It's a slow Sunday morning. You've just brewed your Nespressoand popped open your laptop to check outthe latest home listings before you hit the roadfor a day of open houses.
You're DIYing this real estate thing, and you think you're doing pretty well—after all, any info you might need is at your fingertips online, right? That and your own sterling judgment.
Oh, dear home buyer (or seller!)—we know youcan do it on your own. But you really, really shouldn't. This is likely the biggest financial decision of your entire life, and youneed a Realtor® if you want to do it right. Here's why.
Want to checkthe MLS for a 4B/2B with an EIK and a W/D? Real estate has its own language, full of acronyms and semi-arcane jargon, and your Realtor is trained to speak that language fluently.
Plus, buying or selling a homeusually requires dozens of forms, reports, disclosures, and other technical documents. Realtors have the expertise to help you prepare a killer deal—whileavoiding delays or costly mistakes that can seriously mess you up.
2. They have turbochargedsearching power
The Internet is awesome. You can find almost anything—anything! And with online real estate listing sites such asyours truly, you can find up-to-date home listings on your own, any time you want. But guess what? Realtors have access to even more listings.Sometimes properties are available but not actively advertised. A Realtor can help you find those hidden gems.
Plus, a good local Realtor is going to know the search area way better than you ever could. Have your eye on a particular neighborhood, but it's just out of your price range? Your Realtor is equipped to know the ins and outs ofevery neighborhood, so shecan direct you toward a home in your price range that you may have overlooked.
3. They have bullish negotiating chops
Any time you buy or sell a home, you're going to encounter negotiations—and as today's housingmarket heats up, those negotiations are more likely than ever to get a little heated.
You can expect lots of competition, cutthroat tactics, all-cash offers, and bidding wars. Don't you want a savvy and professional negotiator on your side to seal the best deal for you?
And it's not just about how much money you end upspending or netting. A Realtor will help draw up a purchaseagreement that allows enough time for inspections, contingencies, and anything else that's crucial to your particular needs.
4. They're connectedto everyone
Realtors might not know everything, but they make it their Mission to know just about everyone who can possibly help in the process of buying or selling a home. Mortgage brokers, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, home stagers, interior designers—the list goes on—and they're all in your Realtor's network. Use them.
5. They adhere to a strict code of ethics
Not every real estate agent is a Realtor, who is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country.
What difference does it make? Realtorsare held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.
6. They'reyour sage parent/data analyst/therapist—all rolled into one
The thing about Realtors: They wear a lotof different hats. Sure, they're salespeople, but theyactually do a whole heck of a lot to earn their comMission. They're constantly driving around, checking out listings for you. They spend their own money on marketing your home (if you're selling). They're researching comps to make sure you're getting the best deal.
And, of course, they're working for you at nearly all hours of the day and night—whether you need more info on a home or just someone to talk toin orderto feel at ease with the offer you just put in. This is the biggest financial (and possibly emotional) decision of your life, and guiding you through it isn't a responsibility Realtors take lightly.
Rachel Stults is a senior editor at realtor.com, covering advice around all things real estate, home decor, renting, and moving. She is also realtor.com's video programming manager. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Always ahead of the highly competitive RGV real estate market, Marilyn Cortez is a Spanish speaking native of the Rio Grande Valley. Born and raised in Mission, Marilyn is committed to her clients, and is recognized as a Top Agent in the Greater McAllen Real Estate area, and within Keller Williams Realty. Since the start of her Real Estate career in 2007, she has sold over 40 million dollars of real estate. Known by her fellow real estate agents to be hardworking, honest, dedicated and motivated, Marilyn is knowledgeable in all areas of Real Estate and has built her business on results, with more than 70% of her clients being repeat clients.