Selling with a Real Estate Broker: 6 Myths Deconstructed
Negative perceptions and erroneous beliefs
about real estate brokers can be hard to shake! Between what’s in the media and
what’s posted on social networks, it can be hard to distinguish what’s true
from what’s false. And that’s without considering the comments of those close
to us who sometimes have a strong opinion on the matter. In the following
article, we will deconstruct the six main myths of selling with a real estate
broker so that you have a realistic picture of the situation.
Myth 1: You’ll Save Money by Selling Your Property Yourself
Not necessarily. In fact, Jacques Nantel, professor emeritus at HEC Montréal, has studied this issue. His research showed that a seller who was guided by a real estate broker received an average of 8 per cent more for their property than if they sold it on their own. In some cases, the difference was as much as 12 per cent. Therefore, a real estate broker has the market knowledge, the expertise of the selling process and the skills to make your property stand out to many serious buyers.
With this in mind, you need to stop focusing on the broker’s fee and start thinking about the end result, i.e., the amount of money you will have left once the transaction is completed. In fact, their guidance will allow you to maximize all the conditions of the sale - not to mention the time and stress it will save you!
Myth 2: Real Estate Brokers Do Not Provide Objective Advice to Their Clients Because They Are Paid Based on Sales
The real estate activities of a real estate
broker are governed by strict ethical rules, defined by the government
regulator. The Real Estate Brokerage Act requires that brokers respect several legal
obligations, such as loyalty and transparency towards their clients. The
real estate professional acts as a true advisor to their clients so that the
transaction is carried out objectively and with complete transparency. To
complete a transaction, they must balance the objectives of the seller and
those of the buyer, while collaborating with the other professionals they work
with. Thus, the broker is not just a representative, they are proactive and
involved in the realization of their clients’ projects.
Myth 3: Real Estate Broker Commissions Are Too High
Real estate brokers are self-employed and
independent, even if they are grouped under different banners. They are only paid
when the transaction is completed. Thus, the compensation of a large part of
their work is not guaranteed. Moreover, over the years, their compensation has
been adjusted to reflect the changes of the real estate market. Each broker
suggests a type of compensation that takes into consideration the services and
the support they offer in order to close the transaction. As each property has
its own unique characteristics, each transaction also has its own!
Myth 4: You Are Protected From Costly Mistakes Even if You Sell Without a Broker
The role of a broker goes much further than
avoiding certain mistakes: they will also act to avoid oversights that could
prove to be very costly. Their expertise and experience in the field will allow
them to anticipate unpleasant surprises. Furthermore, the Fonds d’assurance
responsabilité professionnelle du courtage immobilier du Québec (FARCIQ) is designed to protect
clients in the event that they are faced with a problem during a transaction,
i.e., a fault, an error or an involuntary omission on the part of a broker or
an agency, and to provide them with access to recourse.
Myth 5: The Notary Is Ultimately Responsible for Protecting Their Clients
The notary is responsible for drafting the
deed of sale, which does not include the other checks in the real estate
transaction. They therefore intervene at the very end of the purchasing process
and, since they do not visit the properties, they will have to refer to the
promise to purchase - and any supporting documents that accompany it - hence
the importance of presenting well drafted and complete documents to be
protected in case there is a dispute. In short, the notary’s expertise is
complementary to that of a real estate broker.
Myth 6: Real Estate Brokers Put Pressure on Future Buyers
Owners who wish to sell their house, condo or cottage without an intermediary are not obliged to act according to the book: they can therefore change the rules of the game as they please, much to the dismay of potential buyers! A real estate broker must comply with the Real Estate Brokerage Act or risk having their licence suspended or even revoked. Therefore, they cannot put undue pressure on future buyers. In fact, the Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ) supervises them in this regard.