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Using a REALTOR®

Can a REALTOR really help you sell your home?

The answer is YES. When you're ready to think about selling your property, you need to ask yourself the following questions: Do you have the time, energy, sources of information, and contacts to do the job yourself? If you were one of the 'do-it-yourself' people, would the results be as good or better than they would be if you had professional assistance? Would it have gone smoother? Would it have given you more personal time? Would you have sold for more, if a real estate agent was involved? Here are a few ways that having REALTOR® on your side can help:

Pricing Your Property

This process generally begins with a determination of a reasonable asking price. Your real estate agent can give you up-to-date information on what is happening in the marketplace and the price, financing, terms, and condition of competing properties. These are key factors in getting your property sold at the best price, quickly and with minimum hassle.

Marketing Your Property

The next step is a marketing plan. Often, your agent can recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability of the property. Marketing includes the exposure of your property to other real estate agents and the public. In many markets across the country, over 50% of real estate sales are cooperative sales; that is, a real estate agent other than yours brings in the buyer. Your agent acts as the marketing coordinator, disbursing information about your property to other real estate agents through a Multiple Listing Service or other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, etc. The REALTOR® Code of Ethics requires REALTORS® to utilize these cooperative relationships when they benefit their clients.

Advertising is part of marketing. The choice of media and frequency of advertising depends a lot on the property and specific market. For example, in some areas, newspaper advertising generates phone calls to the real estate office but statistically has minimum effectiveness in selling a specific property. Your real estate agent will know when, where and how to advertise your property.

Negotiating

The negotiation process deals with much the same issues for both buyers and sellers. Your agent can help you objectively evaluate every buyer's proposal without compromising your marketing position. This initial agreement is only the beginning of a process of appraisals, inspections, and financing -- a lot of possible pitfalls. Your agent can help you write a legally binding, win-win agreement that will be more likely to make it through the process.

Monitoring, Renegotiating and Closing

Between the initial sales agreement and closing (or settlement), questions may arise. For example, unexpected repairs are required to obtain financing or a cloud in the title is discovered. The required paperwork alone is overwhelming for most sellers. Your agent is the best person to objectively help you resolve these issues and move the transaction to closing (or settlement).

Be sure your real estate agent is a REALTOR®. Why?

  • High Visibility - Since the MLS works as a clearinghouse through which more than 500 real estate firms exchange information on homes they have listed for sale, it assures your home of the widest possible exposure to prospective buyers, including being posted on RILiving.com, Rhode Island's most comprehensive real estate web site.
  • Quick Dissemination - As soon as your listing is taken, it is entered into the computer where it becomes immediately accessible by Participants who subscribe to the on-line computer service. All Participants receive a bi-weekly book of the current active listings.
  • Computerized Database - More and more offices are installing computer terminals in their own offices. These units provide printouts of absolutely up-to-the-minute information on homes that have just been put on the market in your community, homes that have just been sold, and the number of prospective buyers who are interested in your home.
  • Knowledge - A REALTOR® knows the local housing market and can help you set a fair market price based on the quarterly sold reports which can show you what has recently been sold through the MLS. With this information, you can feel much more confident about the price you put on your home.
  • Effectiveness - You have the REALTOR's® professional help to rely on at every step of the sale, from first showing to final closing. The REALTOR® doesn't waste your time with casual sightseers or window shoppers. The prospects the REALTOR® brings to see your home are genuinely interested.