- Disconnect Your Emotions
- Make Your House “Anonymous”
- Remove Clutter Inside & Outside
- Fix up Interior & Exterior (Low Costs Options)
- Know the shape of your plumbing, roof, doors windows etc.
- Affordable Interior Design Options (Less Is More)
This process can be difficult because there are agents on every corner and agents that pop out of retirement when you come along.
Remember you want an agent that will produce extraordinary results for you with a creative and fresh approach. The same ol same agents will end up costing you time and money.
There are several different types of listing contracts, but very few of them are used. The “Exclusive Right to Sell” is the most common, but there is the “open listing,” the “exclusive agency listing,” and the “one-time show.”
The “open listing” is mostly used by people trying to sell their home by owner who are also willing to work with real estate agents. Basically, it gives a real estate agent the right to bring buyers around to view your home. If their client buys your home, the agent earns a commission. There is nothing exclusive about an open listing and a home seller can give out such listings to every agent who comes around.
For that reason, no agent who accepts an open listing is going to market your home or put it in the Multiple Listing Service. If your home fits the criteria for one of their clients, and it is convenient, they may be willing to show it to their client. That is all an “open listing” is good for.
A “one-time show” is similar to an open listing in many respects, as it is most often used by real estate agents who are showing a FSBO (for sale by owner) to one of their clients. The home seller signs the agreement, which identifies the potential buyer and guarantees the agent a commission should that buyer purchase the home. This prevents the buyer and seller from negotiating directly later and trying to avoid paying the agent’s commission.
As with an open listing, agents will not be spend money on marketing your home and it will not be placed in the Multiple Listing System.
Exclusive Agency Listing
An “exclusive agency” listing allows an agent to list and market your home, guaranteeing them a commission if the house sells through any real estate agent or company. It also allows sellers to seek out buyers on their own.
This is not a popular type of listing agreement.
The reason an “exclusive agency” listing is unpopular is because there is no incentive for your agent and their company to spend money and time marketing your home. If you come up with your own buyer, they have spent money (and time) that cannot be earned back through the real estate commission.
Plus, it is too easy for greed and a lack of ethics to enter the picture. Some unethical buyers or sellers will try to cut out the agent, even though it was an agent’s efforts that brought the buyer to the home.
If you find an agent willing to accept such a listing, do not expect too much from them. They will probably just place it in the Multiple Listing Service and sit around to see if something happens.
Exclusive Right to Sell
Giving a real estate agent the “exclusive right to sell” your property does not mean that there will not be other agents involved. Your agent is the listing agent and the most important part of his or her job is to market your home to other agents who work with buyers. Those agents will show your home to their clients. Regardless of who sells the home, even if you sell it yourself to a friend at work, your listing agent will earn a commission.
If you want full service from an an agent and his or her company, this is probably the only type of listing they will accept. Full service means an agent will advertise your home, place it in the Multiple Listing Service, market the home to other agents, and perhaps even hold open houses. This requires an expenditure of both time and money.
Only with an “exclusive right to sell” does an agent have a realistic expectation of earning anything on their investment in selling your home. That is why it is the most common type of listing. Of course, the agent and their company still have to perform in order to get paid — your home has to sell.
In most areas there is a customary percentage that real estate agents expect to earn as a commission. When completing the listing agreement, you and your agent will negotiate and agree on the amount of the real estate commission.
When you agree to a commission with a listing agent, you should keep in mind that there are usually two agents involved in most transactions. Most of the time, only part of the commission goes to the listing agent’s company. The other portion goes to the company representing the buyer.
Will your property be listed in the Multiple Listing Service? Being listed in the MLS expands your sales force. Every agent is invited to bring potential buyers to your property. This larger supply of buyers effects your pricing power and the ability to sell your home more quickly.
What is the effect on the company representing the buyer? Since part of the commission usually goes to the company representing the buyer, you may want to ask whether that portion of the commission offers the customary amount. As mentioned above, the more agents that show your property, the more pricing power you have and the more quickly your home will sell.
What is the effect on marketing? Very few properties are sold through advertising or open houses, but it does happen. Most often, those ads generate calls from potential buyers or sellers, who end up as clients for real estate agents — and you want agents to bring potential buyers to your property. Advertising your property to other agents has a higher impact than direct advertising to consumers.
Will you be tied in to other services? A real estate company with bundled services has more income opportunity which may allow them to offer lower prices. However, there are a few companies whose additional services are not priced competitively with opportunities you can find on the open market. You should be sure to ask lots of questions and determine whether you are limited to certain choices or you have the freedom to also explore the open market.
How and when listing commissions are earned?
Your listing contract specifies a listing price. Your agent’s job is to bring a “ready, willing and able” buyer to present an offer. If you reach agreement with the buyer, then the agent has done his job and earned the commission. Once the sale has closed, the real estate broker gets paid from the proceeds of the sale.
If the buyer proves unable or unwilling to conclude the sale, the house is placed back on the market and the agent has to begin earning his or her commission all over again.
However, if the seller backs out or does not accept an offer that meets the price and terms of the listing agreement, the listing broker has still earned the commission. They may want to be paid, even though you did not actually sell your home. Therefore, it is very important to carefully consider every detail when completing your listing contract and accepting an offer to buy your property.
Although real estate agents can (and do) work with both buyers and sellers, most tend to concentrate more on one than the other. They specialize. When you bought your home, you probably worked with a “selling agent” – an agent that works mostly with buyers. Because of the nature of real estate advertising and marketing, the public’s main image of the real estate profession is that of the selling agent (buyer’s agent).
As a result, many homeowners expect their listing agent to do the same things that a selling agent does – find someone to buy their home. After all, they do the things you would expect if they were searching for buyers. A sign goes up in the front yard. Ads are placed in the local newspaper and real estate magazines. Your agent holds an open house on the weekend. Your house is proudly displayed on the internet.
But this is only “surface” marketing. More important activity occurs behind the scenes. After the “for sale” sign goes up and flyers are printed, your agent’s main job is to market your home to other agents, not to home-buyers.
Your agent should prepare dynamic flyers show casing the heart of the house and provide specific enticing details about your property. There should also be visible signs that provoke calls. Messaging is key!