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5 Reasons to Reconsider Selling Your House Without an Agent

5 Reasons to Reconsider Selling Your House Without an Agent

Most things look simple when professionals do them, that is why many people who want to maximize their profits are tempted to sell their own home instead of hiring a professional. Unfortunately, that rarely ends as well. Real estate agents know how to make a sale go more quickly and pleasantly than any amateur, and they can often get a higher price because they understand how to negotiate. There are strong reasons to hire a real estate agent to handle the sale, and it is important to understand them in order to make an informed choice about hiring one.

1. Professionalism

Appearances are everything on the market. While buyers like to think that they calmly and objectively consider the benefits and drawbacks of each house, the way that you present it will have a big impact on their choices. A professional tour of the home and presentation of information will make the home look much better than a casual one, even if the information is the same either way.

A real estate agent will be able to perfect the presentation, but the act of hiring one will help to make you look like you are serious about selling your home. It also makes your home look more valuable and appealing since you were willing to go to the effort of getting a professional to handle the sale. That appearance is valuable, and you can only get it by bringing in a professional agent.

2. Negotiations

There is an art to negotiation. People take classes to learn how to make deals and persuade people to see things their way, and those who have mastered the skill have a massive advantage in the marketplace. Negotiating properly requires an understanding of the human mind, the nature of the market, and strong communication skills. While anyone can read a few articles about negotiation on the Internet, it takes a great deal of practice to cultivate those skills and master the art of bargaining.

Having a trained negotiator on your side can make all the difference when the time comes to work out the final price for the home. It can also help with persuading buyers who are considering several different homes to settle on yours instead of buying one of the alternatives. This is particularly important in competitive markets where buyers are likely to have their own representatives to help them buy a home. Those agents will be skilled negotiators, and an untrained seller will be outmatched when bargaining with them.

3. Marketing Skills

Buyers can only make an offer on a house if they know that it is on the market. While it is true that anyone can take out an ad in the newspaper and post their home on popular real estate websites, those techniques are not particularly useful. Relatively few of the people who are interested in buying a home will be looking in those areas, particularly when they are in the market for a valuable or unusual home. Those sites can also be inadequate because they do not do a good job of pointing out a home’s best features, or convincing a potential buyer that they want to look at the home. They’re fine in an environment with no competition, but they fall short when they compete against real estate agents.

Agents can answer any questions that a potential buyer has, address their concerns, and direct their attention to the home’s best points. They can also look at a home and identify the features that will help it to sell quickly, which is a skill that most people lack. The end result is that a real estate agent will make sales more quickly and efficiently than the average homeowner.

4. Legal Assurance

The real estate industry is subject to a huge variety of rules and regulations. Some of those laws relate to taxes that must be paid on the sale, while others deal with liability, disclosure requirements, and a variety of other factors. The penalties for failing to comply with these laws can be quite severe, and many people who lack experience in the industry do not even realize that there are laws that they could be breaking by accident during a sale.

Real estate agents are intimately familiar with the laws that govern their profession. They can make sure that every part of the sale is done in accordance with the law, which minimizes the risks associated with selling a home. In many cases, the cost of hiring an agent to handle the sale will be lower than the cost of hiring a lawyer if you accidentally break a law during the process. It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to legal business, and getting help is the best way to stay safe in most cases.

5. Increased Profits

The choice between hiring a professional real estate agent and attempting a DIY sale usually comes down to money. The people who sell their house on their own generally hope to increase their profits by keeping the agent’s commission for themselves. In principle, it is a reasonable plan. In practice, most people will come out ahead in purely financial terms by getting a professional to handle the sale for them, even once that agent’s fee is taken into account. That may seem unlikely, but the reasons for it are fairly simple.

Hiring a real estate agent will be profitable compared to the owner handling the sale if the agent can increase the home’s final price by more than they take as a commission for their services. That is usually the case since the agents know how to negotiate to get a better price, avoid expensive legal problems, and find buyers who are willing to pay for the home. The more competitive the market is, the more valuable these skills are, and the bigger the benefit to hiring an agent. In a market like Maryland, where the competition can be fierce and homes tend to be valuable, the difference can be gigantic.


Craig Linthicum Has over 13 years of real estate experience as well as selling some of Maryland’s most expensive properties. He will utilize market research as well as negotiation skills to get you the best price. Get a free and instant home valuation to get an overview of what your home is worth. 
Craig Associate Broker

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