface, this sounds logical; after all, don’t we all want a “specialist” to represent us when we’re looking for expert assistance?

Sure we do! But when I think of a “specialist” in real estate, I imagine that person to understand the entire process of marketing, selling and closing a home sale. And, to my way of thinking, someone who specializes in the exchange of real estate should have an intimate understanding of the Very Important Person on the other side of the table - the BUYER.

In my never-to-be-humble-opinion, if a real estate agent doesn’t work with buyers on a regular basis, he may not have the expertise to accurately price homes for market. I know a few agents who have dozens of For Sale signs in my market area, yet have never shown or previewed one of my listings. I don’t understand how they can be a neighborhood expert when they don’t know the competition, and more importantly, don’t have an understanding of how buyers think.

Because I work with both buyers and sellers equally, I can help a seller look at his home through the eyes of a buyer… and the buyer’s agent. I know what is currently in vogue with the local buyers. I know what will WOW a buyer as he walks in the door…and what will immediately turn him off.

I can advise my seller client on the upgrades and improvements that truly matter in our market, even specific to his particular neighborhood. I know how important a walk-in closet is… or isn’t. I know if buyers will overlook a dated kitchen… or if they won’t. I know if buyers will balk at the lack of a garage… or if they will be tickled just to have off-street parking.

I know how much value to add for being close to a popular coffee shop… or how much to subtract for being on a bus route. I know how to price an asbestos-sided house so that buyers will consider it… over the vintage brick Tudor they really want.

Other things I know because I work with buyers…

I understand why a 1,200 sqft Bungalow is far more valuable than a 1,000 sqft Bungalow (aside from the difference in square footage.)

I understand why a main floor master bedroom is undesirable for many buyers.

I know that in certain neighborhoods, one-story Bungalows are selling far more quickly than larger two-story Victorians. And I know why.

The real estate market changes on a daily basis and data from the MLS tells only part of the story. What you knew about the market six months ago is irrelevant to the market conditions today. To truly be a “listing specialist,” you must also be committed to knowing the inventory… and to knowing the buyer.

And Knowing the Buyer makes me a Listing Specialist. IMHO.