5 Hidden Costs of Working With Atlanta Real Estate Agent

5 Hidden Costs of Working With A Real Estate Agent

Selling your house fast in Atlanta? Why work with us instead of hiring a real estate agent?

We know that for consumers like us, we can easily access information about prices for most major consumer services that we need. Like we expect them to be, a larger number of service companies disclose their prices online and will willingly supply pricing information. Even funeral homes, which often seek to hide their prices, make available a price list of services that are required by the Federal Trade Commission. That is not the case with real estate commissions and service of Atlanta real estate agent.

At first, when you decide to sell your house, you instinctively seek a real estate agent you can work with. However, resorting to such instinct also means that you will be paying additional expenses that may not be fully apparent at the time your property is listed. 

Here are five (5) hidden costs and expenses of working with Atlanta real estate agent or any real estate agency in Atlanta. 

Curb Appeal and Improvements

The expenses for curb appeal and improvements are the first hidden cost in working with a real estate agent. Improving the curb appeal of the property is the first thing to be suggested by real estate agents once you hire them. A fresh coat of paint, any repairs, updates, minor renovations, and landscaping all adds up into a hefty bill of visual improvements whether your property is sold faster or not.

Staging Fees

The second hidden cost of working with a Atlanta real estate agent is staging fees. An unfurnished property does not leave that much of an impression to prospective buyers as such, the real estate agent may suggest property staging. With property staging, the potential buyer can imagine themselves living or occupying this property and may lead to the house being sold sooner. However, the catch is that when the realtor is not experienced enough or does not have time to stage properties themselves, they will often suggest a professional interior design service to come to stage the house for you. In addition, you will often have to rent or even purchase the furniture and decor needed for the property staging. Usually, the more expensive the property, the more likely you will be encouraged to have it staged.  

According to Home Guide, the cost of home staging can start at $500 and go as high as $5,500 with most spending between $1,600 and $2,400 per month. Prices will vary depending on the level of service you require if your home is vacant, and how many rooms that need staging. Homeowners can expect to pay between $200 and $600 for the initial design consultation, and a per-room cost of $500 to $600 per month for décor rental. 

Property Inspections or Surveys

Property inspection or survey is an extra perk in the listing used by many real estate agents like to entice potential buyers. In cases of properties that do not have major issues or property line encroachments, recent property inspection, or survey can be wielded as a great selling tool as more decent offers will be submitted by buyers. Property inspection or survey can be likely recommended by a real estate agent and it will cost you. 

According to Home Advisor, the average home inspection costs around $315, with condos and small homes under 1,000 sq ft. costing as little as $200. Larger homes over 2,000 sq ft. will run $400 or more. Radon or mold testing will cost extra, but will typically cost less if you purchase them with a home inspection.

Photography Fees

Paying for photography fees is something that might have slipped your mind when working with a real estate agent. Your first meeting with any real estate agent will probably involve a conversation about adding (posting) high-quality photos to your listing after doing the improvements and property staging. Usually, their trusted and preferred photographer for the job is going to be recommended by them. As a result, hiring a professional photographer to take pictures of your property costs more than what you expect. With today’s technology and ongoing pandemic, a virtual tour of your property is going to be a necessity, especially when it is not ideal to be around more people than necessary these days. If not, photographers would still conduct wide-angle shots of all of the rooms. 

According to Fix The Photo, the average income real estate photographer is $200 for images at daytime and $250 at twilight. Common real estate photography pay is $190 from buildings less than 3000 square feet, $230 – from more than 3000 square feet. Common real estate photography pricing list starts from $500 per single list.

Real Estate Commission

Now, let’s talk about the fifth hidden cost in working with a real estate agent: their commission. Did you know that real estate listing agents typically collect five to six percent commissions on the sale price of the homes they help sell, then share these commissions with any involved buyer brokers? 

These commissions – usually $15,000 to $18,000 on the sale of a $300,000 home – represent one of the most expensive products purchased by many consumers. In the U.S., home sellers pay an estimated $100 billion annually in commissions.3

Yet, as this report shows, it is not easy for consumers to learn about this expense. In reality, traditional firms that dominate the residential real estate brokerage industry choose not to advertise their commission levels or disclose these levels on their websites. General phone inquiries to real estate firms usually do not elicit information about commission levels during those calls. When asked directly by a home seller about the commission charged, many agents are reluctant to discuss these costs. 

Not surprisingly, then, the typical five to six percent commission of the sale price is not known by many consumers. In fact, in a national survey of a representative sample of 2,009 adult Americans, only 32 percent said they thought that agents typically charged this amount. Even among the 453 that had sold or purchased a home in the past five years, only 44 percent thought that the typical commission was either five or six percent.4

Truth to be told, a seller may not truly feel the impact of the brokerage fees until it’s time to sign the closing papers. Moreover, aside from these five (5) hidden costs, reports pulled on your property that you agreed to pay for can be added also at your costs. 

Call SureClosing right now at 678-399-9075 or send us a message. We can discuss the details of your house, its current market value, and see which method of sale will work best for you.

Sources:

3 Multiplying the latest average home sale price reported by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis ($378,700) by the number of home sales in 2018 (6 million) by an average commission of 5% (it’s higher than this according to Real Trends) yields a product of $114 billion, which must be adjusted down for those homes sold without assistance from agents (FSBOs). 

4 Engine Group U.S. Online Omnibus Survey conducted September 5-11, 2019, for the Consumer Federation of America. The sample of 2009 was broadly representative of the U.S. adult population. The question asked was: “What do you think is the typical real estate commission on the sale of a home? The commission is a percentage of the sale price.” Respondents were asked to give a whole number percentage from one to ten.

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