Working with a REALTOR will Increase Your Happiness

OK, so maybe the title is a little tongue in cheek.  But, if you’re looking to buy or sell a home in San Francisco (or anywhere for that matter), according to a new J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Home Buyer/Seller StudySM, the role a REALTOR plays in a transaction remains on of the most important factors in customer satisfaction. 

Which means that a customer that works with a REALTOR is likely to be a happy customer. 

While online tools remain popular among home buyers and sellers, the role of the REALTOR® remains one of the key factors of customer satisfaction, according to the new J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Home Buyer/Seller StudySM.

J.D. Power’s inaugural study measures customer satisfaction of home buyers and sellers with the nation’s largest real estate firms, determined by examining three factors for the home-buying experience: agent; office space/presentation; and services. Four factors are considered for measuring the overall home-selling experience: agent; marketing services; office space/presentation; and services.

Vast numbers of home buyers and sellers rely on the Internet to initiate the buying or selling process, according to the study, with 68 percent of buyers saying that they used the Internet to conduct their searches, and 61 percent of sellers reporting that they used a Web site listing to market their home. Yet, the study also found that, despite the growth in popularity of home-buying and -selling resources on the Internet, real estate agents play a key role in determining overall customer satisfaction with real estate companies.

“Although the Internet provides home buyers and sellers with the ability to perform some essential tasks, such as listing a home for sale or researching a neighborhood in which to purchase a home, it still does not replace the importance of a good real estate agent,” said Jim Howland, senior director of the real estate and construction practice at J.D. Power and Associates.

But what will a REALTOR do for YOU???

If you’re working with a good real estate agent, he/she will help provide you with the tools to be successful. 

If you’re buying a home your agent should:

  • Recommend a lender that will help you get the best interest rate and loan terms, as well as provide you with exceptional service.
  • Determine your needs and wants and learn about your taste.
  • Fully explain the buying process to you.
  • Show you homes based on the criteria you establish.
  • Grant you complete access to the MLS so that you have 100% of MLS data, and allow you to create saved searches and to save and track your favorite properties.
  • Walk you through the volumes of paperwork with clear and accurate explanations.
  • Provide you with statistical and comparable sales information so that you can make an informed choice on an offer price.
  • Draft the purchase agreement for you and present the offer to the seller and/or their agent highlighting your strengths as a buyer.
  • Negotiate price and terms of the purchase on your behalf.
  • Help direct you to dependable home inspectors, title & escrow companies, home insurance companies, moving companies and can even assist you in having the power and water turned on.
  • Be present during the closing process at the escrow office and will assist you in reviewing your closing papers for accuracy.
  • Celebrate you new purchase with a bottle of champagne!  (Maybe not a “must” but a definite “nice to have!”)
  • Continue as your real estate consultant and your resource for any home-related needs as long as you own your home.

If you’re selling a home your agent should:

  • Provide you with a comparative market analysis by reviewing comparable properties that have recently sold and are currently on the market.
  • Help you determine how much your home is worth, and develop a listing price strategy based on current market conditions.
  • Grant you complete access to the MLS so that you have 100% of MLS data, and allow you to keep your eye on the competition.
  • Provide you with an objective eye to make your property more attractive to buyers with the least cost to you. Luba can even help you secure a loan to fix-up your property for the sale.
  • Market your property through advertising, promotion, open houses and exposure to real estate professionals all over the City and beyond.
  • Walk you through the volumes of paperwork needed to prepare the property for sale with clear and accurate explanations.
  • Review offers and negotiate on your behalf.
  • Coordinate inspections, appraisals, escrow and closing.
  • Handle all of the details of the sales process and keep you informed of everything that goes on.
  • Celebrate with you at the close of your sale with a bottle of champagne! (Maybe not a “must” but a definite “nice to have!”)
  • Continue as your real estate consultant and your resource for any home-related needs as long as you need.

And remember, whether you’re buying or selling a home in SF, I’d love to help you and my advice is always free.  You can always contact me directly to see if I’m the best agent to make your San Francisco real estate transaction a happy one!

Luba