August 27, 2008

If your agent can’t stand up for their own worth, how do you expect they’ll represent you at the negotiating table?? A Perspective on Hiring a Realtor to Help in Your Atlanta Real Estate Purchase.

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , at 3:54 pm by winterbaserva

No doubt, real estate is hard work. And yes, if you work hard enough, the benefits do pay off. I agree with the fact that technology and the internet have changed the face of real estate and allow buyers a significant advantage that was once not available to them. The tech boom now allows buyers the opportunity to search for Atlanta real estate and Atlanta foreclosures online, as well as get neighborhood information more easily and even run their own CMA’s, etc.

What buyers don’t realize is that as much information as they can pull up online, there is a whole other piece of the pie they don’t have access to, like seller’s property disclosures, Atlanta short sales or foreclosures that haven’t shown up in property records or posted in realtor.com (which drops your property value), how long a property has been on the market and overall neighborhood statistics.
And, as the real estate market has shifted, many Atlanta realtors and brokerages try to separate themselves and scrounge for business in any way possible by offering a “buyer cash back” program or “buyer incentives” (of only which one of those is legal by the way).

Look, I’m a fan of making sure people are taken care of when they provide a service. But, BUYERS, it’s VITAL to ask yourself one VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION: If the agent that represents you doesn’t stand up for their own worth, how do you think they will represent you at the negotiating table??

A typical transaction can run anywhere from 20-200 hours of work, depending on many factors including: how long you’ve been looking, distance between areas, time spent in the car, lunches and dinners, setting appointments, checking tax records, writing offers, working negotiations, following up with inspections, attending walk throughs, ensuring all paperwork is within state laws and guidelines, arranging documents with the closing attorney, copying, scanning, faxing, telephone time, not to mention answering calls from clients at all times of the day and night throughout the process.  That’s just a small part of it; I’ve left out about 50 more things that is required for a successful transaction. On a foreclosure or short sale property, double those hours.

I LOVE my career and each and each of those steps are important to the process. More importantly, I take EXTRA time and care to make sure my buyers are always protected along the way. So, don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about my workload, I’m just saying that I earn EVERY PENNY of the brokerage fee that is being paid. And, luckily for you as the buyer, it doesn’t cost you a cent to have my knowledge, expertise and guidance.

So, BUYERS, I encourage you to really look at the agents in your areas providing these services. Do they provide “ala carte” services?, are there additional fees that will be deducted based on the level of service provided?, do you really trust someone who is basically saying “I don’t feel I’m worth my full brokerage fee?”  More importantly, interview their previous clients and find out how “well they were taken care of” or what the process was like for them. I would bet that whatever tiny allowance was given to them was probably not worth the amount of work they put into it to get it.

So, just like with everything in life, we have choices.  And, personally, I prefer shopping at Neiman Marcus over Wal-Mart. Where do you shop??

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