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Real Estate Professionals do more for sellers than make the transaction easier - They make them money!

In fact, the average seller who uses a real estate professional makes 16% more on the sale of their home than do sellers who go it alone!  That's an average of $31,800 per home. That's one reason the level of unrepresented sellers has declined steadily in recent years. Despite five consecutive record-breaking years for home sales from 2001 through 2005, the level of unrepresented sellers has dropped from a cyclical peak of 18% of the market in 1997 to a record low of 13% in 2005, according to the 2005 National Association of REALTORS® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.

At Bergren Realty we assist both sellers and buyers with the services necessary for a successful real estate transaction, especially pricing and marketing. As real estate pros we can help price the property accurately and market it successfully using the variety of tools available today. We use the internet, print, word of mouth, mass mailings and more. As REALTORS® we know how to prepare a home and maximize value, provide broader exposure to the market and are more likely to generate multiple bids than a seller can on their own.

In addition, as REALTORS® we are experts in attracting qualified buyers. As professionals, we can show a home more objectively than can a seller who may be emotionally attached to the home, and who might become unnerved by prospective buyers' critical comments.

Here are 8 reasons why you need a Realtor...

1. A Realtor can sell your house for more money.

According to the 2000 National Association of REALTORS Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the typical FSBO home sold for $113,000, compared to $129,900 for a salesperson-assisted home. This means that even if FSBO's paid a 6% commission, they will realize $122,100.

2. A Realtor understands how to complete the many important forms and contracts.

Lead paint disclosure statement, Purchase contract, property disclosure statements - Smoke alarm disclosures,wood stove disclosures and disclaimers, mold disclosure inspection reports, contingency clause addendum, property legal description, to name just a few. According to the 2,000 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, difficulty with paperwork was the second biggest problem For Sale By Owners had in selling their homes. 

3. As a Real Estate Broker, I do this full time.

Often For Sale by Owners don't recognize how many hours a real estate salesperson spends. On average this Broker spends 100 hours on each home I sell. More than likely, you will spend much more time trying to sell your home. Believe me, many of those hours will be filled with stressful frustration such as buyers that do not show up after making an appointment, Buyers that have not been qualified for a loan, People posing as buyers looking for something to steal, and other disappointments. 

4. I have the market knowledge to price your home competitively.

As a For Sale by Owner you may know what one or two homes near you sold for, but you don't have access to the wide number of comps we do, or the market knowledge to adjust pricing. A competitive market analysis is a highly effective tool used to demonstrate the value of homes I market.  According to the 2,000 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home buyers and Sellers, setting the right price was the biggest problem cited by For Sale By Owners in selling their homes.

5. I can be objective, handle criticism of the house, and focus on how well the home suits  a buyer.

Let's face it. We all have emotional attachments to our homes and naturally emphasize the features we consider most desirable during a showing. Unfortunately, some of our favorite features may be not so favorable to potential buyers.  As a trained professional, I am more attuned to the buyer's needs and am able to highlight the home's features that have the most appeal to each buyer.

6. I can assess buyer's ability to afford a property and help to locate financing.

Often buyers, especially inexperienced ones, rely on a real estate salesperson to help them obtain a mortgage. This is a highly complex area. Finding the right lender for my buyers helps them to select the correct loan that fits their needs whether it be fixed, adjustable, balloon payment etc. Prequalifying buyers assures that they will not be trying to purchase homes they cannot obtain financing for. 

7. I know how to negotiate and overcome objections.

Balancing offers and counteroffers, as well as handling many of the contingencies that usually accompany real estate transactions, can be frustrating and frightening to For Sale by Owners. My experience has taught me how to expertly negotiate for my sellers to help them obtain the highest price for their homes. In the present market, this is usually full price or very close to full price, and in some cases above full price.  

8. I can get the transaction closed.
Many think that once the purchase agreement is signed, their work is over. I know better! Once the contract is signed, the real work begins. Many, many sales fall apart after the sales agreement is signed. Here are just a few of the hours and hours of work still needing to be done to close: 

Making sure all contingencies are met within specified contract times.
Home inspection - repair negotiations 
Opening of escrow and reviewing escrow instructions 
Delivering Buyers security deposit monies to escrow 
Checking building permits for improvements.
Title Insurance - making sure title is clear and salable.
Obtaining and reviewing CC&R's where applicable and delivering to buyers for their approval.
Following up with buyer's lender to make sure all loan documentation has been recieved and is ready for loan approval.
Do a Walk-thru inspection with the buyers to assure that required repairs have been done as agreed to in purchase contract.
Meet with the buyer or seller, at closing to assure all necessary instructions have been followed and to check final HUD statement for correct charges.

Notes of interest

The typical For Sale by Owner is 46 years old and has a median household income of $75,800 close to the $74,600 median income of those who use real estate professionals. However, the median For Sale by Owner selling price was $145,000, compared with the median agent-assisted transaction price of $175,000.

The latest National Association of Realtors survey found that only 20 percent of For Sale by Owners used the Internet as a marketing tool, 71 percent of home shoppers used the Internet in their search. Most buyers, 41 percent, first learned about the home they purchased from a real estate agent.

Because sellers are faced with a number of challenges, only half of recent For Sale by Owners said they would sell their current home without the assistance of an agent, while many were unsure of what they'd do. The biggest problem areas for For Sale by Owners were understanding and completing paperwork, preparing a home for sale, getting the right price and having enough time for all aspects of the sales process.

Security for the For Sale by Owner

Very Important:

Never set an appointment with anyone to see your home unless they have given you their name and phone number and you have called back to verify that number. Say "Let me check with my husband, friend or..for the best time and I will call you back".

Do not let potential buyers know your schedule. For example, when you are not home, when you pick up the kids, when you work, when you will be on vacation....

Only give the prospect information about the house never give information like, we don't have a security system, dead bolts, etc.

Never let strangers into your house when children are present. Have a neighbor look out for you until the strangers are gone.

Don't let strangers into your house without identification. If they say they are a real estate agent, ask for their card and call their office for verification if you do not recognize them.

Keep a list of those who have looked at your house. Include the following: Name, phone numbers, addresses, descriptions of their cars, tag numbers and any additional information which could be helpful in the event of a future burglary. All these people could be suspects.

Remove valuable items from the house. Guns, jewelry, silverware, and collections. Anything of value is a target for thieves, including prescription drugs.

Never leave the stranger alone. Watch everything they do when in your house. 

Here is a special offer to For Sale by Owners

According to statistics, 71% of buyers searched for a home on the internet.  Only 20% of For Sale By Owners advertised on the internet.

At aboslutely no charge, For Sale by Owners may provide us with information and photos that will be viewed on our web site. They will be under no obligation to list for this FREE service. Buyers will be presented with the owners phone number and may contact them directly if they wish.  Either way, it is a win, win situation. The For Sale by Owner may sell their home themselves, or we may obtain buyers for them.

Also, a Virtual tour can be provided at a minimal cost.

Still want to go it alone?  Bergren Realty has a video especially for you:

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This tape is A Complete Guide to Marketing and Selling Your Own Home and is 23 minutes long.  

It covers the entire process of home selling including Marketing, Selling and Closing. It is available for your viewing FREE FOR THE ASKING. Call Bergren Realty at 928 830-8560 for delivery instructions.

All information is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed. All interested parties should rely on their own verifications
Ken Bergren
Ken Bergren