There was a time when I once thought you could choose a real estate agent based on her commission rate, and that a cheaper agent was better, but I was still sucking my thumb at that age. When I grew up, got older, more experienced and hopefully wiser, I know today that it is not true and, in fact, that kind of wrong thinking can be a detriment to a seller.
I also prove it every single day in Sacramento real estate. I'm a top listing agent.
This last week I noticed a home in Curtis Park on the market at a ridiculously low price, a home that I have sold several times and am intimately familiar with. In fact, my team member represented the buyer who last purchased that home VA. Nobody else would work the guy because VA buyers are notoriously difficult to place, especially in seller's markets, which has been our climate in Sacramento for a long time. Generally, VA buyers are very loyal to their agents.
With the tables turned, though, when it came time to sell, the buyers dumped us. They told my team member they knew we are full service, but they found a discount company that would list the home for 1.5% less. So they felt it was a no brainer to choose that company and they never even called us to hear our side. Obviously, they did not read the recent reviews on Zillow where sellers said they had originally hired that particular discount company but when the agent could not perform, they hired me and made a lot more money.
I predict those sellers who chose a cheap agent are not gonna make it out of the inspections period intact. That 1.5% will fly out the window, and will probably double or triple. And that doesn't begin to count the profit they might lose on the front end.
What bothers me about this situation is not so much that the sellers did not choose us. Far from it. What bothers me is that with limited inventory, that particular sale by a discount agent will become a comp. And that comparable sale -- with its concessions a record accessible by appraisers -- could very well affect the appraisals of my new upcoming listings, both of which are high end. That's the problem.
You can read more about a home that closed yesterday with sellers who chose wisely in my personal blog today at this link: How a Sacramento Realtor Earns that Full Service Commission.
Certified HAFA Specialist
Sacramento Real Estate Listings
Elizabeth Weintraub is an author, home buying expert for About.com, a Land Park resident, and a veteran real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown and East Sacramento, as well as tract homes in Elk Grove, Natomas, Roseville and Lincoln. Weintraub is also a Sacramento Short Sale agent who lists and successfully sells short sales throughout the four-county Sacramento area with an emphasis on Elk Grove. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put 40 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at Lyon Real Estate. BRE License # 00697006.
The Short Sale Savior, by Elizabeth Weintraub, available with free shipping.
Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of Lyon Real Estate. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice; it could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to elizabethweintraub.com.