It may seem counterintuitive, but the ‘hotter’ the real estate market, the more sellers are likely to need a Realtor. Never has this been more true for Oregon homesellers. Here are a few reasons why, plus a secret some homebuyers don’t want you to know.
The ‘I’ll Save On The Commission’ Fairy Tale
Sellers sometimes talk with a prospective buyer interested in their home before its listed. This is often before other, more highly motivated buyers find out. For sellers hoping to save money on a real estate commission, going it alone might seem like a plausible option. However it’s fraught with multiple errors. Even before addressing any perceived savings in commission (which a notable study has shown generally isn’t true), expert Realtors spend years gaining expertise in their profession. This includes the mundane, like drafting concise documents and sometimes the harrowing, like keeping clients out of trouble. Experienced Realtors also learn what’s normal when counseling homesellers faced with vital decisions throughout the home selling process. But there’s also an issue involving a secret some buyers hope sellers won’t realize.
The ‘Seller Beware’ Secret
Buyers interested in your house are looking out for themselves. Unless the homebuyer is family or a very close friend, buyers are generally not inclined to do homesellers any favors. So what’s the secret that buyers hope to keep from sellers? Buyers hope to avoid competing with the open market, where they then might have to pay the actual, higher market price. Given Oregon’s current housing shortage, it’s common for properties to sell for many thousands of dollars above list price, due to ‘bidding wars.’ Shrewd buyers hope to avoid that kind of free market competition. Instead, they hope to keep their targeted property off the open market, then pocket the difference.
The Power of Multiple Listing
Did you know most Realtors have a superpower in their possession? It’s not the kind you might think. Rather than flying, seeing through walls or turning invisible, among a Realtor’s greatest power is their multiple listing system, or MLS. The MLS is a computer database that can place a home instantly in front of many thousands of buyers and their real estate agents. Ever wonder how homes get into Zillow, Realtor.com or in front of thousands of local Realtors? The MLS.
So once a property is listed in a region’s multiple listing service, ‘the cat is out of the bag.’ That’s when a buyer’s ability to avoid competing with other ready, willing and able buyers has vanished. Then, once the first offer comes…sometimes within hours or a few days…homesellers often realize what the open market value of their property REALLY is. And the dreams of buyers angling for a ‘steal’ go ‘Poof.’ Otherwise, it’s a matter of homesellers not knowing what they don’t know.
Homebuyer Pipeline: Spigot or Hydrant?
The reality is that in our current record-breaking, low-housing inventory environment, you’ll never realize how high a ‘bidding war’ might have gone on your property. That is, unless you list it on the open market, where a pent-up pipeline of buyers is literally waiting to see what you have, as they pursue their home search. All that’s needed to activate that buyer pipeline is hiring an agent with multiple listing access. Once in the system, it can seem magical. In reality, it’s typically more of a numbers game.
Homeselling By The Numbers
Speaking of numbers, studies show homesellers who place their property on the open market with a Realtor sell for far more than the difference in commission. One National Association of Realtors study suggests listed homes sell for 13% more than ‘for sale by owners:’
“…the typical agent-assisted home sale typically has a 13 percent higher sales price than the typical FSBO sale.”
Thus, perceived ‘for sale by owner’ real estate commission ‘savings’ is essentially ‘phantom money’ that was never there.
If you’re considering the sale of an Oregon property, contact Certified Realty using the form below for a free consultation. You can also email us direct at info@CertifiedRealty.com, or call/text (503) 682-1083.