Why Baton Rouge Home Sellers Should Use Experienced Full-Time Agents
NOTE: This Article Was Written As An Advice Column For Potential Baton Rouge Home Sellers from a Home Appraiser of 21 Years Experience and Was Not Written For Greater Baton Rouge REALTORS®. No particular Broker or Agent are recommended and the photo on the right shows Pending Listing Signs from 3 different GBR Real Estate Brokerages.
There was an article posted on Active Rain this past week entitled,
"Can We Stop Using The Term "Full Time Real Estate Agent?"
The author's point was that we don't call of think of CPAs, Attorneys, Bankers or Developers as and I quote:
- Full-time CPA
- Full-time attorney
- Full-time banker
- Full-time developer
While This Sounds Interesting, I disagreed with the points made BECAUSE of the vast size of the Fee or REALTOR(S)® commission. Do you pay your CPA $11,250 to $13,250 yearly to do your taxes? Absolutely NOT! Veteran listing agents worth $25K per home?
Am I saying RE Agents don't earn their commissions? Absolutely NOT! The article above, Veteran Listings Agents...." answers this question. I believe you will be best served by those "aggressive" professional Agents in the top 20% of Greater Baton Rouge Home Sales.
And, Scott Fogleman added this wisdom, "Bill-you make a great case. Sellers need to know how the qualifications of their agent. Also, sometimes it not the amount of years... in the amount of sales within those years..."
The Average and Median Sales Prices in Baton Rouge in 2013 has been $220,900 and $187,500 and assuming you'll pay 6%, that Agent Commission could be $13,254 or $11,250. A $300,000 home selling commission would be $18,000 and $500,000 would be $30,000. My point is not at all that Agents don't deserve their commission, but that these are the potential fee(s) you'll pay to hire a local Agent to sell your home, depending on the commission structure and if you're going to pay this commission, hire the most experienced Full-Time Agent with the best sales performance you can find.
On the platforms where I write and offer advice and tips to locals, I strongly urge potential sellers and buyers to work with Full-Time Experienced Agents because.....they're going to pay the same 6% commission. If they can hire an Agent with 5 to 40 years experience and / or a go getter Agent in the Top 25 Percent of sales for their Brokerage versus a newbie Part-Time Agent with only 1.5 years experience, I urge them to opt for more experience. THE POINT IS: HIRE A FULL TIME AGENT AGENT, NOT A PART-TIME AGENT.
There are some younger Agents entering the business with better and more current social media and marketing skills doing well in local home sales. IF there's a way to view a local Agents results, hire them based on their results, not just because they're the first Agent you found online in a Google Search. Most certainly there are exceptions.
WHAT SHOULD A BATON ROUGE LISTING AGENT DO FOR YOU AT A MINIMUM?
Physically Measure Your Home For Accuracy AND Market Your Home With "PRO PHOTOS"!
I strongly recommend home buyers and sellers hire Agents that actually will physically measure your home for accuracy - that will actually show up to your home not only dressed professionally with a fancy iPad listing presentation, but that will show up with the measuring tape or laser measurer they will use to walk through your bushes and measure your home! And/or hire a local real estate professional that can measure your home. See my commentary below. AND, will market your home with Professional Photos, which only cost the Agent between $150 to maybe $250 depending on the size of the home. When the average selling commission in Baton Rouge is between $11,500 to $13,500, certainly $150 to $250 for pro photos isn't a burden. Expect nothing less! Photo Credit is for http://fotosold.com/
My comment reply to this article is stated below.
Your point touched on a sensitive nerve of mine. NO, we absolutely should NOT stop using the term "Full-Time Real Estate Agent"!
The Top Full-Time Experienced Agents in Baton Rouge Real Estate sell 75% to 80% of all homes....and there's a good reason for that. Experience and Full-Time Matters!
I've been a Full-Time Home Appraiser now for 21 years, have worked with experienced and inexperienced (Part-Time) Agents and review up to 70 individual MLS Listings per working day (Solds and Listings) from experienced and inexperienced Agents. And, here's what I know to be true:
1.) When calling a Duty Agent to verify details on a listing because I couldn't get in touch with a Part-Time Agent, I've heard comments similar to that's not correct on the listing and I would trust the data in MLS History on that home versus the current listing.
2. ) Part-Time Agents are those that are more likely to pull out their smart phone and take lousy "vertical photos" (instead of correct horizontal positioned photos) where a potential buyer nor Appraiser when it's a sold comp can't see the entire home. These are the same photo(s) that populate Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.com. That's NOT offering professional representation of a home for the seller. In Baton Rouge Real Estate, the median sales price is $229,900 and at 6% Commission, that's $13,794 paid to professionally market a home and sellers deserve better! As a market standard, Local Full-Time Professional Agents pay the $150 to $200 for professional photos for each of their listings and have experienced their best year in real estate in 2013.
3.) Part-Time Agents are more likely to use fewer photos for the MLS Listing when they can use up to 25 to 30 photos.
4. ) Part-Time Agents are far less likely to actually measure the home, know how to measure the home based on national ANSI standards, and/or report an accurate living area. The more you perform a task, the better you become at that task. That's right, I just used the words "actually measure a home for the listing". The Greater Baton Rouge Association of REALTORS actually has a home measuring class taught by an Appraiser that Agents and Appraisers must take in order to gain access to our MLS. Whether it's a requirement in your state or MLS, it is in Baton Rouge. And, for $13,794 commission, YES, the seller deserves to have their home professionally measured based on national ANSI standards! If the living area size isn't accurate and off by 200sf at an average sales price for a market of $130/sf, then the initial listing price is a disservice to the seller, especially if the appraisal comes in "low" because the Agent failed to accurately state correct living area size up front on the listing.
5.) Part-Time Agents are much less likely to comply with GBRMLS Rules in filling out the MLS Listing Sheet 100% completely, thus potentially violating MLS Rules. I report mls sheet errors almost daily, these are reported and extra time has to be taken to correct what should have been correct and 100% at the beginning of submission.
6.) Part-Time Agents are much less likely to fill out the MLS Listing with the details needed to fully understand the property. Thankfully, my MLS History goes back to 1997 and I can take a listing in history and compare to a newer current listing by a Part-Time Agent and see the details in the new listing are far less than in the old listing.
On the platforms where I write and offer advice and tips to locals, I strongly urge potential sellers and buyers to work with Full-Time Experienced Agents because.....they're going to pay the same 6% commission. If they can hire an Agent with 15 to 35 years experience or a newbie Part-Time Agent with only 1.5 years experience, I urge them to opt for more experience.