A listing agent does what the name implies—she lists a property for sale. She works for the seller, and is sometimes also referred to as the seller's agent. It's her job to properly market the property and to get it sold.
Do You Really Need an Agent?
Of course, you're free to sell your home on your own. But unless you have a real knack for marketing and a bit of experience, you'll probably find that you'll do better with an agent.
How a Listing Agent Is Compensated
The most common form of seller representation is when the listing agent has signed an exclusive-right-to-sell listing with the seller. This means only the listing agent is entitled to a commission, or more accurately, the listing agent's brokerage is entitled to a commission. The brokerage then typically shares the commission with the agent.
Exclusive listings are bilateral agreements between a broker and a seller. Listings agents like to believe that the listing belongs to the agent, but the listing is actually not his property if he isn't the broker of the company. Listings belong to the broker or brokerage.
There is no set commission to be charge on listing a home for sale. We work with the seller to determine the best marketing strategy and listing commission.
When the Listing Agent Is Also the Selling Agent
A listing agent can also be a selling agent, which means that the listing agent is engaged in dual representation, which is a form of dual agency.
My Marketing Guide:
The following are my proactive steps to get a house sold:
1. Review your house with you. I look at all areas of the house and property then make suggestions to stage it properly to sell.
2. Take plenty of pictures. Houses with pictures are twice as likely to sell. I use a professional photographer to take photos at no charge to the Seller.
3. Price your house competitively to sell.
4. Submit your house to our local Multiple Listing Service.
5. Develop a list of features of your home for Brokers to use with potential buyers.
6. Email a features sheet to top agents in the marketplace for their potential buyers.
7. Suggest and advise to any changes you may want to make to your property to make it more saleable.
8. Constantly update you as to any changes in the marketplace.
9. Contact over the next seven days my buyer leads, center of influence and past clients for their referrals and prospective buyers.
10. Add additional exposure through a professional sign and lock-box.
11. Pre-qualify prospective buyers, when possible.
12. Keep you aware of the various methods of financing that a buyer might want to use.
13. Follow-up on the salespeople who have shown your house for their feedback and response.
14. Represent you on all offer presentations to assist you in negotiating the best possible price and terms.
15. Handle all the follow-up upon a contract being accepted; all mortgage, title and other closing procedures.
16. Walk you through every step of the way. Always a call away.
Pricing Your House
Get complete insights on your key competitors for free. Before putting a home on the market, you can obtain a free Comparative Market Analysis.
The CMA standard analysis reports tend to contain the following information:
1. Active listings. These are comparable houses in your area that are currently for sale. They are in direct competition with you for buyers. The prices on these houses are not indicative of “market value” since it won’t reflect the true market value until the house sells.
2. Pending listings. These are formerly active listings that are currently under contract. They have not yet closed, so they are not yet a comparable sale. However, pending sales do indicate a good sample of the “market value”. If your home is priced above the list price of a pending house, it could be on the market longer than average.
3. Sold listings. Houses that have sold within the past three months are considered comparable sales. These are the sales an appraiser will use for the appraisal value of your house for the buyer. The sales of these houses represent the “market value”.
Comparable sales are those that most closely resemble your house. Appraisers compare houses based on square footage. The CMA should also include houses that are:
1. Of similar age of construction
2. Similar amenities, upgrades, and condition
To advise you on the best price to list your house I will always run a free Comparative Market Analysis. Setting the right price from the start is among the most important steps toward successfully selling your house. This requires taking a close look at what other houses are selling for to judge the relative value of your house. No matter how priceless your remodeled kitchen or finished basement are, the market sets a value—the price a buyer is willing to pay. One of the key ways to compare your house to others on the market is to look at a comparative market analysis.
Getting Your House Ready for the Market
The top three things you can do to get your house ready to sell is declutter, clean, and paint.
There are many things you can do before calling a real estate agent that will help your house to show well and sell quickly.
1. Declutter the entire house. Buyers like to imagine their things in the home they want to buy. If your house is cluttered from top to bottom they won’t be able to imagine anything there but your stuff. Take a weekend and comb through the house from top to bottom and get rid of anything you don’t need. Many people also choose to rent a small storage site to store items they want to keep but need it out of the home for staging. Decluttering also helps when trying to keep your house clean for showings and helps when it’s time to move.
2. Bring in a cleaning crew. You can make it a one-time splurge and consider it worth it. The cleaning company will do a thorough deep clean before going on the market. It will be easier for you to keep clean while showing and well worth it in the long run.
3. Touch up the paint. Examine all the rooms. Look for scuff marks, holes, deep nicks and scratches. Most buyers have radar vision. If you can see it; so can they. Some houses may need complete paint jobs and others just a bit of touch up here and there.
Decorating and staging your house to sell is always a good thing. You’ll want to weed and landscape as much as possible. Fix any broken items and add finishing touches. Try to make each space look as large as possible.
One of the first things buyers will look at will be the consistency in feel and color scheme throughout the house. Simple is better. When getting a house ready to show, try to make the space look as uncluttered as possible while still feeling polished and complete.
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