As a trainer for a large national brand, I rely quite heavily on developing new training, marketing and follow up strategies based on the feedback I receive from my agents in the field. Lately, I have been hearing a single theme repeat with voracity: Many folks in today’s market feel like real estate agents are over rated. And, I’m here to tell you that they are dead wrong. I have seen sellers and buyers try to operate without hiring an agent, and watched them fall down many times over. Despite what you think, you still need to work with a professional, and I have four time tested and proven reasons why.
1. Finding the Home You Want, and Wanting the Home You Get
Sure, you could do it without an agent, but not always. Short sales, HUD foreclosure properties and most other homes today require that you have a licensed real estate agent submit your bid. The home buying (and even home selling) process is tricky, full of landmines that you might not expect without a seasoned professional buy your side. It’s been my experience that every agent I have ever had the pleasure of training is worth every dime of his or her commission.
2. Securing Your Mortgage
Buying a home isn’t like buying a car. You don’t find the house you want and secure the financing later. In fact, sellers will not work with buyers who are not pre-qualified or pre-approved. The first step for any home buyer is finding a lender who will qualify them up front for a mortgage. Most real estate agents have established relationships with great lenders, who can help home buyers quickly and for the best deals, as opposed to home buyers sifting through all that data on their own. I know, because I see it every day.
3. Getting the Best Deal
Let’s get down to brass tacks here, real estate agents have access to one of the most powerful tools available when it comes to finding and comparing properties, the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). Homebuyers and sellers, however, do not. Agents are trained to negotiate and be able to justify the asking price or offer price on any property better than the average bear – well, at least mine are.
4. Due Diligence and Inspections
Having a signed contract is always just the beginning. There is so much more to do in order to get to the closing table. Inspections need to be done, appraisals verified, home owner warranties discussed, homeowner associations contacted and mounds and mounds of overwhelming paperwork from title companies and more. Most buyers and sellers aren’t equipped to handle off of this unless they have a real estate agent (or real estate attorney) in their corner.
Still think you don’t need an agent?
More from this Contributor:
10 Must-Have Qualities of Top Producing Realtors
Signs that It’s Time to Break Up with Your Realtor
How I’m Creating Multiple Streams of Passive Income