THE MYTH: "It's all about the money!"
Real estate agents: They're money grubbing middlemen, doing what we could do on our own!
THE TRUTHS IN THE MYTH:
Middlemen: Real estate agents make their money solely through brokering real estate transactions that can be carried out legally between buyers and sellers with no intermediary.
States license real estate professionals for a reason, and we have one of the largest professional associations (with national, state and local chapters), founded upon an extensive Code of Ethics, for a reason: to serve, educate and protect the consumer.
Sure, you can try to sell your house by yourself (and you could probably even repair your transmission by yourself, with the right manuals...), thinking you will save a broker's commission, and sure, you can go make an offer on a home on your own, directly to a listing agent (the latter being a safer kettle of fish, as a rule of thumb), but there are a number of serious information gaps and potential pitfalls that professional real estate service will almost always eliminate.
From pricing wisdom to market exposure, to qualifying buyers and being protected against real estate related legal claims, there's a lot to know about the significant value of a highly qualified "middleman"! Stay tuned for the full breakdown in the next installment, and in the mean time, let me leave you with this teaser: