Why Use a REALTOR®
A home is the most expensive purchase most Americans make during their lifetime. It's also the most significant sale. Real estate transactions have serious emotional and financial consequences for consumers. Facilitating a successful real estate transaction requires more than an online search and the printing of some legal documents, it requires expertise.
Price it right. There are lots of sites where you can view price estimates for your home before you list it for sale. Using those price estimates is risky business - online estimates can be off by as much as 35 percent. The tax records and data, such online tools rely on can be 6 - 12 months old. In real estate, a lot can change in a month or less. Realtors® know the local market, have access to the most current sale data, and he or she has the tools to price your house in line with the market to maximize your earnings. In 2012, using a real estate agent garnered sellers an additional $40,100.
A REALTOR® is an expert. Real estate laws change from year to year and differ from state to state. On average, people purchase homes once every 7 - 10 years. Rules can, and often do, change between transactions. REALTORS® must stay current with all of the updates in regulations, laws, contracts, and practices in their geographical area. Once you hire your REALTOR®, her or his knowledge is put to work for you.
When you hire a REALTOR®, you have hired an expert who is contractually bound to protect you and your best financial interests. In order to be a member of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), a REALTOR® must subscribe to the NAR's strict Code of Ethics.
Finding the right home is about more than square footage, baths, and closet space. Online browsing is a great way to start a home search. When it's time to buy, knowing all of the pros and cons of a property can help you make the right decision. Realtors® live and breathe real estate, and they can share information about a home that you wouldn't otherwise know. Your REALTOR®'s diligence goes beyond the esthetics and finds the details about homes you're considering. A REALTOR® brings an objective voice to a subjective situation.
The fun part is finding the right home for you. The real work is in contracts and negotiations. Going through 50 pages of legalese plus addendums and riders, understanding all of the rules, regulations, and stipulations is one of the most important, least fun parts of the home purchasing process. REALTORS® can help you craft an attractive offer that makes sense for you. Your REALTOR® is your advocate.
** Reprinted with permission of the National Association of REALTORS