It’s been well-established real estate agents are crucial players in any real estate transaction. A recent post by Maureen Hughes, lead listing specialist of The Wayne Megill Real Estate Team of Keller Williams Brandywine Valley, in West Chester, Pa., explains why a broker’s expertise is particularly important to sellers.

“In my experience, there are several reasons you should consider before you take on the challenge of selling you[r] home without the help of a realtor,” Hughes wrote in “Agents improve results in real estate sales,” published May 6 on Pennsylvania’s Daily Local News. “For the vast majority, it could severely hamper the sale of their home.”

Here are Hughes’s five reasons why real estate agents are vital to a home sale —

They are masters at negotiating — Sellers will need to negotiate with several people when selling their home, including the buyer, the residential appraiser, the buyer’s agent, the home inspector and, in some instances, the buyer’s attorney. Without an agent, it will be up to the seller to handle any potential questions these entities may have.

“Typically, a realtor would field all of these negotiations, but in FSBO, you will be the one to answer them,” Hughes wrote.

They are experts on getting exposure for your listing — Real agents know how to market themselves and their listings and will put together a plan that ensures your listing reaches the potential buyers. According to Hughes, recent studies show more than 89% of buyers use the internet to search for home, while less than 20% use newspaper ads.

“Most agents have an internet strategy to promote the sale of your home,” she wrote.

They get results — Homeowners report that among the four ways they found a home, buying directly from the seller wasn’t in the top two, Hughes wrote. According to her article, 44% of homeowners reported the internet as the top method used, with using a real estate agent coming in second at 33%. Contact information from a yard sign and newspaper listings came in third and fourth, at 9% and 1% respectively.

They keep abreast of changes in a constantly changing industry — “The paperwork involved in selling and buying a home has increased dramatically as industry disclosures and regulations  have become mandatory,” Hughes wrote. For this reason, she noted, the number of FSBOs has decreased from 19% to 8% during the last 20-plus years.

They make more money for the seller —  Homeowners believe they will make (or keep) more money if they list the home themselves. However, according to Hughes, studies show that homes sold by brokers typically yield more money than those sold by owner. Real estate agents will set the appropriate price for a home to get close to if not full asking price.

“Although an agent receives a commission check, you may still benefit from higher home sales and therefore higher profits when all is said and done,” Hughes wrote.