Selling Your Home

Are You Ready to Sell?

So you have decided to sell your home. The keyword here is “decided.” Before you put your home on the market, make sure you have really decided you are ready to sell. If you have not made this decision emotionally, you will set yourself up to lose money on one of your biggest investments in life. Staying emotionally attached to your house means you will more than likely not prepare your home to sell, you will not de-personalize the transaction and you will tend to overprice your house. In the long run, this will cause you to lose money. Know that you are ready to detach and let go of the emotional tie to your house. You will then be in a position to start researching your REALTOR® and be ready to listen to the advice of the expert. How will you know when you have detached and are emotionally ready to sell? You will know this when you are okay with de-personalizing your house in preparation to sell. You will also know you are ready when you are willing to find out what a Comparable Market Analysis says the fair market value is of your home and you are willing to list it within 5% of the value. Then, you know you are ready to sell.

Why Use a REALTOR® When Selling a Home?

A real estate agent can help you understand everything you need to know about the home selling process.

Not all real estate licensees are the same; only those who are members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®(NAR) are properly called REALTORS®. REALTORS® are committed to treating all parties to a transaction honestly. REALTORS® subscribe to a strict Code of Ethics and are expected to maintain a higher level of knowledge of the process of buying and selling real estate. An independent survey reported that 84% of home buyers would use the same REALTOR® again.

Real estate transactions are one of the biggest financial dealings of most people’s lifetime. Transactions today usually exceed $100,000. If you had a $100,000 income tax problem, would you attempt to deal with it without the help of a certified professional accountant? If you had a $100,000 legal question, would you deal with it without the help of an attorney? Considering the small upside cost and the large downside risk, it would be wise to work with a professional REALTOR® when you are selling a home.

If you're still not convinced of the value of a REALTOR®, here are more reasons to use one:

1. When selling your home, your REALTOR® can give you up-to-date information on what is happening in the marketplace as well as 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.

2. Often, your REALTOR® can recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability of your property.

3. Your REALTOR® markets your property to other real estate agents and the public. In many markets across the country, over half of real estate sales are cooperative sales; that is, a real estate agent other than yours brings in the buyer. Your REALTOR® acts as the marketing coordinator, distributing information about your property to other real estate agents through a Multiple Listing Service (MLS) 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.

4. Your REALTOR® will know when, where, and how to advertise your property. There is a misconception that advertising sells real estate. NAR studies show that 82% of real estate sales are the result of agent contacts through previous clients, referrals, friends, family, and personal contacts. When a property is marketed with the help of your REALTOR®, you do not have to allow strangers into your home. Your REALTOR® will generally prescreen and accompany qualified prospects through your property.

5. Your REALTOR® 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 – and a lot of possible pitfalls. Your REALTOR® can help you write a legally binding, win-win agreement that will be more likely to make it through the process.

Your REALTOR® can help close the sale of your home. Issues may arise between the initial sales agreement and closing (also called settlement or escrow), for example, unexpected repairs might be required to obtain financing or a title problem is discovered. The required paperwork alone is overwhelming for most sellers. Your REALTOR® is the best person to objectively help you resolve these issues and move the transaction to closing.

1o Things You Need To Know About Your REALTOR®

ONE - The REALTOR® that you are considering, how many listings do they have and how much volume have they sold during the current year? How does this compare to other REALTORS® in the area?

TWO - Does the REALTOR® you are considering work full-time? Have they earned any designations since they obtained their real estate license?

THREE - What is the marketing plan your potential REALTOR® has to help you sell your home faster? The best real estate agents will have a marketing plan that will cover the main information sources used in home searches.

FOUR - Ask for a written commitment of the services the REALTOR® will provide for you during the marketing and during the closing process of your property.

FIVE - Ask for the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the last three (five) Sellers you have represented? Call these people and ask the following questions:

  • Was the REALTOR® available to you in a timely manner when you needed to get a hold of them?
  • Was the final selling price of your home close to the original price the REALTOR suggested that you list at?
  • Did the REALTOR® live up to their marketing plan?
  • Did you feel that this REALTOR® was a strong negotiator?
  • Did your REALTOR® listen to your concerns and do their best to address them?
  • Would you recommend this person to your friends?

SIX - Does the REALTOR® offer to do a Comparative Market Analysis before suggesting a List Price.

SEVEN - Does the REALTOR® know the current rate of absorption?

EIGHT - How does the REALTOR® handle negotiating commissions?

NINE - Does the REALTOR’S® company have a large market share?

TEN - Does the REALTOR'S® company have a plan for helping you to avoid litigation?

It's All About Relationships

When you are deciding on a REALTOR, it is important to take your time and pay attention to how you feel while talking to and being around this person. Even the #1 selling REALTOR® will not be able to work with ALL people. There must be a good fit between REALTOR® and client. The relationship between REALTOR® and client is a temporary intimate relationship. It is intimate in that you, as the Seller, will be sharing personal information with your REALTOR®. You will be sharing details of your financial situation, details of your experience with your home, feelings around selling your home and fears and anxieties about leaving your home. It is important that you feel comfortable with your REALTOR®. Take the time to interview the REALTOR®. Decide if you believe this is a person you can trust, confide in and have confidence to work hard for you and who values your wants and needs. Remember – it is all about relationships!

Professional Fees


During the Pre-Listing conference the REALTOR® professional fee is negotiated between the listing agent and the seller. This fee goes toward what is called risk capital. See below for a breakdown of these expenses.

There is also a Transaction Fee of $150.00 that is only charged and collected when the property is sold and closed. This fee goes directly to the Transaction Coordinator for her services from the time the sales contract is signed and through closing.

Also, know that we offer a fair commission to other co-operating brokers in the area as compensation if one of them secures a buyer for your home. They in turn split that amount with their company. The balance is split between the company, Eufaula Lakeshore Realty and the in-house agent responsible for the listing. The portion the agent keeps covers his/her salary and business expenses to sell your home. Those business expenses or risk capital include the following:


Money that a REALTOR® puts to work for you even before a buyer is found:

  • Telephone
  • Mobile Phone, Fax, Long Distance, Internet Service, Voice Mail
  • Office Postage
  • Daily Office Mail, Fed Ex, Courier Service
  • Dues and Subscriptions
  • Printing Supplies
  • Business Auto Expense
  • Education and Training
  • Legal and Professional Fees

  • Business Equipment
  • Business Insurance
  • Advertising
  • Artwork/Design
  • Flyers, Postcards and handouts
  • Photography
  • Internet Advertising
  • Website Fees
  • Broker Management Fees

Who is the Busiest of Them All?

The bottom line to selling your property/home is – the maximum exposure in the advertising market in addition to correct pricing. This yields the best and highest price possible for your property. This means you need to pay attention when choosing your REALTOR® to who has the best marketing plan and who is the most thorough when providing a Comparative Market Analysis for you.

Look around and see who is doing the most business and who the busiest REALTORS® in the area are. The two best ways to investigate this is by paying attention to the number of yard signs you see and the amount of advertising on the internet.