Buying or selling a home can be a complex process full of paperwork, legal jargon, and unexpected turns. Thankfully, a real estate agent can guide you through the entire process. Real estate agents help arrange the purchase, sale, or renting of a property, be it an office building, house, or apartment. They can manage all aspects of the transaction to ensure that it is a legally binding one and that all parties involved are happy with the outcome. The agent’s specific role, however, varies depending on who they are representing in the sale.
On the Seller Side
Real estate agents working with sellers focus primarily on ensuring that their client’s home is perfectly positioned within the market. An agent will meet with the seller to understand their goals and reasons for selling the property, and conduct research on the local market. They will identify similar homes in the area that have sold recently to determine an asking price that is not too low for the seller, but not so high as to deter potential buyers.
After conducting research, the agent can create a listing for the house. This listing will include photos of the interior and exterior of the house, vital information (such as square footage and the number of bathrooms, and any special features, like a large backyard or proximity to schools. The listing should get potential buyers interested in the house and be posted on several websites to attract the maximum amount of attention.
Once the property is ready for showing, the real estate agent will help sellers prepare their home for open houses and be prepared to answer questions from potential buyers. When an offer is made on the property, the agent will assist in evaluating whether it represents a good one for the sellers and, if so, work to finalize the sale by conducting negotiations and filing the appropriate paperwork.
On the Buyer Side
When working with home buyers, real estate agents take on a slightly different role. They meet with buyers to determine the best homes for their needs, then research listings to find properties that match. Real estate agents often have access to listing sites that the general public does not, making them a valuable resource during the search for a new home and allowing them to find a wider range of homes to show their clients.
Once an agent has found suitable homes, they will arrange for private showings or inform their clients of open houses and give their clients a tour of the home. A real estate agent must know enough about the house to answer buyers’ questions and be prepared to conduct find a new property if the buyers decide that they want something different after seeing the home in person. Most buyers view several homes, going back to their favorites for a second look, before committing to making an offer.
When the buyers choose a house on which they would like to place an offer, a real estate agent will help them prepare an offer package and negotiate as necessary to close the sale. As when supporting sellers, real estate agents will also assist buyers with all paperwork, legal documents, and filings necessary to ensure that the sale is legally binding.
Why You Need a Real Estate Agent
While it is possible to buy or sell a home without the help of a real estate agent, the process can become needlessly difficult if you choose to go it alone. Agents are highly knowledgeable when it comes to the rules around buying and selling homes, helping buyers better understand the purchasing process and telling them what to expect at each stage so that they are fully prepared. They can also point out unnoticed features that buyers might find enticing or flaws that sellers should fix before showing the home.
Whether assisting buyers or sellers, real estate agents are also expert negotiators who can secure better contract terms that help their clients feel more comfortable with their purchase or sale. Agents typically have strong ties to the community, giving them inside knowledge about the best neighborhoods and allowing them to connect clients with service providers, such as mortgage lenders and home inspectors, that clients can trust to treat them fairly.
Hiring a Real Estate Agent
Speak with The Katie Zarpas Group for more information about the role of a real estate agent and to see if the team might be a good match for your needs. Zarpas has more than 10 years of experience in real estate herself, and has won numerous industry awards throughout her career in recognition of her expertise. She specializes in helping buyers and sellers of investment properties, new construction, vacation properties, country homes, and historic homes, among other properties throughout Virginia Beach and in surrounding coastal areas.