With scams and fraud on the rise, I cannot imagine why someone would not hire a real estate professional. We are required to keep your information confidential. With your bank account and mortgage at stake, hiring an agent is critical. We are responsible for knowing the laws. Even the smoothest transactions can have issues, so having an educated professional should be your top priority. Missing even a single step in the legal process of selling your house can come back to haunt you. Relax with the peace that comes with placing your property in safe hands.
I have found over the years that most people really do not know how Realtors® earn their money, so the teacher in me decided to help my clients understand what goes on behind the scenes when I LIST a home. When you list your home, it is understand that the commission is built into the price of any home. The comparable homes in your area were sold with that price built in as well.
Buying and selling a house is a lifetime investment, and one of your largest investments. While these are only a few reasons for the importance of a real estate professional, hiring me will save you from the trouble of a lot of legal paperwork, any complications that arise, and any fraudulent schemes.
It is most important to me that all of my clients are happy with the services that I provide to them in a real estate transaction, so I put together this list to show how I earn my living on the listing side. Most people value entrepreneurship, and Realtors® really are entrepreneurs. We develop, organize, and manage our businesses to (hopefully) make a profit. But note, we are not paid anything at all until we successfully close a sale. Realtors® pay a lot of money in fees, dues, and professional development so that we can be called Realtor®; as not all agents are Realtors®. A Realtor® must subscribe to the Realtor® Code of Ethics for membership, which includes 17 articles. The 17 Articles of the Code of Ethics contain various underlying Standards of Practice.
The hours that we put in with clients are free until the keys are exchanged at closing. There have been many times that we have spent hours upon hours with clients only to be told that they have changed their minds on purchasing or selling. We are not paid anything for that time; but my hope is in the future they will buy or sell or recommend me to their family and friends.
Because I try to do my job well, most sellers do not realize everything that is involved in putting a home on the market, including pre-advertising and marketing, placing advertising, photography, holding open houses, arranging tours, getting the word out about the listing through the MLS and my own network. I also coordinate a myriad of tasks associated with the closing, including inspections, title, and insurance. Remember, I am not paid until the keys are exchanged at closing, so I will work tirelessly to get the home sold for you quickly and for a great price. I also do my absolute best to make the selling process as easy as possible for my clients.
Below are some of the services that I will provide for you:
1. Make appointment with you for listing presentation.
2. Send a written or e-mail confirmation of appointment and call to confirm.
3. Review appointment questions.
4. Provides advice on how to get your home ready for the market.
5. Research sales activity for past 6 to 18 months and all comparable currently listed properties from MLS and public databases.
6. Research “average days on market” for properties similar in type, price and location.
7. Download and review property tax information.
8. Prepare “comparable market analysis” (CMA) to establish market value.
9. Research property’s ownership and deed type.
10. Research property’s public record information for lot size and dimensions.
11. Verify legal description.
12. Verify legal names of owner(s) in county’s public property records.
13. Prepare listing presentation package with above materials.
14. Compile and assemble formal file on property.
15. Review listing appointment checklist to ensure completion of all tasks.
Listing Appointment Presentation
16. Provide you an overview of current market conditions and projections.
17. Review my credentials and accomplishments.
18. Present Sibcy Cline’s profile and position or “niche” in the marketplace.
19. Present CMA results, including comparables, solds, current listings, and expireds.
20. Offer professional pricing strategy based and interpretation of current market conditions.
21. Discuss goals to market effectively, including suggestions for staging.
22. Explain market power and benefits of multiple listing service.
23. Explain market power of Web and Social Media marketing.
24. Explain the work the broker and agent do “behind the scenes” and agent’s availability on weekends.
25. Present and discuss strategic marketing plan.
26. Review listing contract and obtain your signatures.
After Listing Agreement is Signed
27. Review current title information.
28. Confirm lot size.
29. Research for any and all unrecorded property lines, agreements, easements.
30. Prepare showing instructions for buyers’ agents and agree on showing time with seller.
31. Ask for average utility usage from last 12 months of bills.
32. Ascertain need for lead-based paint disclosure.
33. Prepare detailed list of property amenities and assess market impact.
34. Prepare detailed list of property’s “Inclusions & Conveyances with Sale.”
35. Explain benefits of Home Warranty.
36. Place Home Warranty in property file for conveyance at time of sale.
37. Provide lockbox.
38. Yard sign installation.
39. Complete “new listing checklist.”
40. Load listing into transaction management software.
Entering Property in MLS Database
41. Prepare MLS Profile Sheet–I am responsible for “quality control” and accuracy of listing data.
42. Enter property data from Profile Sheet into MLS listing database.
43. Proofread MLS database listing for accuracy, including property placement in mapping function.
44. Add property to company’s Active Listings.
45. Provide signed copies of Listing Agreement and MLS Profile Data Form.
46. Take temporary photos for upload into MLS and use in flyers.
47. Order professional photography
Marketing the Listing
48. Create Internet ads that are seen on several websites.
49. Create marketing plan for a buzz on social media, including Facebook ads.
50. Coordinate showings with owners and other agents. Promptly return all calls–weekends included.
51. Prepare mailing and contact list.
52. Generate mail-merge postcards to contact list.
53. Order “Just Listed” postcards.
54. Prepare flyers and feedback forms.
55. Review comparable MLS listings regularly to ensure property remains competitive in price, terms, conditions and availability.
56. Prepare property marketing brochure.
57. Arrange for printing or copying of supply of marketing brochures or flyers.
58. Place marketing brochures in company agent mailboxes.
59. Upload listing to company and agent Internet sites.
60. Mail “Just Listed” notice to neighborhood residents.
61. Advise Network Referral Program of listing.
62. Provide marketing data to buyers
63. Send feedback after showings.
64. Review weekly Market Study.
65. Discuss feedback from showing agents
66. Show the home to potential buyers.
67. Market for an open house.
68. Hire agents to host an open house or show the house if I cannot.
The Offer and the Contract
69. Promptly answer all calls and questions to agents who had buyers
70. Receive and review Offer to Purchase contract submitted by buyers’ agents.
71. Evaluate offer and prepare “net estimate”.
72. Prepare and convey counteroffers and acceptance.
73. Contact buyers’ agents to review buyers’ qualifications and to discuss offer.
74. Confirm buyers are pre-qualified by calling loan officer.
75. Obtain pre-qualification letter on buyers.
76. Negotiate all offers on your behalf.
77. Will send copies of contract and all addendums to closing title company.
78. Record and/or deposit buyers’ earnest money into escrow account.
79. Change MLS to “Sale Pending” and “Under-Contract Showing Restrictions”.
80. Email copies of fully signed Offer to Purchase.
81. Email copies of Offer to Purchase contract to buyers’ agent.
82. Provide copies of signed Offer to Purchase contract for office file.
83. Advise in handling additional offers to purchase submitted between contract and closing (if that happens).
84. Update social media to show “Sale Pending.”
85. Provide research for moving pods, temporary housing, and AirBnB if necessary.
Tracking the Loan Process
86. I will follow the loan processing through to the underwriter.
87. I will contact the lender weekly to ensure processing is on track.
88. I will relay final approval of buyer’s loan application to you.
89. I will coordinate buyers’ professional home inspection with you.
90. We will review home inspector’s report together with the buyers’ requests.
91. I will assist you with identifying and negotiating with trustworthy contractors for required repairs.
92. I will coordinate the appraisal with your schedule.
93. I will provide a list of your capital improvements to the appraiser.
94. I will follow up on appraisal.
95. I will assist and advise if the appraisal report comes back too low.
Closing Preparations and Duties
96. I will coordinate closing process with buyers’ agent and lender.
97. I will update closing forms and files.
98. I will ensure all parties have all forms and information needed to close the sale.
99. Buyers usually select location and time for closing, and I will convey that information to you.
100. As closing nears, I will confirm closing date and time and notify all parties.
101. I will work with buyers’ agent in scheduling and conducting buyers’ final walkthrough prior to closing.
102. I will request final closing figures from lender and title company.
103. We will review closing figures to ensure accuracy.
104. I will forward verified closing figures to buyers’ agent.
105. I will provide Home Warranty information for availability at closing.
106. I will be there to represent you at closing.
107. Purchase and present closing gift.
108. I will change MLS status to Sold. Enter sale date, price, selling broker, and agent’s ID numbers, etc.
109. I will lose out listing in transaction management program.
Follow Up After Closing
110. I will answer questions about filing claims with Home Warranty company, if requested.
111. I will attempt to clarify and resolve any repair conflicts if buyer is dissatisfied.
112. I will respond to any follow-up calls and provide any additional information you need!
It is after the closing when I personally will be paid for all of these services that I have and will provide. Payment is provided from my broker. I am responsible for saving around 1/3 of my salary for taxes, as they are not taken out of commission. Any gifts or added incentives are provided out of my own pocket, not the brokerage. If the closing does not happen, I do not get paid one cent. This is why I do my very best to provide the best service possible to all of my clients. Your happiness and comfort mean everything to me.
This is not just business for me…it is a passion of mine to help people through the process of selling and buying homes. Also, I consider and treat my clients as friends and I am working for you, not for me. I hope this list provides a light on the services for which sellers pay when listing their homes with me. I am sure I’ve missed some of the things I do, but at least you have an inside glimpse on what I do behind the scenes. If you have any questions, always feel free to ask.