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New Study: Home Sellers Still Depend on Real Estate Agents Despite Disruptions New Study: Home Sellers Still Depend on Real Estate Agents Despite Disruptions

New Study: Home Sellers Still Depend on Real Estate Agents Despite Disruptions

Written By: Luke Babich
Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Homeowners donrsquo;t realize how much it costs to sell a home, with 45 not expecting to pay the buyerrsquo;s commission. Those who plan to sell for sale by owner FSBO arenrsquo;t ready to sell by themselves; they arenrsquo;t comfortable negotiating without an agent 53.

Most home sellers, even those who do try to sell by themselves, still need a real estate agent. 62 of respondents indicated theyrsquo;re uncomfortable filling out and completing the necessary paperwork by themselves.

How Do Commission Fees Work, Anyway?

While there were over six million homes sold in 2017, many Americans just donrsquo;t understand how real estate commissions work. The home selling process is complicated and filled with minor fees and costs.

Of the 1,000 home sellers surveyed, almost half of the cohort thought the home buyer pays their own commission, while in reality, the home seller pays commission fees in almost all transactions.

Most homeowners donrsquo;t understand all the costs involved in selling a home, and home sellers were also confused about the average commission fee itself. Only 35 of home sellers know that the total commission fee is about 6 of the homersquo;s final price.

The study also found that 34 of respondents thought realtor fees are costly and unfair to sellers, but 46 of respondents felt that realtor fees are costly and fair, and 19 felt realtor fees are reasonable and fair.

The bottomline: When starting a >

Even FSBO Sellers Need a Realtor

While new real estate services like flat-fee MLS services and AI-driven home listing sites are disrupting the industry, therersquo;s nothing that can quite replace a traditional real estate agent. Even as technology improves, there are important parts of the home-selling process that most people donrsquo;t trust to themselves.

Most buyers donrsquo;t feel comfortable negotiating on their own, and even among sellers listing by themselves, almost half are uncomfortable negotiating.

Furthermore, 62 of all home sellers and 46 of FBSO sellers said they wouldnrsquo;t be comfortable obtaining and executing all necessary real estate paperwork when selling their home. What this data indicates is many sellers arenrsquo;t prepared to deal with the minutiae of home selling.

Many home sellers are unaware of how complicated the process can be and how much work goes into it. In 2017, only 7 of home sales nbsp;were >

Whatrsquo;s more, that decision usually pays off: according to recent data from the National Association of Realtors, the average FSBO home sold for 200,000, compared to 265,000 for agent-assisted sales.

Traditional Realtors in 2019

While technological advances are creeping up on real estate agents, including the specter of AI which 37 of respondents thought could outperform Realtors, theyrsquo;re still an integral part of the home selling process.

Cleverrsquo;s study indicates the importance of working with real estate agents, as many home sellers are unaware of the true challenges of selling their homes. With a quality agent who explains the process in detail, home sellers will be more prepared to sell their homes in the future.


Luke Babich is Co-Founder and CSO ofnbsp;Clever Real Estate. Luke is also an active real estate investor with 22 units in St. Louis, and a licensed Real Estate Agent in the State of Missouri.

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