Have you ever wondered what a real estate agent does? Below you will find out 10 ways a real estate agent works for and with you.
In the sometimes confusing, occasionally hectic, and often stressful world of buying and selling, what is your real agent doing behind the scenes?
Did you know that for every hour a real estate agent spends with you, he or she will spend an average of nine hours out of eyesight working on your behalf. Why? Because agents don’t get paid if they don’t close the deal! Unlike lawyers who bill by the hour, agents won’t receive a penny until (or unless) a sale comes through. It’s never a done deal until it closes and is recorded. That is the financial life of a real estate agent.
So if you’re wondering what that commission is actually going toward, here is a list of just some of the things agents do behind the scenes.
1. They search and identify properties online
Don’t we all? And yet, real estate agents research properties every day. They need to! In a market with a low number of homes for sale, they may need to act fast for their clients. Or if looking for a specific feature or style of a home for their client, agents will do specific searches with specific criteria that meet the clients' wishes. To find the right property, an agent may work with a client for months or years to find that special property. A good agent will do multiple types of searches to be aware of all potential listings for the client.
2. They go prospecting
Of course, there’s nothing like seeing a house in all its brick-and-mortar glory, which is why most agents worth their salt spend a lot of time driving around checking out new listings. It also helps them learn the market well and be able identify good deals or not, by knowing their product (properties) well.
3. They show homes
Of course, a real estate agent shows homes. They will show your home to potential buyers who often want to see it at different times of the day any day of the week. It is standard practice to have the agent of a listed property to hold the house open (generally on the weekends) to expose the home to potential buyers and their agents.
4. They spend money on marketing
In today's competitive market, the internet has changed the game. The access buyers have to identify potential properties highly depends on the quality of the pictures and the number of locations buyers can find them. The first impression is the most important factor to a potential buyer's interest level. Listing agents may incur upfront costs with no guarantee of recouping. If the property does not sell or the seller decides to remove the house from the market, these costs, such as newspaper ads, fliers, video tours, hiring a professional photographer, and premium placements on listing sites are then the expense of the agent.
5. They negotiate on behalf of their clients
Offers and counteroffers are an extremely important part of the transaction, as they can save or net you thousands of dollars on a sale. Yet getting to the right price requires written offers and counteroffers every step of the way. Not only do they write up the offer, they meet with their clients and explain all the nuances of the offer. A real estate professional understands the contract between buyer and seller and the absolute timelines contained within it. It is imperative that certain steps be completed within the timelines stated in the contract. This includes an understanding of the nuances of today's constantly changing financing options. Those individuals who chose to try to sell their home without an agent are more at risk of potential legal action including possible lawsuits.
6. They are there for the inspection
Typically buyers are working people who sometimes have difficulty finding time to be present at important appointments such as the home inspection. Inspections typically take two to three hours and it is in the buyers best interest to be present if possible but this is not always possible. But you can be assured that your agent will be there as your representative. Many times issues are discovered during the home inspection and it is important that the agent is there to discuss the issues at hand with the inspector. Anything from roofing issues to inoperative outlets will be identified and will become part of negotiations to reach agreement between the buyer and seller to both parties' satisfaction.
7. They know contractors
If you are selling a home and the inspection reveals items that need to be completed before the sale can go through, some real estate agents may have a list of approved vendors. Remember, agents go through the real estate process on a regular basis and many know contractors who do good work. They may even meet the contractor at your home to let them in and explain what work that needs to be done.
8. They play traffic cop
There are many moving parts when it comes to getting a property closed. Agents work behind the scenes to keep the transaction moving to close on time per the contract. They communicate with the lenders, title company, inspectors, the other real estate agent, and escrow to make sure they have all the details and completed documents they need to complete the process. Keeping all parties involved in the transaction is a critical component of representing a client in the transaction.
9. They smooth bumps in the road
Every transaction is unique and issues will come up. Having a reliable, experienced agent will ensure a seamless transaction. As stated above, there are many things an agent does behind the scenes that the client never sees. It’s putting out fires, and fixing issues to keep the process moving forward. This is important to reduce the potential frustration of a client.
10. They keep you calm when the pressure’s on
Good agents don’t just find you a house. The decision to buy or sell a house is a life-changing event that brings its own level of stress. An agent's job includes the ability to guide clients through the process and the knowledge provided to the client reduces the anxiety level. Communication between agent and client is an essential element from beginning to end. And since the agent has adequately explained the steps, many concerns have already been addressed.
So there you have it! A list of 10 ways a real estate agent works for you! And that's just a sampling of what a real estate agent does. By listening, communicating, and collaborating with you, agents assure clients have rewarding results.