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11 Reasons Why You Need a Real Estate Agent

By Carol Birrell

Property prices in most Australian cities shot up recently, with Melbourne enjoying price rises of 12.6% and Sydney prices surging by 11.3%. There has been much talk of a property bubble looming, but figures for month-on-month growth indicate that the market has slowed down in the last three months. But, with mortgage rates well below the average thanks to a base rate of only 1.5%, interest in property remains high.

Whether you are buying or selling a property, a real estate agent is worth their weight in gold. If you are looking for your dream home, their job is to help you find it, but if you need to sell, they can find a buyer, negotiate a sale, and walk you through the complexities of selling a property.

Of course, the internet makes it nice and easy to buy or sell a property. But, even though you can create a property listing or peruse homes for sale online, a real estate agent can still be incredibly useful. However, in case you are not convinced, here are 11 reasons why you need to hire a real estate agent today.

​1. ​They Know the Local Market

Buying and selling property is a real estate agent’s bread and butter. They know the local market inside out and are usually a mine of useful information. Are you looking for a property close to transport links or would you prefer to live somewhere more remote? Ask your local agent for advice – if they don’t have the answer, nobody will!

​2. ​Price Guidance

It isn’t always easy to determine a sale price for a property. You can research similar listings online, but if you get it wrong, you won’t find a buyer or you will end up out of pocket.

Real estate agents deal with property listings every day, so they are very familiar with the local market. Unless your property is one of a kind, they should be able to advise you on what your property is worth and whether you can make any improvements to boost the sale price.

​3. ​Top Quality Property Listings

It isn’t easy to create a property listing. High-quality photographs are essential and these days, buyers expect to see 3D floor plans and panoramic videos of each room. Do you have the technical knowhow to pull together a compelling advert and list it online?

Most people don’t, which is why they hire a real estate agent to market their property. Real estate agents have a network of photographers, home stagers, and more to call upon. To them, it’s all part of the service, but to you, it’s a godsend.

​4. ​Accompanied Viewings

Selling a property is time-consuming. You need to be available to show people around the property, organise open days, and take numerous telephone calls, emails, and social media messages. Do you honestly have time to do all of that and work a full-time job? If like most people, the answer is a resounding “no”, maybe you need to hire a real estate agent. That way, you can sit back and relax while they do the hard work on your behalf.

​5. ​Weed Out the ​Timewasters

One of the annoying aspects of selling a property is that you have to deal with timewasters. There will always be people who make appointments to view, even though they have no intention of buying. They just like to be nosy and snoop around other people’s properties.

It is a real estate agent’s job to weed out the unsuitable people so you don’t have to spend a day cleaning the house for nothing.

​6. ​Negotiation

How good are your negotiation skills? Can you haggle over price like a pro? Some people are excellent at negotiating prices down, but for the rest of us, it’s a vaguely embarrassing process, especially if the seller doesn’t want to sell or is desperate for the money.

It is far better to use a real estate agent to negotiate the right price on your behalf. Let them speak to the vendor; you might not agree on a price, but it is more likely. Real estate agents can also be the go-between if you are selling. Tell the agent what your bottom line is and let them negotiate with the buyer.

​7. ​Property Advice

Real estate agents can offer plenty of advice on all things property related. Are you considering renovating a property prior to selling it? Or are you not sure whether replacing a dated kitchen is going to add value to your home? In both cases, it is worth speaking to an experienced real estate agent. They know the local market well and can give you considered advice so you don’t waste money unnecessarily.

​8. ​Tap into a Useful Network

Real estate agents don’t work in isolation. Most work with a range of other professionals, including mortgage advisors, property lawyers, conveyancers, surveyors, and more. You can use this professional network to your advantage when you buy or sell a property. Instead of wasting time looking for professionals, ask your real estate agent to recommend a suitable person. It will save you time and effort.

​9. ​They are Marketing Experts

Marketing a property isn’t as easy as it first appears. There are numerous channels available, including online property listing websites such as realestate.com.au and domain.com.au. You need to be a real estate agent to list a property on these prominent sites, so this is not something you can do alone. Furthermore, a real estate agent knows which channels are going to be best for your property, once again, saving you time and money.

10. A Hand-Holding Exercise

If this is your first home, you won’t have a clue about the process and what to expect. Unfortunately, when buying a property, you can’t afford to take your eye off the ball.

Hire an experienced real estate agent and let them guide you through the process. They can hold your hand every step of the way. It’s the same if you need to sell a property. Again, it can be a complex process with many hurdles to navigate along the way. Even if you are an experienced property investor, a real estate agent will watch your back and make sure you don’t drop the ball at an inopportune moment.

11. They Are Not Emotionally Attached to a Property

It is never easy to sell a property when there are memories attached to every square inch of wall and floor. Not surprisingly, owners are not always the best people to show potential buyers around or negotiate a sale.

Experienced real estate agents are not emotionally attached to the property. To them, it is a business transaction, pure and simple. Don’t let your emotions get in the way of a sale. Let your real estate agent handle everything; you know it makes sense.

Buying or selling property is complicated, so you need to hire the right real estate agent. Most agents are ethical, hard-working and well worth the money, but inevitably there are a few who sully the reputation of the majority.

Always ask for recommendations from friends, family, and colleagues before you hire a real estate agent. That way you won’t be disappointed with the service you receive.​

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