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Should I Hire A Real Estate Agent To Sell My Home?

Apr 19, 2008
So you've decided to sell your house or condo. It's one of the biggest decisions you'll make, and everyone who has ever sold real estate knows that it can be time consuming, confusing and sometimes more difficult than you ever thought possible. Of course you could get lucky and have the perfect home in the perfect location and have to turn buyers away. But most of the time you can expect to have your home on the market for anywhere from a month to a year or more, depending on what the housing demand is for your specific area.

The next step is deciding whether or not you want to try and sell your condo or house on your own or hire a real estate agent to list it for you. There are many valid reasons for taking either route, most of them dependent upon how much time and money you want to invest yourself. If you aren't in a hurry and are up to the challenge of taking on any advertising, phone calls, home showing, paperwork or possible improvements or repairs yourself then selling on your own could be a positive experience for you. On the other hand, if you don't want to deal with talking with potential buyers, juggling any advertisements or listings for your condo or house, or handling financial or legal paperwork, then you may want to consider hiring a real estate agent to sell your property for you.

If you decide to go the process on your own, you can save a certain amount of money by not having to pay a fee or commission to an agent. As far as getting the word out about your property and reaching as many potential buyers as possible, you can spend a relatively small amount of money on ads in the real estate section of local papers. You can also purchase a for sale sign to place in your yard with a weather-proof tube that holds fliers about your home. This is great because any interested parties can stop whether or not you are home and take a flier that will tell them about the property. All you need to do is create one on your home computer or have them printed by a print shop.

With so many people using the Internet to do their shopping, including home buying, you can start a blog about your condo or house and put up pictures, both inside and out, talk about the perks of living in your neighborhood and give people a virtual show.

There are also Multiple Listing Services that allow owners to list their property for free or for a small fee. Most large services restrict listing to only licensed agents or brokers, but it is a fantastic way to reach a huge pool of potential buyers. The MLS search options match homes and condos with buyers with a minimal amount of hassle. It also allows the agent who is handling the property to be reached to answer any questions.

The benefits of hiring an agent are usually worth the cost. A good real estate agent can do all of the leg work for you, including getting your property on the MLS and keeping it updated. He or she will handle all of the other advertising needs and schedule showings and possibly even an open house where a large group of people can view your home, usually on a weekend afternoon.

A real estate agent will be able to give suggestions on how to improve your condo or home with simple touches like fresh paint in some rooms, clearing out clutter to make a good first impression on entering the home and sometimes even do the work themselves or hire someone to do it.

Because a real estate agent is familiar with the median home value in your area, they should be able to help you set a good price for your property and may even know a client who would be interested in buying from you. Agents are able to help with negotiating price, filing the necessary forms and paperwork and even help secure financing for a potential buyer. It takes a lot of stress off of both the seller and the buyer to have someone knowledgeable take care of the technical side.

If you are selling a luxury condo or even negotiating to buy one yourself, then having an agent is a definite plus. If you've bought a unit in a high-rise during the pre-construction phase and then wish to sell after closing takes place, then an agent maybe be able to get you the best price possible. High profile developments like the http://www.bestchicagocondos.com/pre-construction-condos/chicago-spire-2.html are often only marketed through specific sales agents, and working with them makes the process much smoother.

Whether you hire an agent or sell your home on your own, the best advice anyone can give you is to remember that the market may fluctuate but eventually it evens out. Don't sell or buy on impulse.
About the Author
Paula Cherrist writes real estate related articles for Best Chicago Condos, where you can find the most up to date information on Chicago Condos For Sale
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