Do You Need A Real Estate Pro?

Are real estate agents needed?  Why?  Why Not?

John Kavaller

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September 06 2010 - Jeffersonville
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People hire Real Estate agents much for the same reason you hire any other professional such as a dentist, accountant, lawyer, landscaper or even an MD. Chances are you could do it yourself but hiring an experienced person will make the process easier and with fewer errors and issues.

In other words you are hiring an advisor to help you complete a task or reach a goal.

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September 06 2010
You really think you can do your own dental work and surgery?
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September 06 2010
Its kind of like cutting your own grass or doing your own laundry. you could do these things yourself, but why not hire a professional?
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September 06 2010

Absolutely yes! Every Seller and Buyer need a Real Estate pro.

Sellers: If you are going to try to sell it on your own, you have no clue what the property is really worth,how to market the property, the realities of buyers thinking, or the fact that everyone that drives by (qualified or not) will want to see your home...you don't know who is coming in to "size up" your valuables.

Seller Negotiating: You are too close to the deal and need a person to take you out of remembering every pennny you put into the housel...you will be ineffective at negotiating...gauranteed.

Buyers:  If you think you can buy a home alone, I gaurantee you will get shafted somewhere along the line....starting with the price.  Just because the sellers says it is worth XXX does not mean it is.  Do you know what to ask for in the contract?  Do you know what the small print means?  You will not even know your options until problems come up...by that time you will need an attorney to try to salvage your escrow deposit.

A buyer negotiating for themselves is a totally unqualified person for the job.  
 
Don't kid yourselves...trying to eliminate a Sales Pro will result in less money in your pocket...I know it, have seen it and it happens all the time.

Eve in Orlando

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September 06 2010
Eve:

Your post is a little insulting. Give buyers and sellers some credit, they aren't completely stupid.
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September 06 2010
Tiffany,
You are lucky that you live in a modern society and have a choice. The less fortunate in the world or in previous eras had no choice but to do their own dentistry and surgery at home. Often dentistry was just a matter of pulling a painful tooth and people did just that for a long time.

However, I am sorry that the main point was missed. While not as dramatic, it is just as absurd not to hire a good Real Estate agent as your trusted advisor. While you can sell or purchase your own home it is much wiser to hire someone to help you through the process, it just makes sense.

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September 06 2010
Enrique, it would help your case a bit if you had some reasons to back up your position.

For example, despite real estate agents being involved in almost all transactions, the majority of civil lawsuits are STILL about real estate today; Hardly serves as a basis for proving that there are fewer errors or issues due to the involvement of agents.

Also, it is a bit ridiculous to compare the profession of real estate sales agent, which requires a 100 hour course, and tests a house pet could pass, with Dentist, Accountant, lawyer, or MD. It is 1000 times easier to be an agent then a doctor for example.

Landscaper I'll give you. By the way, I do my own gardening, so what was your point again?
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September 06 2010
Hi Roberto,

Thanks for your message.
Of course that it is much harder to become a doctor than a Real Estate Agent.  No discussion here, none.

However the point is not that one profession is harder than the other, rather it is to illustrate that it is absurd not to consider hiring an expert to help you achieve a task.

The original question was:
Are real estate agents needed?

Well, yes they are if you want  to share the experience of a licensed agent. Experience is often that you have made the mistakes before.
If for no other reason, is it not worth to get the often free advice of an agent?



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September 06 2010
fair enough Enrigue. I believe most buyers are better off with an experienced agent. That being said, I've also witnessed behaviors of agents who have no ethics, no honesty, and really almost no knowledge about real estate too, so how to pick the right agent becomes problematic.

Also, when it comes to analyzing the market, 99.9% of agents saw nothing wrong in 2006, so their viewpoints today are extremely suspect to say the least.

Obviously, I am an agent, I believe I add value to a buyer or a seller, but hardly anything along the lines of what the neurosurgeon added to the experience when I needed my back surgery...
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September 06 2010

Thank you Tiffany for "stalking" my posts and drawing more attention to my opinion.

Eve in Orlando

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September 06 2010
Actually Eve, your post was ridiculous. Sellers can easily find out what prices homes around them are selling for, as can buyers. To say that every seller and/or buyer is going to do bad without an agent is simply nonsense, and I can prove it:

If the seller sells at too low of a price, some buyer without an agent just got a great deal. Likewise If a buyer pays too much, as you imply, without an agent, some seller just cleaned up.

I hardly think Tiffany's differing opinion with yours counts as stalking.
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September 06 2010
I just happen to read a lot of posts, and Eve posts things I don't agree with or that are spam on occassion....but thank you Rob. Always a pleasure to be on a thread with you and it happens frequently.

So perhaps I was too succinct in my previous answers. Like Rob, I do believe there is indeed value in the agency relationship. However, I feel like it is severely undermined when when puff up what we can and cannot do. When everything goes well, we can fetch data, show houses, explain as much as were are allowed to a contract by state statutes, recommend service providers that don't seem creepy, etc.....BUT when things go bad, there is very little we can legally do. We might be able to bed or plead with the other side, offer renegotiation tips, but really, almost every horrible thing that can go wrong in a transaction should involve an attorney. So what does that make us? Basically high end personal shoppers, and that's ok. Saying that we are "needed" or it is "absurd" not to use us, well that's just plain silly.

Sit through one week of law school and you will go through more work than is required in most states for a real estate license (the same probably applies for medical school). In fact, in many states, you need substantially more hours to legally accept money for giving someone a massage than to have a real estate license.

Most states do not require a high school diploma, no states that I am aware of require any sort of contruction or inspection background, we are not required to pass a graduate level contract law course - or really know basically anything about contracts. I don't believe we are required to have knowledge of current lending standards. We aren't sent through a graduate level negotiation class, or a remedies class. Most of the certifications we can earn are nothing more than a few hours that may or may not have a test on the end. The tests I took to get my licenses were basic vocab, simple math, and some really rudimentary statutory questions.

Does this mean agents choose not to do continuing education? No, many do. Rob is an economic wizard. I have a MBA and am plowing through a law degree...but it isn't required to do more than the state minimum (and I bet a nickel that's what a majority of agents do), and in many, if not all, states that really isn't enough to keep up in changes in the law.

My point is be real about our skills and what we can and do offer. We are there for people who don't have the time or inclination to learn the process for themselves or sift through dozens of listings, and we have some limited "agents only" information that we pay to have a monopoly on. Not everyone needs us or wants us, and the biggest part of the purchase - learning the market and determining fair price - that is something the buyer or seller should decide on their own, it is their financial fate.
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September 06 2010
Won't let me edit it should say "beg," not "bed". Ooops!
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September 06 2010
What I really think is riduculous is that my opinion is fodder for repeated stalking. 

This forum is supposed to be a place where agents offer advice  and voice their opinions...yet there is a handful of regulars that ruin the spirit of cooperation by "stalking" other posts to criticize...the pattern is obvious.

There are many posts that I think are dumb, or wrong, or boring, or silly, or a waste of my time to read...but I am no longer in grade school, so I move on.  Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

The sad thing is that no one is from the same area, so why the need to be so hostile and competitive?

Please,...knock it off!

Eve in Orlando
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September 06 2010
Home professionals is a very good idea, especially in this market. Loyalty and hard work seem to go hand in hand. Finding someone who you trust and that will work hard means that depsite everything finding a home and knowing all of the details that go into home buying will likely be more of a success in my opinion.
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September 06 2010
The way I see it is some folks don't like to paint, or don't know how to paint so they hire a painter.

And there are also folks that don't want to sell their own home or buy a home on their own. So they hire a real estate agent.

Some painters are incredible craftsman, some are like a monkey with a brush. There's good painters and bad painters.

Likewise there are good real estate agents and barely capable real estate agents.

But it's doubtful that there has ever been a painter that has told a homeowner that if they didn't hire a 'professional' painter, there could be dire consequences to their decision.

Likewise, I doubt that there are many painters that liken their craft to brain surgery or the practice of law.

Real estate is a trade just like any other trade. We're here to help those that just don't want to do it themselves.
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September 06 2010
Eve:

Repeatedly accusing someone of stalking in a public forum could be construed as libel, but you'd need to check with an attorney for that.

This is a place where people can disagree with opinions, particularly if they are trite, out of touch with reality, and are likely to harm the profession.

Many of us read a good number of the posts, we don't have time to "stalk" individual posters....some people just post ridiculous things in many threads and regulars read a lot of threads.

You have 45 posts at the time of this reply (with ZERO thumbs up and ZERO best answers), many of us have been contributing for years to the industry and this forum, with postings well into the thousands. You may want to consider that the sort of posts you are making are the lowest common denominator.
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September 06 2010
Well said Mike.
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September 06 2010
Profile picture for Dunes....
Now there's something I never considered before...

Whine & Spam
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September 06 2010

Agents are not needed

A good agent will absolutely bring value to a transaction.

An incompetent agent could bring real legal/financial hardships

on those they "represent/consult" .

 

Personally I think the majority of consumers will benefit from skilled representation by an agent who at least strives to understand the meaning of fiduciary...hence, the decision to become an agent ...

.*a perfectly self aggrandized vision of me helping endless generations of home sellers until I passing away in escrow on my cell phone*

 

 

 

 

A different perspective is the point of asking/answering a question....right?

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September 06 2010

Do You Need A Real Estate Pro?

I asked the question because it is absolutely critical for consumers to define our legitimacy and value for themselves. Hopefully, by offering our own ideas of how our service expedites and smooths the process, the consumer comes away with sound reasons for using real estate agents.

Some people prefer to walk the new or used car lot alone with no help (read interference) from a sales person.  Others want a full-blown tour of the lot as the sales person explains different makes, models, and options.

Much like home shopping, car shopping involves many of the same issues of home ownership.  Big-ticket item, insurance, registration, taxes, paperwork and a myriad of other details attended to by the salesperson and dealership.

In essence, the car salesperson expedites the sale and transfer of a vehicle to the end consumer.  For that service, he or she receives commission.  Those who know the auto sales business understand that good moral fiber, honesty, and sincere service are rewarded by repeat business from the family and friends of the buyer.

How different is this process from introducing folks to our listings or working as a buyer's agent? We have a copious amount of proprietary information we can easily access for answers.  The consumer can also access the same information, albeit more slowly and perhaps less accurately.

Buying and selling real estate is not rocket science.  As real estate professionals, we should be careful to define what our functions are and how they serve to benefit our clients and customers.

John Kavaller



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September 07 2010
buying a property is probably the biggest desition anyone can make with their money.  A real estate broker is Stongly suggested.  Why wouldnt anyone  want someone by their side who does this every single day?
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October 09 2010
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Lets see, only one non-agent answered so far, and a few of the agents that posted indicated they were not "professional", but "NAR-bots", so, I guess the answer is the only people that need Realtors® are NAR?
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October 09 2010
 
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