Many Realtors® have heard the comment made at the closing table. The settlement statement is in the hands of the Buyer and the Seller. On that statement is the disclosure of all the costs assigned to the Buyer and the Seller including sales commissions paid to the respective Brokerages. Someone says “Wow! I’m in the wrong business! You Realtors® make a lot of money!” This perception of easy wealth is what causes the ranks of real estate licensees to swell when the market is good. There are over 8,000 salespersons licensed with the Columbus Board of Realtors. (That, by the way, is more than 4 times the number of homes we have on the market. )
As with any purchase by the consumer, what you pay is only “too much” if you don’t get equal or better value for what you have paid. This includes the services of a real estate agent. If you are hiring a licensee who exhibits little experience and the service, they provide is little more than a sign in the yard, photos with a smart phone, and entry in the MLS, you are likely overpaying. If you hire an agent who doesn’t return phone calls or texts in a timely manner, you are paying too much. If your agent leaves your dining table and you don’t know a “plan of action” or clear knowledge and understanding of pricing, protocols, and processes of the sale – ask the agent to cut their commission.
A good agent is like WAZE. (Or if you’re my age, TripTik.). It’s our job to know the road ahead of you and the best way to get there. With the greatest respect to you as a homeowner or home buyer: your Agent should be in the driver’s seat. And (very important) they should have earned your trust to allow them in the driver’s seat. Your Realtor® is there to guide you to your purchase or sale destination with fore-knowledge of potholes, detours, options, and ‘accidents’ to avoid. They should know the answers to your questions or know where to get the answers. They should be able to assure you what is “normal” to the transaction and when reactive intervention is necessary.
We are responsible for guiding you through a maze of legal documents, financial options, speculative futures, and trending pasts. It is understanding people and houses, moods and finances, law and emotions. It is climbing steps and crawling dark spaces; it is driving on ice and parking in mud. It is doing everything right and being penalized for someone else’s wrong; it is being the best in the business and functionally unemployed when the economy is in a recession. Your work is subject to the whim of a client’s loyalty and our nation’s economy.
But, back to the money. Is it true? Is it easy money? Are we all wealthy? Next week I will break down that commission check you saw at the closing table. How much of that check ends up in an agent’s bank account? That’s next week’s blog.
This blog is written by Kathy Chiero. Kathy is the Team Lead for The Kathy Chiero Group of Keller Williams Greater Columbus Realtors. Thinking of Buying or Selling? Find us www.OurOhioHome.com