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Frequently Asked Questions by Sellers

Seller Resources

Why Pay MORE for the SAME – or better – listing services?

Use DISCOUNT-REALTOR® to sell your home, and keep more of YOUR equity in YOUR pocket!

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Seller Representation FAQs

  1. Tell me more about your home selling services.
  2. How do you work with other REALTORS®?
  3. What do you mean when you say you can list homes for as low as 4% – sometimes less?
  4. How much commission should I offer to agents who represent buyers?
  5. How will you handle the showings of my home?
  6. What does DISCOUNT-REALTOR’S® yard sign look like?
  7. How important is it to put a “For Sale” sign in my yard?
  8. What type of listing flyers do you provide?
  9. I heard that some agents will not show a home if the commission offered to buyer agents is lower than what some agents have received in the past. Is that true?
  10. What is a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA)?
  11. Should I list my home for a higher price to leave room for negotiation?
  12. What is an electronic lockbox?

If you have other questions, or would like additional clarification, please contact us. We will be happy to answer any questions you have.

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Tell me more about your home listing/selling services.

To sum it up, we offer the same full-service listing/selling services as other real estate brokers for listing fees as low as 4% – and sometimes even less!

Our listing services include:

  • Using proven best practices to help increase profitability and buyer demand and reduce time on market!
  • An in-person walk-through of your home that includes providing you with staging and showing advice to help maximize your home’s appeal and perceived value to buyers!
  • Researching other homes that have sold in your area!
  • Researching homes that are currently for sale in your area!
  • Preparing and providing you with a Competitive Market Analysis with detailed information about comparable homes and strategies to help you price your home to sell quickly for top dollar!
  • Taking professional pictures of your home – inside and out!
  • Preparing and providing you with professionally designed, feature-and-photo-packed color listing flyers with room-by-room selling features that are second-to-none and focused on selling the home and highlighting its features – not flyers that are focused on selling the real estate broker!
  • Making a premium, interactive floor plan of your home available online to other REALTORS® and prospective buyers!
  • Placing a professional, three-color For Sale sign in your yard with descriptive riders and a brochure box to capture buyers’ interest!
  • Using REALTORS’® keyboxes so our listings can be shown by any other Peoria-area REALTOR®!
  • Listing your home on the following popular home listing services:
    • Peoria Area Association of REALTORS’® Multiple Listing Service
    • All cooperating brokers’ web sites
    • REALTOR.com – as an enhanced “showcase listing” to help your home stand out
    • All cooperating nationally syndicated real estate web sites like Zillow, Trulia, Yahoo, and many more!
  • Assisting you with showing your home!
  • Providing you with showing feedback!
  • Helping you with contract negotiations!
  • Helping you prepare and complete sales contracts!
  • Helping you finalize all contractual details!
  • Helping you with inspection-related issues!
  • Assisting you with locating contractors, movers, etc.!
  • Helping you with closing-related issues!
  • And more!

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How do you work with other REALTORS®?

As fellow cooperating members of the National Association of REALTORS®, other local REALTORS® can show and sell the home you list with us to their buyers just like we can show and sell the homes they list to our buyers!

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What do you mean when you say you can list homes for as low as 4% – and sometimes less?

Unlike other real estate agents and brokers who routinely charge sellers 6-7% for helping them sell their homes, regardless of the home’s selling price and even if it takes agents a very short time to sell their homes, we provide sellers with WIN-WIN, consumer-friendly, full-service home selling services for listing fees as low as 4% – and sometimes even less!

In general, the easier and faster it is to work with you and other agents to sell your home, the lower the overall listing fee.

And, if you sell and buy a home with a DISCOUNT-REALTOR® broker, we can offer you up to a 1% rebate of the sales price of the home you purchase back to you at closing, which can further reduce your net listing fee, after buyer rebate!

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How much commission should I offer to agents who represent buyers?

The commission you offer to other Buyer Agents is negotiable, but we require that it be competitive. Naturally, you want to offer enough commission to attract agents without needlessly giving away too much of your equity. We want the same thing for you.

As a general rule, a commission offering in the range of 2.0% to 3.5% of the final sales price is usually reasonable. Ultimately, however, the demand for your home compared to similar homes in your area, the attractiveness of your home’s location, price, condition, commission offered, and other Buyer Agent commissions being offered in your area, determine how competitive your commission offering should be.

One of our brokers will be happy to discuss a commission offering to Buyer Agents that is appropriate for your property.

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How will you handle the showings of my home?

When your listing begins, we will discuss and document the most appropriate showing instructions for your home with you (i.e. appointment required, one-hour notice, security codes, pet instructions, etc.). We will then hang a REALTOR®-approved electronic lockbox on your front door that stores a spare key to your home.

When other REALTORS® in the Peoria area want to show your home, we communicate your showing instructions to them. This way, you don’t have to be home during showings!

When prospective buyers want more information about your home, we typically route their inquires to the DISCOUNT-REALTOR® broker who listed your property. Your DISCOUNT-REALTOR® broker will then answer prospective buyers’ basic questions about your property. If the prospective buyer is interested in seeing your property, your DISCOUNT-REALTOR® broker will follow the showing instructions you provided to us at the time the listing was taken to arrange a mutually convenient time to show your property.

Any listing inquiry calls we get from photographers, inspectors, appraisers, contractors, etc. will be handled in a similar manner.

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What does DISCOUNT-REALTOR’S® yard sign look like?

We have worked with the #1 real estate yard sign company in America to create what we think is the most attractive, effective and flexible yard sign on the market!

Notice that the property description inserts can be selected especially for your home! We also attach a weather-resistant brochure box to the sign for storing listing information flyers with details about your property!

DISCOUNT-REALTOR Peoria Yard Sign

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How important is it to put a For Sale sign in my yard?

It is VERY important! Statistics show that approximately ONE-THIRD of homes are sold as a result of somebody seeing a REALTOR’S® yard sign! We have invested a lot of time and money into our yard signs to ensure they are very attractive and effective!

If you have a very good reason why you cannot place a yard sign in the yard (i.e. homeowner’s association rule, privacy issues, etc.), let us know and we will take that under consideration.

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What type of listing flyers do you provide?

One of the most important, but oftentimes overlooked, advertising mediums is the listing flyer. Our listing flyer is professionally-designed and and second-to-none, organized to display as many photos and room-by-room selling features as possible. Why? As a general rule, the more property features that are listed on a listing flyer, the easier it is to justify a higher sales price and compare favorably to other homes!

Our full-service home selling service includes preparing and providing you with an initial set of professionally designed color listing flyers that are intended to be displayed in the yard sign brochure box and inside your home. We also provide you with an electronic copy for printing additional listing flyers and/or distribute them to others.

Unlike flyers of many other area real estate brokers, our listing flyers are focused on selling your home and highlighting its features – not on selling the real estate broker!

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I heard that some agents will not show a home if the commission offered to buyer agents is lower than what some agents have received in the past. Is that true?

If the commission offered to other REALTORS® provides enough of an incentive for the home’s asking price, location, showing condition, and is competitive with the market, our experience is that other REALTORS® absolutely will show the property. Why? Because attractive homes like that do not stay on the market long! If some REALTORS® don’t show a home, others will!

Since DISCOUNT-REALTOR® was founded in 1999, many sellers have told us that one or more other REALTORS® told them that other REALTORS® in their market (oftentimes reportedly the top agent(s) in their market) would not show their property if the buyer agent commission advertised was lower than what they had received in the past.

We would hope that, in today’s world, where buyers do a lot of home searching themselves, all REALTORS® would abide by the National Association of REALTORS’® Code of Ethics to put their clients’ interests above their own. Fortunately, we have found that, when an attractive home is in a good location, shows well, is priced right, is marketed effectively, and a competitive buyer agent commission is offered, the demand is so great for these types of listings that the agents who reportedly “would not show” our listings were oftentimes the first agents to show our listings! The good news is that, if one REALTOR® does not show a property, many other REALTORS® – including the listing REALTOR®will gladly show a property to ready, willing and able buyers!

To help ensure the homes we list are marketed properly to other REALTORS®, we work closely with our sellers to ensure an appropriate commission is being offered to other REALTORS®.

One of our full-service brokers will be happy to provide you with more information regarding a buyer agent commission that is appropriate for your property.

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What is a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA)?

A Competitive Market Analysis is a technique used by real estate agents and licensed appraisers to estimate market value based on comparable (similar) properties that have recently sold, are currently listed for sale, and those that failed to sell.

This technique works particularly well when a number of homes in your neighborhood that are substantially similar to yours in size (lot size and interior square footage), configuration (number of bedrooms, baths, garage spaces, swimming pool, etc.) and construction (upgrades) have sold within the past six months.

Armed with the sold prices per square foot of the comparable homes, any adjustments that may be appropriate to the subject property (i.e. square footage, upgrades, etc.) are then factored in, and an estimated sales price (usually expressed as an estimated low and high sales price range) is produced.

Note: An agent-generated Competitive Market Analysis should NOT be substituted for the advice of a licensed appraiser.

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Should I list my home for a higher price to leave room for negotiation?

No! To sell your home quickly and for top dollar, you should start with the RIGHT sales price — at fair market value!

Buyers’ interest is highest at the beginning of the listing and decreases the longer the listing continues. During the first week that a home is listed, it receives nearly 4 times more web traffic than it will a month later!

Pricing your home above the correct sales price could:

  • Dramatically limit your potential buyers.
    • Buyers may not see your home in their search criteria if the price is inflated.
    • Even if your home does appear in their search, buyers may not bother looking at your home if it is overpriced.
    • Even if a buyer sees your home, they may not take the time to make an offer on an overpriced home.
    • Qualified buyers do not want to waste their time and energy pursuing unrealistically priced homes.
  • Net you less money for your home. After your home has been on the market a while, buyers:
    • Wonder what is wrong with it – why it hasn’t sold
    • Negotiate harder to pay a lower price
  • Make other nearby homes seem like a better deal than yours.
  • Cause appraisal problems.
    • Most buyers get loans to buy a home.
    • Even if a buyer makes an offer on an overpriced home, their lender won’t allow them to purchase the home if it does not appraise for the purchase price.
    • Or, you will need to find a buyer who falls deeply in love with the home and is willing to pay cash for it — at your overpriced value!

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    What is an electronic lockbox?

    An electronic lockbox is a box that typically hangs on your front door knob and holds a spare key to your home. Access to the box is electronically controlled to limit access to only those people who possess an active electronic keycard. It is also usually programmed to only allow access to the box during certain times of day. Typically, the local Board of REALTORS® is the body that grants and monitors access and use of the electronic keycards.

    In addition to storing a spare key to your home, the lockbox also records the entry date, time, and ID of the keycard that entered your home, which is handy for security reasons.

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