Think you have your real estate agent pegged? Think again! Have you bought into any of these common misconceptions?
MYTH 1: Real estate agents don’t work hard for their money.
Like lawyers, realtors get a bad rap because people assume that they make a boatload of money for minimal work. This is not true!
If your realtor is a full-time agent and closes deals year-round, they are working for every penny of that commission! (By-the-by, real estate agents don’t collect all of the commission expense; their brokerage takes a cut.) Even the most serious agents put in hours upon hours of cold calling, door knocking, preparing for open houses, driving clients to showings, coming up with marketing strategies, and competing for listings. All agents face a ton of rejection and stress on a daily basis. At times they will have to pay out of pocket for the sake of closing a deal. They may have to go months of rent or mortgage payments without a deal or income. The majority of agents quit within their first year for a reason: it’s a tough job. So if you’re working with an experienced, full-time agent with a track record of success, you can bet they get some internal satisfaction from it.
MYTH 2: Real estate agents will say anything to get you to buy.
Agents are held to a strict code of ethics. Though they are trying to sell you a home, they cannot lie. They have to be honest with you.
What’s more, agents build their business from referrals, good reviews, word-of-mouth marketing, and repeat clients. This isn’t just part of their business: this is their business. So, it’s not in their best interest to lie to you. Even so, if you feel like something fishy is going on, you must move on to a realtor you can trust.
MYTH 3: Real estate agents don’t care about you.
Though we can’t speak for all agents out there, there are some great agents who just want to put you in a home that is right for you. They know that their clients are human beings who are about to embark on the most stressful transactions out there. They reject cutting corners and strive for honest customer service. They don’t see your relationship as a means to an end but an end in itself. If you are unhappy, they are unhappy too. And they have the accountability to fix it.
MYTH 4: All agents are the same.
In fact, all agents are different, and that’s precisely why you need to put in as much research as possible to choose the right agent for you. After all, buying a house is the most important type of transaction you will make in your lifetime. You don’t want just anyone’s help, even if they look great on paper.
One agent’s marketing approach might be hosting open houses; another’s might focus on social media and 3D virtual home tours. One agent specializes in condos; the other could specialize in new construction. And let’s not downplay the importance of personality here. One agent might just vibe better with you. Communication is easy, you feel like your needs are met, and you feel valued. All of these factors should be considered when choosing your agent!
MYTH 5: You don’t need an agent.
If you want to go For Sale By Owner, you likely shouldn’t. FSBO is extremely hard. Why?
There’s a reason why real estate agents exist. They have years of experience and a depth of industry knowledge you likely don’t have. Your agent knows more about the market and your area. So they’ll be the voice of reason when you overprice your home. When your house goes three months on the market without an offer, they’ll know why. Unless you are an experienced agent yourself, you simply need to hire an agent. Otherwise, you can bet the odds will not be in your favor.
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