Do You Need a Realtor to Sell Your House?
People sell their houses for many reasons: maybe they want to change neighborhoods or they’re moving to another city or state, or they just need the money for something else.
If you’re thinking about selling your home for any reason, you must be worrying about all the procedures and steps involved and looking to work with an estate agent. But you don’t necessarily need to sell with a realtor. Keep reading and determine which is the right selling procedure for you.
What to Consider When Selling Your House
Depending on your financial situation, you might consider three options; to sell by yourself, to hire a real estate agent, or to sell your property to a home buying company.
Normally, people don’t consider homebuyers, but they’re a strong option, especially if you’re going through financial hardship. They buy the house as it is, they pay you in cash and don’t require commissions. So, they should be your first option if you need cash quickly.
On the other hand, you could hire a realtor or sell by yourself. Let’s consider the pros and cons of both of them.
The Agent’s Commission
Realtors are professionals committed to your interests and to selling your house as soon as they can. So, if you decide to hire an estate agent, you must be aware that their services cost around 6% of your home price. Don’t let this cost catch you by surprise — do the numbers and decide if it’s right for you.
Furthermore, a Northwestern study found that home sellers who joined an FSBO (for sale by owner) website sold their house at a similar price to those who used a real estate company. Of course, it took a little bit more time, but considering the 6% commission, if you can wait it may be a good option.
Is Commission Negotiable?
It’s not impossible to negotiate the realtor’s commission to lower your selling costs. However, if you offer a low percentage, the real estate agent won’t accept it or won’t have a real interest in selling your house fast and efficiently.
Your Time and Availability
Once your home is on the market, you must be available for home visits at any time. If you hired a realtor, let the professionals do their job, since they’re the ones that can answer tricky questions and show your home’s best assets.
Remember, potential buyers work and have their own schedule, so most likely they’d like to visit during weeknights and weekends. If you have a lot of free time, selling by yourself might be a good choice, but if you have a lot of responsibilities, start considering other options.
The House’s Price
When deciding your home’s price, include the following costs:
- Agent’s Commission
As we mentioned before, it’s around 6% of your home’s price.
- Closing Costs
This includes attorney fees, sale taxes, title company fees, etc. It’s about 1% to 3% of your house’s price.
- Home Inspection Repair
Before listing your home, a home inspection is advised to be aware of any major damage that needs to be repaired. Depending on your home’s state this can cost thousands of dollars and if you don’t do the repairs, the client will be expecting a discount.
- Moving Expenses
Don’t forget: You’re moving, too, and you need to take this into consideration. Moving expenses can range from $500 to $1,500.
Additionally, we advise you to do a comparative market analysis (CMA) to price your house right. If you hire a realtor, he/she has the responsibility to do it, and if you’re selling by yourself you have to investigate and analyze recently sold properties near your area and make a comparison between them and your house.
Agents Can Play Both Sides
When hiring a real estate agent, you must investigate and interview several to make sure you’re making the right decision. And yes, the best realtors charge more, but it may be worth it, especially if you want to prevent fraudulent behavior.
Agents can play for both sides, and they can assure that you got a great deal because that’s what you want to hear. However, you could have gotten a better price by waiting for another potential buyer or even by selling yourself. In the worst-case scenario, your agent can arrange another agreement with the buyers to earn more money.
Some US States allow “dual agency” which means that the same person can represent the buyer and seller. In this instance, the realtor earns all the commission, and some buyers see it as a way to save money.
Make a Smart Choice
In summary, you don’t need a realtor to sell your house but as with everything in life, there are pros and cons that you need to consider. Depending on your personal situation, and especially if you’re going through financial hardship, hiring a realtor would be an unnecessary cost. However, if you sell by yourself probably it’ll take more time than expected.
Contact KC Property Connection: we buy houses in Kansas City and we make the process as simple as possible for you — no commissions and no fees.