Why Use A REALTOR® When It's Time to Buy or Sell Your House

Dated: July 24 2020

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Why Use A Realtor?

According to the National Associationof Realtors (NAR), “A Realtor® is a licensed real estate salesperson who belongs to the National Association of Realtors®, the largest trade group in the country. Every real estate agent is not a Realtor®, but most are. If you're unsure, you can ask your agent if they're a licensed Realtor®. Realtors® are held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.”


Plainly put, a Realtor® is an experienced and educated professional who will work on your behalf and advocate for your interests. Most sellers have armed themselves with at least one of these licensed professionals so as a result, buyers will be at a distinct disadvantage with negotiations and understand the complex lingo in contracts. Here’s what you should consider if you are considering purchasing a home yourself without a Realtor:


  • You will not have access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) for your property search. The MLS is a centralized database of all available real estate in s specific area and is only accessible to licensed real estate professionals.

    • Other sites (Zillow, Trulia, etc.) can give you a sampling of what’s available, and some comparable properties but you’ll have to research whether asking prices are justified based on comparable home sales in the area on your own.

    • If you are in a “hot” real estate market where homes sell in less than 48 hrs. you will be at an immense disadvantage as most the buyers (83% on average in the U.S) do use a real estate agent and will be made aware of new homes listed on the market immediately after they are posted. Meanwhile you will have to wait for your publicly accessible site to update with the information which can take up to 48 hrs.


  • In addition to that, here’s what you’ll have to do yourself if you buy a house without a Realtor:

    • Dig up facts on a neighborhood, including ones that a seller might not disclose that could be important to you.

    • Negotiate an offer, including the price and other clauses and contingencies in the purchase agreement.

    • Navigate the home inspection, and negotiate repairs or credits with the seller.

    • Decipher paperwork that could be filled with complex jargon and terms you don’t understand.

  • Request and review seller disclosures. You might not know what to ask for or what sellers in your state are required to disclose.


How about sellers?
On average in the USA, homes sold by Realtors® get $230k compared to $180k for “for sale by owner”(FSBO) listings. If you have the right agent they will price your property to get the most money in the shortest time, a combination that can mean 10-30% more net profit. When you might save 2-3% on a listing commission you should take that into account. Many real estate investors specifically target FSBO sellers because they know that they will be able to take advantage of them and get themselves a better deal. 

If you, a friend of yours or a family member are considering a real estate purchase or sale please share this with them and feel free to reach out to me with any questions!

Charleston Area Homes for Sale:  Debbie Sonnycalf, Real Estate Agent with Southern Shores Real Estate Group Charleston.

Advocating for sellers and buyers with professional Real Estate Services.  Make an educated and informed decision before you buy or sell.  

For more information please feel free to contact me at Debbie Sonnycalf debbie.sonnycalf@southernshoresre.com or 



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Debbie Sonnycalf

Realtor, Debbie Sonnycalf specializes in the purchase and sale of residential property in the beautiful Lowcountry of South Carolina. Debbie grew up in a military family and spent much of her early li....

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