There are millions of homes bought and sold every year, most of them with the help of a real estate agent. However, there is still a segment of the population that chooses to go it alone when it comes time to sell or buy a home.
There are different reasons for this, many of which aren't very good. The only good reason might be if you're an agent yourself, and even then, it might be better to work with another agent so that you're not letting your own emotion cloud your judgment. Here are some of the worst reasons for not hiring a real estate agent:
1. To save some money
You might think you're guaranteed to save yourself money by not hiring a real estate agent, but that's not true. It's very likely that it will cost you money during the process because of all of the potential pitfalls that you're not even aware of. There are multiple points in a real estate transaction where making the right decision, or knowing what to look for will save you thousands of dollars. Real estate agents know this.
2. Because you think you're a great negotiator
You probably think you're a great negotiator, and you might be, but you also might not be as good as you think. In fact, there are many billionaires and CEO's who openly admit that they aren't good at negotiating, and oftentimes have other people negotiate on their behalf. Again, understanding real estate, and what factors may affect price are things that a real estate agent knows that can help with negotiation, and will get you a much better deal.
3. You read about a bad experience someone had
Of course there are horror stories on social media and forums about people's experience buying and selling a home. This shouldn't deter you from hiring an agent to guide you through the process, because you're much more likely to find yourself in a nightmare scenario if you go it alone. There's an important thing to remember about the nightmares you see online; people are much more likely to post about their negative experiences than their positive ones. There are lots horror stories about hospitals, restaurants, and hotels too — that doesn't mean you'll never leave the house again, right?
4. Because you saw a real estate show on HGTV
We all love real estate shows. It's a lot of fun to sit back and watch a shockingly good-looking couple flip a home and make a $50,000 profit in less than 30 minutes. But it's important not to confuse television with reality. You can't learn everything you need to know from watching tv, otherwise this country would be full of expert martial artists, race-car drivers, and stand-up comedians. Hire someone with real-world experience to help you along.
5. You think you're the only one who knows how much your home is "really worth"
You love your home, and it's likely that you love it and appreciate it more than anyone else does. It's completely natural to not only develop a sentimental attachment to where you've spent years of your life, but to also appreciate all of the repairs, upgrades, and other special details that you know and love. But just because you believe your home should be priced a certain way, doesn't mean that's what the market will bear. Having a business-minded, detached approach to pricing and selling your home is critical to a successful real estate transaction.
6. Because... "How hard could it really be?"
Some lessons in life are only learned through experience. Real estate agents have studied, been through it, and know that conducting a real estate transaction can be a potential minefield if you're not careful. As a buyer or seller, it's important not to minimize the difficulty and effort that goes into closing on a home. Hire a real estate agent, and let them worry about the difficult aspects, you'll be glad you did.