Real estate is big business. Real estate agents make a living, and quite often a good one, by helping people buy and sell homes. But some people choose to cut out the middleman and sell their own homes. There are arguments for and against both methods of home selling.
Many people choose to go through a realtor because it means less hassle for them. Having a realtor handle all of the legwork saves the seller a substantial amount of time. Instead of spending your time putting up signs, writing and purchasing ads, and fielding calls from those who may or may not truly be interested, you can concentrate on simply keeping your home showable. The realtor can do the rest.
Realtors possess market knowledge that the general public does not, and in many cases has little or no access to. This means that they can more accurately determine a workable asking price for your home. They are also experienced at handling negotiations and may be able to help you get a higher selling price than you would selling on your own.
The downside to going through a realtor is having to pay commissions. These are usually a percentage of the home's selling price. Whether directly or indirectly, the buyer pays the commission. So by cutting out the middleman, the seller can lower the price and still receive the same amount for his home.
Selling your own home requires more work on your part than going through a realtor. You have the job of marketing your home, taking calls about it, showing it, and closing the deal. You will probably need a lawyer to do the paperwork and ensure that everything goes smoothly.
There are now more ways to get exposure for your home when selling it yourself than ever before. There are numerous websites on which you can list your property. You can run classified ads online and off. Flyers can be placed in stores and other places where potential buyers will see them. Including pictures in your ads will make them more interesting.
The key advantage to selling your own home is not having to pay fees to a realtor. You get to keep the full amount of the selling price. You could use this to your advantage by lowering the asking price to reflect the lack of fees, or you could ask the same amount that you would with a realtor and make a larger profit.
Although, it is becoming somewhat easier to sell your own home, listing your home through a realtor can save you lots of time and effort. Whether you should go through a realtor depends on whether you have the time, patience, and confidence to do everything yourself.