As of late, especially in our local Okanagan market, there has been a large influx of alternate commission real estate salespeople who offer “reduced” commission rates, all the while advertising similar, if not expanded, marketing and services.
This practice is leaving many home sellers perplexed, asking themselves, “Why would I hire a full service Realtor® when I can save so much money by hiring one of these boutique companies?”
Although the Competition Bureau does not allow us to make direct comparisons, what I can do is provide you with a series of questions for you to to ask any real estate salesperson when considering hiring them to market and negotiate on your behalf for your largest asset – your home. The answers to these crucial questions will help you decide whether you will ultimately net more from hiring the services of a full service Realtor ® or whether hiring an alternative commission salesperson is good enough for you.
These questions are as follows:
Question #1: How much more do your listings sell for than the real estate board average?
Hint: This will help you to determine whether this salesperson has verifiable results of success or whether their focus is on reduced margin/quick sales model (eg. The Walmart model. In this case it’s your margin, your equity in your home, at stake).
Question #2: As a high percentage of the sales in the Okanagan are to out of towners, what does your firm do and what do you specifically do you attract that business?
Hint: Having a website is no longer enough, you need worldwide coverage to sell for top dollar.
Question #3: As a high percentage of the sales in the Okanagan are to out of towners, how does your firm attract referrals from out of town Realtors®?
Hint: Realtors in franchise firms across Canada primarily refer to Realtors® in their company networks.
Question #4: If Realtors® make their income primarily on a commission basis, how will offering the Realtors® working with the buyers a reduced selling commission get them excited about showing and bringing an offer on my home?
Hint: Only a small percentage of the total listings sold are sold by the listing agent, therefore Realtor® cooperation is extremely important in getting top dollar for your home.
Question #5: If studies show that 90% of home buyers searched online during their home buying process and that 70% of home buyers use video to tour the inside of homes, will you market my home with a professional video?
Hint: Check websites beforehand.
The salesperson’s answers to each of these questions will help you make a more informed decision as to the benefits of hiring a full service Realtor® versus an alternate commission salesperson.
*Source: Digital House Hunt, National Association of Realtors
By the Salt Fowler Team