Abundant information available on the internet has tricked some house hunters and sellers into believing they are experts in brokering real estate transactions. Not so, according to the real estate team of Scott Loney and Alicia Worley, Realtors at Coldwell Banker Kappel Gateway Realty in Fairfield, Calif.
“The internet is not a live human being or licensed professional Realtor with years of experience in evaluating homes and negotiating the best return on your investment,” Loney and Worley wrote in an April 23 column for the Fairfield-Suisun, California Daily Republic.
“That purely takes a professional Realtor who has a track record of getting their clients the highest return on every one of their real estate investments,” they wrote.
Here, Loney and Worley share some of the myths they’ve encountered:
Listing your home higher than what you expect to get. Listing your home at too high a price may result in your getting a lower price when it sells because buyers and agents often bypass homes that are priced above market value. “It’s true you can always lower the price if the house doesn’t garner any offers in the first few weeks. But that comes with its own set of problems,” they wrote.
You can get a better deal as a buyer if you don’t use a real estate agent. If the house is listed with a real estate agent, the total sales commission is built into the price, according to Loney and Worley. If the buyers don’t have an agent, the seller’s agent receives the entire commission.
You can save money selling your home yourself. The two agree it’s not impossible to sell a home on your own, but buyers typically expect a substantial discount when you do. In essence, what you save on a real estate commission may end up meaning a lower price.
“In the end, a professional Realtor could have gotten the seller a greater return on their investment as Realtors are professional negotiators,” they wrote.
You should renovate your kitchen and bathroom before you sell. If your kitchen and baths are in good condition, leave them alone or you may experience unintended consequences. According to the authors, prospective buyers may not share your taste, but they don’t want to remodel rooms that have just been renovated. A better strategy is to adjust your price accordingly.
You’ll earn back what you spend on renovations. Quoting statistics from Remodeling magazine’s 2015 Cost vs. Value Report, the authors reported the only renovation that is likely to give a 100% return on your investment is a new front door.
“You’re likely to recoup only 67.8% of what you spent on a major kitchen remodel and 70% of what you spent on a bathroom remodel on a midrange home,” they wrote.
Open houses sell properties with the right strategic approach. According to Loney and Worley, open houses rarely result in the sale of a home. However, a professional Realtor with years of experience knows how to properly stage and plan a successful open house that will increase the likelihood of a sale.
The agent who shows you homes or lists your home represents your interests. Every industry has a handful of not-so-great professionals. The duo suggests buyer and sellers research potential agents before hiring them. “Most brokerages require buyers and sellers to sign a Disclosure Regarding Real Estate Agency Relationships, indicating that they understand whom the agent represents,” they wrote.
What other myths have you encountered? Feel free to share them in the comments below.