“For sale by owner” or a reduced commission brokerage is often advertised as a great way to save money when you sell your home – but is it the best move when dealing with one of life’s biggest transactions? 


We’re here to shed some light on why a professionally qualified agent will prove their worth ten times over. 

Buyers’ agents may be reluctant to show your property to their clients when they know there isn’t a professional agent on the other end of the deal. Buying or selling without an agent includes many risks and hassles that can be very intimidating.  On top of that – some agents will not show a private or reduced commission listing as they stand to have an easier, more profitable transaction by showing professionally listed, full commission properties instead.

It’s harder to keep your emotions out of the sale. Having an agent keeps you removed from making mistakes such as overpricing or becoming offended with low offers.

It’s not your full-time job. Being a licensed Realtor comes with thorough industry training and on-going education to remain on top of the newest market information.  Training aside – can you also accommodate showings, emails, phone calls and constant marketing at all hours of the day? Having an agent also sets you up with a lockbox so that your home can be shown even when you aren’t available.

Agents have a larger network than you do. It’s unlikely that you have an existing base of interested buyers, relationships with agents and brokerages and an extensive marketing network including professional photographers.  Agents do and will put it to work for you immediately.

You subject yourself to needless showings. It’s exhausting to put your life on hold and entertain showings at the drop of a hat – particularly when it might just be a curious neighbor or a dreamer who has no intention of actually purchasing your home.  It’s also awkward for buyers to have the seller present when viewing – most buyers will rush through homes with seller’s present as they find it uncomfortable to question or criticize without fear of reproach.

Negotiating the sale is tricky and awkward.  Even for someone with sales experience, negotiating to buy or sell a home requires thorough market knowledge and an understanding of the legalities involved.  Not working with a qualified agent can put you at risk of being sued.

Agents are expert problem-solvers. Consider if an inspection shows termites, a leak in the roof or asbestos – do you have a network of trade’s professionals that you can rely on quickly to prevent your buyer from running for the hills?

Having incomplete information can hurt your chances of selling. Most local houses listed with agents are sold within the first 5 days on market – often with multiple offers resulting in a bidding war.  How will you price yours according to the current conditions in order to compete? Great agents provide clients with statistical market information specific to your neighbourhood and provide the best marketing plan to get your house sold.  Private sales and reduced commission agencies rarely receive multiple offers or bidding wars – which can result in the seller getting less value for their home than they would have by listing with a full-commission agent.

Selling your home will likely be one of the biggest transactions of your life. You can try to do it alone or with a lower-commission brokerage to save money, but you will notice the disadvantages of not using a fully qualified agent. Agents can get broader exposure for your property, help you negotiate a better deal, dedicate more time to your sale and help keep your emotions from sabotaging the sale. An agent brings expertise, which few home sellers have, to a complex transaction with many financial and legal pitfalls. 

For reference and more great information – read the full article by Amy Fontinelle at Investopedia