If you are a home buyer or seller, you may ask yourself whether it is worth the expense of having a real estate professional involved in the transaction. You may think you are saving money by doing it yourself, but you could be biting off more than you can chew. Forfeiting professional help means depriving yourself of an array of services that can make a sale or purchase go considerably more smoothly.
In a recent survey by the National Association of Realtors, more than three-quarters of the people surveyed who had used a real estate broker to sell their home, felt the commission they paid was "money well spent." Two-thirds of the people who had sold their homes themselves either were unsure about or firmly decided against ever doing it again. On the other end of the transaction, nearly three-quarters of the buyers surveyed said real estate professionals can show buyers a better selection of homes than they could find on their own.
Sellers who use a real estate professional save themselves the time and inconvenience of showing their home to prospective buyers, many of whom are not really interested or do not have the funds to qualify for that home. Real estate brokers and agents will pre-qualify potential buyers before showing them a home. For buyers, the real estate professional can be instrumental in helping to find the neighborhood they want, as well as amenities in the surrounding area.
Realtors are paid on a straight commission basis. They don't receive a salary. They are not on an expense account. They are paid only after they sell something. This is why working with more than one agent is not a good idea. None of the Realtors know if it will be financially worthwhile to spend much of their time with you because they know that you may buy through another agent. So, you don't get the total dedication you need by playing the field. If a Realtor knows that you will be loyal to him or her, you will provide all the motivation that is necessary. Your Realtor can enthusiastically go to work knowing that all their effort will be rewarded. (Thomas Ervin, "Let's Talk About Real Estate")
When you think about buying or selling a home, you are wise to consult a real estate professional. Eight out of ten Americans do just that every year.