As a mortgage lender, CommunityAmerica mortgage officers frequently work with Realtors. They assist our members with both buying and selling homes. With so much information available online, many home sellers often wonder if a Realtor is worth it. After all, they could do it themselves and save the standard 5 percent to 6 percent cut. However, they have to decide if that is worth it.
We’ve seen success stories on both sides of the FSBO (for sale by owner) question in the Kansas City real estate market. Here are some things to consider before you commit to a FSBO scenario.
Do you have time at your disposal? What people pay a Realtor for isn’t just expertise – it’s legwork. Think back to the to the piles of paperwork, contracts and timelines involved when you purchased your home. Would you want to have to compile that yourself?
A realtor will assist by packaging the documents need. They will also assist with reviews and required signatures. This way, you are not burdened with this hassle during your busy day. Realtors also act as a liaison between entities such as the lender and title company. If time, convenience, accuracy and expertise are worth the percentage, you might be better off with a Realtor.
If you do not wish to use a Realtor, it’s advisable to hire a lawyer to manage the contracts. You’ll need to free yourself up to manage those responsibilities, including making arrangements for showings.
Is your Realtor willing to entertain an adjustment? When Realtors are assisting with both selling and buying processes, they will often consider a lower commission percentage. It’s always a good idea simply to ask, ideally when you are interviewing someone to help you with selling your home. A lower commission will get you more for your investment and may make a Realtor worth it in the end.
One of the biggest benefits to using a Realtor is access to the MLS system. Although sites like Zillow allow you to see homes for sale, they are often not updated in real time. This can hinder your ability to react in a hot market.
MLS is real time and only accessible to licensed Realtors. Sites such as HelpUSell and ZipRealty charge a flat listing fee. This is more affordable than Realtor commissions, but the rest of the process is up to you (if you choose that route).
The choice of using a Realtor or not is completely up to you. Just keep in mind what you may be sacrificing (or have to do yourself) if you opt to go it alone.
Check out all of our posts in our home buying and selling series!
For more advice on getting ready to buy or sell a home, see or visit
The blog and its opinions are expressly that of its author and does not convey the opinions or strategies of the Credit Union and should not be considered financial advice. CommunityAmerica’s Mortgage offers are subject to credit approval and terms may vary based on conditions.