Are You Getting What You Paid For?

As I drive around certain neighborhoods, I’m starting to see signs pop up on listings where a reduced commission is offered. Further, I have talked to other agents in our office that have gone to listing appointments and did not get the listing because the seller decided to go with an agent who offered a vastly reduced commission. But, are these reduced commission really in your best interest? Are they truly improving your bottom line?

For a seller to receive top dollar for their home in any type of market, representation is key – and are you getting that necessary representation and exposure? This all narrowing it down to you technically “getting what you pay for”.

As many of you may know, advertising is expensive and these expenses are only increasing over time. And advertising is not the only expense out there Рyou are looking at expenses for flyers, strong internet presence, paper advertising, open house expenses (food, beverages, signage, flyers, neighborhood mailers, advertising, gas for the vehicle (primarily when it comes down to showings and presentation of any offers that come in), signage, lock-boxes, photography, and at times video Рand now the ever increasing need in making any advertising mobile friendly. Everything necessary to optimize your listings performance in getting it out there in front of the consumer. Further, if another agent brings in a buyer, this commission is then split with the cooperating agent Рwill cooperating agents be willing to show to their clients a listing that offers a non-typical, low commission over a commission they are used to getting? Or, if the normal commission is being offered to cooperating agents, how much less does that mean your agent is receiving and thus being able to place into the presence of your property?

So, how much of this is being sacrificed or are you willing to sacrifice?

I am not saying that all “bargain” commission offices or agents have reduced services. Some may be able to offer everything mentioned and still offer a lower commission as well. This is when it becomes important to compare services offered by each office/agent and establish what would be the best for you and your needs.

Ask such questions as:

  1. What type of marketing plans do you offer? Internet, paper, neighborhood outreach….
  2. Are you willing to do open houses?
  3. Is listing information and advertising mobile friendly?
  4. How quickly are you able to respond to inquiries? Will it be you handling the inquiries are someone else?
  5. Are you going to be available to show the home, or will someone else?

Overall, just interview and compare because I want you to have maximum exposure regardless of who you use Рwhich not only increases your chances of receiving market value for your property, but vastly increases your chances of a quick sale.

Home Buying: Online Shopping

What’s great about the internet, is that you can do a lot of your shopping online. Did you know that almost 3 out of 4 home buyers actually do their home shopping online!?! What is great about these online searches is that a consumer is able to narrow their search by shopping for specifics, for example the number of bedrooms, number of baths, square footage, garage/parking, lot size, and so much more. They can even narrow down by price range. Homes can be located by ZIP code, price, special features, video tours, pictures. The neighborhoods can be explored via aerial maps, crime statistics, school ratings, and so on.

Shopping online is not as easy as it may sound. (1) There is no single online location with all the listings available in a certain area. (2) You are not always seeing the “freshest” data, it some times takes time for these listings to update to the most current/recent information.

The most and the most recent listings can be made available via a real estate professional. Even if you find a listing through your internet search, confirm with your agent that all of the information for that property is current and correct. With the agents ability to access the local Multiple Listing Service, they will be able to research the necessary information quickly.

The internet is a great place when conducting home research. You can gain information about neighborhoods, home features, and other pertinent factors. It can help in eliminating or adding certain homes and with that research in hand, you’ll be better equipped to make a decision when it comes time to purchase.

The Web

Over 90 percent of home buyers used an agent while searching for their home, but most buyers also utilize a number of other resources, including the internet, to find a home. Because of the robust, interactive nature of the Internet, many homes buyers engage their agents to help them find a home and use the Internet to select homes to visit in person, or they use the Internet to eliminate unsuitable homes.

Almost all web sites such as REALTOR.COM that having listings to view also have links to neighborhood information, often including satellite photos. Using ZIP codes, many online sites have state-of-the-art satellite technology combined with detailed information about homes, neighborhoods, and nearby conveniences and services. You can get an aerial map of the entire ZIP code, with an overview of the homes for sale and where they are, as well as neighborhood parks and other amenities.