I recently listed a personl home for sale with a Realtor. Third time is a charm I hope, in the last two years. (Let me preface this post by saying the home is in Florida, where nothing has been moving)
There is an old cliche that "you get what you pay for". This cliche has actually been used a lot in the real estate world, usually comparing full-service to discount brokers. Well, I have learned through listing this home, that this saying does not always apply when it comes to Realtors. What makes me qualified to say this is that I am trying to sell the same house, in the same climate of real estate, with three different people.
Our first Realtor was a discount agent charging 1.5% to sell, the second charged 3% to sell, and the third is charging 2.5%.
What is interesting in this case is that commissions have nothing to do with the level of service each of these Realtors provided.
Even though the first agent was operating under a discounted commission structure, I was satisfied with the level of service we received. He always returned my calls, he put together an interesting marketing plan and stuck to it, and always kept us in the loop regarding showings. Ultimately the listing expired and we didn't renew with him because I wanted to go with someone who took the marketing in a different direction.
The second agent was the most expensive, and was the worst. I'll save his service level for another post on how not to treat clients. This relationship last three weeks too long.
And I think I have struck gold with my current agent. The marketing plan he put together so far has been terrific. The pictures look fantastic, the 360 view pictures give a great feel for the home, and the text is marvelously written. The number of websites that the home is appearing on is impressive, and all the tracking and feedback mechanisms that are in place are wonderful (especially since I am an out of town owner and am totally reliant on my agent for information).
Moral of this story is that time invested in really researching agents is well spent. I will no longer consider what commission the agent is charging and instead concentrate on what the agent is saying and their level of professionalism. The commission will work itself out in the end.
Side 1- If interested, I have been blogging about the process of selling my home here.