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2007-08-30 14:20:00 Shows How a REALTOR Can Save You Money

Navigating today's housing market may require the help of an experienced professional. Check out these helpful tips on using a REALTOR brought to you by

It's a common misperception that the easiest way to save money during a home sale is to cut out the REALTOR® and their 5-6% commission. Here are the ways using a REALTOR® can in fact save you time and money.

1. REALTORS® and home buying - As a home buyer, you are spared the expense of using a REALTOR® to represent you. The commission is paid by the seller. Benefits abound: The REALTOR® takes your preferences for neighborhood, size, amenities and features and filters all the homes on the market to your specifications, and uses their expertise in the market to advise you on the value of each home. When you are ready to make a bid, the REALTOR® will use their expertise to advise you on an appropriate offer.

2. REALTORS® and selling a home - When the market is hot and homes are practically selling themselves, is it really worth the REALTOR'S® five-figure commission? In most cases, yes. The biggest benefit that commission buys you is distribution and advertising for your home. The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a proprietary electronic database of every property listed with a REALTOR®. Prospective buyers and other REALTORS® use the MLS to search for properties for themselves and their clients. Most sellers who list their house as for-sale-by-owner cannot list their home on the MLS; the burden of advertising falls squarely on the shoulders of the seller, including pictures, signage and other promotional materials. In addition, REALTORS® have easy access to market data - how many properties in the neighborhood sold recently, for how much, and how long they took to sell: all useful information for deciding how much to list your home for.

3. The value of time and peace of mind - Selling a home requires a significant time investment. Not only do you need to prepare your home for sale - minor repairs, cosmetic improvements, a deep cleaning - but someone needs to accompany any prospective buyers when they come to walk through. It can be disconcerting to have strangers casting a critical eye on the property you called home. REALTORS® often recommend that the homeowner leave the house when buyers walk through. A lockbox is placed on the door, and the buyer's agent calls your REALTOR® for the code, and accompanies the prospective buyer.

It's in a REALTOR'S® best interest to make the process go as smoothly as possible. If any issues crop up, with the appraisal, the mortgage company or the closing attorney, your REALTOR® should have an intimate knowledge of the process - useful for handling any unexpected snags.

4. REALTORS® are professionals -As with other professionals, like financial advisors or healthcare professionals, ultimately you - as either a home buyer or seller - are responsible for your decisions. Working with a REALTOR® can save you time, money and stress. But, it's a partnership - don't surrender your good judgment just because you are working with someone with a license.

For more information about buying a selling a home and using a REALTOR® in today's market, visit the LendingTree Smart Borrower Center.

About LendingTree, LLC

LendingTree, LLC is the nation's number one online lending exchange, providing a marketplace that connects consumers with multiple lenders that compete for their business. Since inception, LendingTree has facilitated more than 20 million loan requests and $152 billion in closed loan transactions. LendingTree provides access to mortgages and refinance loans, home equity loans/lines of credit, auto loans, personal loans, credit cards and high-yield savings accounts via and 800-555-TREE.

Launched in 1998 with headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, LendingTree, LLC also owns and operates LendingTree Loans sm, LendingTree Settlement Services, LLC, GetSmart®, and LendingTree, LLC is an operating company of IAC.

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