What Does a Real Estate Agent DO For All That Money?
I'm going to answer one of your burning questions about working with a professional real estate agent. I know you've wondered about it, everyone does, especially those who are getting ready to sell a home for the first time. You may have even wanted to ask me, but were afraid I might get offended (don't worry, I won't).
Many people think that the main reason you hire a real estate agent is for MLS exposure. And, unfortunately, in some cases that may appear to be the primary service some real estate agents provide. However, a GOOD agent provides much more than simply a For Sale sign and a listing on an online database.
A good real estate agent has great connections in the real estate world. She has a readily available list of home improvement contractors (heating, roofing, structural, electrical, painting, plumbing etc.), one or two good handymen, a cleaning service, legal referrals and lawn service providers. You should never have to go to the phone book to find help during the marketing process.
A good real estate agent has systems in place to sell homes far more efficiently than a homeowner ever could. Selling or buying a home within the established real estate system is incredibly efficient compared to selling or buying a home outside of the system. Real estate agents have (or should have) a 7 day/week showing service, MLS access, a contracts library, lock boxes, signs and Internet sites.
Obviously, one important reason you hire a real estate agent is because you expect him or her to know more about selling homes than you do. Selling real estate professionally requires a license and continuing education, but in reality, 99% of a real estate agent's expertise comes from on-the-job experience. And, the more experienced the real estate agent, the more expertise he has. Every real estate transaction is a little different, with its own little quirks, glitches and special circumstances. The best way to get in trouble is when you don't know what you don't know!
Your real estate agent will spend a lot of time managing the sale of your home. There is far more going on behind the scenes than holding open houses and attending closings, although due to the above factors (connections, systems and expertise), a good real estate agent will be pretty efficient at their job. The time your agents spends handling the sale of your home will save YOU lots of time... and money!
Jennifer Allan, GRI 303-947-1335