Is it Necessary to Hire a REALTOR® in Calgary, AlbertaIt isn’t absolutely necessary to hire a REALTOR®, but people should do it for their own protection. Hiring a REALTOR® is like hiring any other professional such as a doctor, a dentist, or a lawyer. For good reason, I wouldn’t pull my own tooth and I wouldn’t represent myself in court, so I hire the most qualified and experienced professionals to do those things for me. In real estate, there is a lot of inside industry information and laws that people have to know in order to protect themselves. Because of this, it’s important to hire a REALTOR® with the most experience, and proven results, to guide you through the process. For instance, when hiring a REALTOR® on the buyer’s side, you want to make sure that the REALTOR® not only has the experience to deal with the process in its entirety, but can also explain it to you. They should also know how to evaluate any offers that hit the table so they can properly protect you. An Example of the Necessity of Due Diligence As an example, say that on the buyer’s side, someone is looking at buying a home with a suite, and the listing REALTOR® has it advertised as a legal suite. In this case, the buyer may need to have income out of that suite in order for them to have the necessary income to cover their mortgage payments. Often offers are written on the weekend, and the more common conditions would be subject to a home inspection and subject to financing. But in the case of a legal suite, due diligence with the city of Calgary is required on suite information. Without that, it could be discovered after the fact that things weren’t done legally, and they could be shut down by the city, which of course would result in big trouble for the buyer. The Importance of Hiring a REALTOR® with Proven Results This is one reason why it’s important to hire a REALTOR® with proven results. As an example, I’m consistently in the top 1% for residential listings sold on an annual basis through the Calgary Real Estate Board. So I have experience with negotiation, and the skills to sense when an offer is coming in on one of my listings from the other REALTOR®. I can recognize their negotiating tact as soon as they submit that offer. Then I can give that advice to my client and say, “This is where I feel they’re going with this and this is what we want to do in turn.” That’s the sort of advice people must have in order to be successful. On top of that, you want to make sure that the REALTOR® has a great marketing plan on the selling side. In addition to traditional forms of marketing, we now also focus on promoting our listings online using as much social media as possible. We also deal with a network of contacts through the real estate community and the public. Experience is Everything We’ve been doing this for over 30 years and I’ve been in business as a licensed REALTOR® in Calgary , this level of experience is everything when it comes to what you want in a REALTOR®. I wouldn’t want to hire a doctor for a procedure that he’s good at 25% of the time. I’d move along and use somebody else. When hiring any professional, including a REALTOR®, experience is everything; the REALTOR® you hire should have a proven record of success and should also be able to provide references. You Get What You Pay For Sometimes people attempt to save money, so they hire a REALTOR® with less experience. While they may save a couple thousand dollars on commissions, it could ultimately cost them thousands of dollars because the negotiation wasn’t covered properly. At the end of the day, you get what you pay for. Here’s a true story to illustrate this point. I had a client that in a rising market sold his property on his own. Everything looked good up front, but the seller didn’t know how to protect himself, and he didn’t get enough of a deposit. The possession was 60 days down the road, and when it came time for the people to move in, they bailed on the deal and left the seller high and dry. To make matters worse, the seller had already purchased another home which he needed to close on, but due to the buyer of his home bailing, he didn’t have the money needed to do so. This put him in a really bad situation because the seller of the home he purchased ended up coming after him for the closing. As a result, there was a chain reaction, where one person couldn’t close, and then the next person couldn’t close, and everything was delayed. He came to me at that point and I actually had to get out there and list his home the next day because the buyer had completely bailed and nobody could find him. All of this could have been avoided had he hired an experienced REALTOR® to begin with because an experienced REALTOR® would have known what to do to protect his best interests. Beware of REALTORS® who advertise they have lots of industry experience. This could be misleading. They might be someone who worked in the office for a builder or worked in a trade and have never sold a house, or very few. They have been only been a licensed REALTOR® for say 6 months, but advertise 20 years industry experience. Ask these questions:
- Are you a full-time REALTOR®?
- How long have you been a Licensed REALTOR® in Calgary?
- Do you have recent references?
- How many homes did you sell last year?