Do you really need a Realtor to sell your home

Do you really need a Realtor to sell your home?
By David Reibstein,
President, Homarc

Licensed real estate professionals bring state-mandated training and knowledge to the table for buyers and sellers. In fact, agents have to get as much, or more, training than is required for some two-year college degrees before being given permission by the state to represent buyers and sellers in the transaction.

By the time a home sale is completed, it is chock-full of legally-binding documents defining the exchange of hundreds of thousands of dollars between two parties – parties that typically engage in such a transaction only two or three times in their lifetimes. Both buyer and seller must abide by the terms of the contract, and many times they don’t even know what they contract requires them to do.

According to the National Association of Realtors, nearly half of all homebuyers are purchasing for the first time – and many of them think that real estate agents’ sole purpose is to “show” the house. Of course, real estate agents bring much greater value to the transaction.

We’ve all heard the term, “You get what you pay for,” and that is certainly true when it comes to the sale of a home. Many home sellers would love to sell their homes without any help from a “middle man,” thus saving the commission dollars. They say to themselves, “Hey, why pay thousands of dollars of my money to sell a house when I can do it myself?”

But every agent has a real estate license regulated by the state. This means they are knowledgeable about various aspects of real estate law, rules and regulations such as:

  1. What rights exist for land and how they can be exchanged
  2. How title can be held and how to ensure clear title to the land
  3. Financing: traditional, non-traditional, owner-held, etc.
  4. Fair housing laws: federal, state and local
  5. Local limits on the sale and trade of real estate
  6. State disclosure laws and regulations on the trade of real estate
  7. Contracts and forms

Most sellers I’ve talked with, while having access to plenty of information and advice on the Internet about the sales transaction, do not know the nuances, pitfalls and potential legal problems they can face in the midst of disposing of their extremely large home investment. Licensed real estate professionals will help you complete the sale without any surprises that can cost you time, money and worry. What’s that worth to you?