Selling a home is hard work

Are you just as excited as I am about this nice weather we’ve been having?! I have a daughter who just recently turned a year old. I am so excited for this nice weather and summer coming soon, to watch her play outside. Tis’ the season for more buyers to be out and for more sellers to start listing their homes.

As I reflect on my career so far in real estate, I do think I have done a pretty good job. Obviously, everyone always wants to be the best at everything the same goes for me. Every year I try to think of new and innovative things I could do to stay ahead of the competition. I do think that is something I am good at and have going for me. I am one of the younger realtors in the business, but I am aware that times have changed. The way advertising used to be, is not the way advertising is now. Everything seems to be online now, and you must be creative to really, stand out! Before I got into real estate I went to college for business and marketing. That really is what intrigues me. As I was in college, I bought my first home with my now husband and I had a ton of fun. I thought it looked like something anyone could do. So, I switched my gears towards real estate and started the schooling for that. I remember saying to someone that I was going into real estate and them saying well, it’s expensive and it’s hard! My thought was, “okay, you just don’t want me to do it”, which was probably part true; although, what she said was right on point! I had no idea how hard it was going to be. My original thought that anyone could do it was soon to be proved wrong.

As a realtor we must take so many hours of continuing education in order to keep our license active. The advertising we do, fees we must pay, stuff we must buy for the business, etc. adds up very quickly and before you know it, you’re almost in debt. I seriously pondered getting out of the business a few times because of the struggles you face, but I am a fighter and am definitely not a quitter. As my dad always says when he meets people looking to sell their home, “my daughter is a realtor and she is “young and hungry””. Literally and theoretically I suppose, ha ha! I have faced very close friends going through other realtors, showing people homes for months or even years for them to never buy, helping sellers get their homes ready to sell, giving them a price and comparable homes, etc. for them to list it themselves. But, that’s the name of the game. You should never underestimate what people are willing to do for a little extra money.

In saying that, I think it’s also a good lesson for buyers or sellers to understand the risk they take when buying a for sale by owner or for someone listing their home on their own. It is a requirement that we carry E&O insurance to protect us in special cases. As a seller listing a home on your own, you have nothing to back you in a bad situation. I always wonder, besides someone wanting to save a little bit of money what their reasons are behind wanting to sell on their own.

As a buyer, realtors drive them in their cars using our gas to showings, set up all the homes and show them to the buyers. We help buyers through negotiations, write up offers that are legal and binding. Help guide buyers through the pre-approval process. Set up inspections with licensed inspectors. Send all appropriate paperwork to the lenders during the process. Help to answer any questions a buyer may have, take them into the home before closing in order to protect them and be sure the home is in the same state it was found during the showing. Line up the closing and go to the closing with the buyer. Give the buyer a present as a “thank you” and give them the keys to their new home. I’ll even throw in a picture in front of the sold sign if they want me to! All of this is FREE to the buyer. Having the protection and guidance from a realtor who will work for them for FREE to them is very important to most buyers. It would be silly of them to turn that down.

As a seller trying to sell their home on their own, you’re missing out on all those potential buyers. Statistically, it’s been proven that you will get less money trying to sell your home on your own then you would if you had listed with a realtor. Buyers are savy nowadays and understand that you’re trying to save on a commission by selling it on your own. They will take that 6-7% right off the top and not budge because they know that’s what you would have paid if you would have listed it with a realtor. I have seen it happen plenty of times. If you don’t pay a realtor, you’re going to end up paying an attorney to do the work, you’re not going to get out of paying someone to do it!

When showing your home, how do you weed out the lookers from the buyers? Do you know if they are pre-approved, how to guide them through the approval process, and if they are approved for your price home? Did you just go through all that work showing your home and the person can’t even afford it? Typically, a buyer won’t tell you what they don’t like about your home when going through. I always tell my sellers, I would much rather get good feedback obviously, but if they didn’t like the home, why didn’t they? Sometimes the negative feedback buyers give is something a seller can work with and fix so we don’t keep getting that same feedback! It’s hard to obtain accurate feedback when selling it on your own. Also, how are you certain when selling it on your own that you’re priced accordingly? I’ve even seen people try to sell their home for less than what I know I could have sold it for, you may be losing money.

As the weather gets nicer more people will start to list their home. I urge you to meet with a realtor… it’s be fabulous if that realtor was me by the way! I had to throw that in there. I can sit down with you and go over your finances and estimate what you would potentially make on the home after all the fees too. Haven’t you heard the saying, don’t knock it till you try it?! Maybe you had a bad experience before but who’s to say that would happen again? You maybe just had the wrong person working for you. The National Association of Realtors was founded in 1908. If I go off that, that means realtors have been around for 111 years! There is a reason for that, we must bring some value, right? If you’re thinking of selling don’t hesitate to call to see what I can do for you today!

Enjoy the rest of your week,

Cassidy Harris

Making Realty a Reality!