Should You Use a Traditional Real Estate Agent to Sell Your House?

You want to sell your house, so you do what anyone might do: work with a real estate agent. But real estate agents charge high fees for commission. It’s also more challenging for them to sell a house as-is. If you work with a licensed real estate agent, you want to have the confidence that they can deliver on their services.

But if you don’t want to work with a real estate agent, you have other options. In fact, there are several other ways to sell your house that don’t require the services of an agent. If you’re looking to sell, you may want to familiarize yourself with these different approaches. At Sundae, we’re committed to helping sellers get the most out of selling their home and avoid paying high fees. Let’s take a closer look at the issues and how we can help.

A look at the numbers

There’s no shortage of real estate agents to work with. In fact, there are over 3 million licensed real estate agents out there and in March of 2022, 5.77M existing homes were sold, according to the National Association of Realtors. With most transactions, agents earned their commissions at the expense of the seller.

Consider this: the typical commission on a home sale is six percent. Three percent of that goes to the seller’s agent (or listing agent) and the other three percent goes to the buyer’s agent. And who typically pays these fees? The seller.

So for a $300,000 home sale, $18,000 is for paying fees to real estate agents. That’s a significant chunk of change.

Why working with an agent carries risks

You might be thinking that $18,000 is there to pay for someone to help you, guide you along the process, and be your advocate. Let’s face it, selling a home is no easy task and you want the assurance of a professional to assist you. We get it.

Unfortunately, sometimes the agent’s goals are not in line with yours. At the end of the day, they want a sale. That’s their business. But in some cases, getting a transaction done can get in the way of making sure you get the best deal.

For example, a real estate agent may be eager to sell your home, even at below asking price, in order to move onto the next deal. Lowering prices can help that process move forward but has a negative impact on the seller. Let’s take a look at two examples.

Scenario 1.

$300,000 sale. Agents receive $18,000. The seller receives $282,000.

Scenario 2.

$275,000 sale. Agents receive $16,500. The seller receives $258,000.

Even though there’s a $25,000 difference in sale price, the difference for the real estate agent is only $1,500. For the seller? Twenty four thousand dollars. Lowering the price can expedite the selling process and it matters very little to the agent because it has a fairly low impact on them.

But as you can see, there’s a huge cost for sellers. On top of that, there are additional costs that sellers have to deal with. To get your home ready for a sale, you typically have to invest in some improvements. Think new paint, new carpets, and staging. All of that could run you up to $3,000 to $9,000. Not exactly a small amount of money, especially if you need to sell your home.

In all of these ways, the seller gets the short end of the stick and does the majority of the work. So it’s critical that you think through the possible cost implications before choosing an agent.

Working with Sundae

If you want to sell as-is, there are buyers out there who will buy your home. Use caution, however, as some predatory off-market buyers can take advantage of you. If they sense you are not knowledgeable about what your home is worth, they may try to persuade you to accept a low offer.

It’s important to understand that not all off-market buyers use predatory practices to get you to sign an agreement. We understand that it’s hard to tell a good investor from a bad one, so we decided to take the work out of it altogether.

When you work with Sundae, on the other hand, your home will only be presented to local property investors who will compete for the opportunity to buy your home. That competition will result in a higher offer price for you, the seller. Sundae is addressing the disparities in real estate to make selling your home more advantageous and profitable.

Our mission is to put as much money back into the pockets of the seller as possible. Instead of charging the seller a fee like traditional real estate agents, we charge the buyer a fee to ensure you get the highest price possible. We are committed to working with sellers and improving the process so they can get the most out of selling their home and get the money they deserve.

On top of that, you may be eligible for up to a $10,000 cash advance before closing to help with your expenses. We also have a flexible timeline and will work with you if you need a little more time in your home.

Why Is It Smart to List on Our Marketplace While You Talk to a Real Estate Agent?

It’s free to list on Sundae’s Marketplace, so give that a try first. If you’re not happy with the offers you receive from our investors, you can always list your house on the MLS. In fact, you can even compare the top offer you get from an investor with other offers your real estate agent brings. You’ll just need to ask your real estate agent to exclude the buyer from the listing agreement before you sign.

Whatever your plans may be, Sundae is here to be a resource for sellers. We’re advocates and champions of home sellers and want to provide the information you need to get the most out of selling your home.

This material is for informational purposes only and has been prepared without regard to your individual circumstances. This data may not be representative of all transactions on Sundae’s marketplace, as some buyers may submit offers which include different terms as discussed above. At Sundae, although Sellers typically pay no commission fees, we do receive a commission from the buyer. The summary or statements made about the MLS and/or iBuyer transactions are not representative of all MLS and/or iBuyer transactions.. Other terms, conditions, and/or fees may apply for all transaction types shown above.

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Kyle Spearin

Kyle is Sundae's Real Estate Editor. As both an investor and content marketing professional, Kyle combines his passion for real estate investing and educational background with his love of helping others. His experience with real estate tech companies, including contributing to BiggerPockets Pro, gives him insight into markets across the United States.