|Why Search for a Realtor, Anyway?
Finding Your Realtor by "Accident":
When someone decides it is time to sell their home, they
interview several Realtors from different companies to determine
which one is best for them. They want someone who will represent
them and someone they feel will do an effective job at marketing
their home. However, when someone decides to buy a home, they
usually end up with their Realtor through sheer accident. Why
donít homebuyers search for a Realtor the same way that
Instead, homebuyers usually end up with a Realtor as a result of
answering an advertisement. The advertisement will give a brief
summary of a home available for sale along with the price, but
it says nothing at all about the Realtor. The ad also does not
say whether the property backs to a busy street or if the "ocean
view" is available only by leaning out of the second story
window with a pair of binoculars.
Listing Agents vs. Selling Agents
You see, there are listing agents and selling agents. Listing
agents are the ones who "list" a home for sale on the Multiple
Listing Service, and they deal primarily with sellers. Selling
agents or "buyerís" agents do not usually list homes very many
homes for sale. They deal mostly with homebuyers. Buyerís agents
sell the homes that are placed in the MLS by the listing agents.
Most agents concentrate primarily on one side or the other. This
is not a "hard and fast" rule. There are also agents who split
their time equally between buyers and sellers. Often, these are
the very best Realtors. The fact of the matter is, if you are
buying a home who do you want on your side? A Realtor who deals
primarily with sellers? Or one who deals mostly with buyers?
If you call on an advertisement in a newspaper or one of those
home selling magazines, you are most likely calling the listing
agent. Listing agents place ads for several reasons. First, they
need to show the seller that they are doing something to sell
their home. Second, by showing how much they advertise, they can
also attract other individuals who are thinking of selling their
homes. They point to their ads as an example of what they will
do to market the house.
Why Agents Advertise - Is it What You Think?
What sellers donít realize is that a listing agentís main
marketing emphasis is directed toward other Realtors, not the
general public. Their main goal is to convince the selling
agents (buyer's agents) to find buyers and make offers. This is
a good thing because if you are selling a home, you want as many
Realtors as possible bringing buyers around to take a look. Most
of a listing agent's marketing efforts toward other Realtors are
invisible to the general public, but it is where an effective
listing agent does a home seller the most good.
One reason listing agents advertise homes in newspapers and
magazines is to show their clients that they are aggressively
marketing the property. When home sellers constantly see ads
from a particular Realtor, they are inclined to want to list
with that Realtor. So even though the ads look like they are
directed toward home buyers, they often have another purpose. To
attract home sellers.
Selling agents (buyer's agents) do advertise homes for sale in
order to attract buyers. However, they don't really expect you
to actually purchase the home you originally call on. They would
be happy if you do, but it happens so rarely that they do not
When you call on a real estate ad, you often schedule an
appointment to go look at the advertised home. While you are out
looking at that home, you will probably want to look at a few
others, too. Eventually, you and the Realtor will zero in on
what you need and like in the proper price range and you will
make an offer.
That is one way of finding your Realtor by accident.