Selling A House In The Digital Age: Why Realtors Are A Thing Of The Past
Few of us take the time to stop and think of all the myriad ways the internet has streamlined our lives. We forget that before we had Paypal, we sent money through the banks, via cumbersome (and costly) checks, money orders, and wire transfers. In a few years, we won’t pause to reflect on what taking a taxi was like before Uber or what booking a place to stay was like before AirBnB (i.e., slow, inflexible, and expensive). The internet has revolutionized the way we live and work to such an extent that we completely take it for granted… Until we bump up against an outdated, tedious process like working with a realtor. Then we begin to realize just how much needless paperwork, bureaucracy, and sky-high fees used to make our lives more difficult.
When the profession of real estate brokerage was invented, the internet did not exist. There was therefore no convenient way to share information about properties currently for sale: How much they cost, what issues there might be with the home, what updates had been done recently, etc. Additionally, there were few effective channels available to advertise houses for sale, so sellers had a hard time finding buyers on their own.
Today, all of the above has changed: A quick look through various realtors’ websites shows that they often have less information about available properties than third-party sites do. It’s easy for home buyers and sellers alike to get a sense of what a property should be valued at and, better still, it’s incredibly easy for sellers to find interested buyers for their homes. In fact, as a seller, you don’t even have to worry about trying to sell your house to (potentially unreliable) individual buyers. Instead, you can sell your house directly to an online real estate investor.
Benefits Of Selling Your House To An Online Real Estate Investor
- Multiple payment options. When you sell to a real estate investor, you decide how you want to get paid. Most investors offer a wide range of payment options, such as certified funds or cash (either a lump sum or through installments—it’s up to you). Some investors will even take your mortgage over for you. Working with cash means that you (and your investor) can bypass much of the tight financial restrictions that were introduced to regulate real estate sales after the recession. You can also get a fair appraisal; many appraisers are still giving recession-level home appraisals, much to the dismay of sellers. Investors, on the other hand, are typically more up to date on current market prices.
- The ability to sell your home “as is”. Once upon a time, American home buyers were more than happy to purchase houses that were considered “fixer uppers” and restore them to their former glory. Unfortunately, a number of factors (less leisure time, the increasing cost of home renovations and materials, a decline in “hands on” skills and knowledge) have coalesced to create a market wherein only completely updated homes are considered desirable. As such, if you want to sell through a realtor, you’ll first need to invest tens of thousands of dollars into your home to make sure it’s a showpiece. Obviously, this isn’t an option for many house sellers.
Fortunately, investors aren’t as picky as the average buyer, and the vast majority of them are perfectly willing to purchase homes “as is.” Incredibly, most of them will do this without even inspecting your home first! They’ll give you an offer up front so that you can begin the sale process and get your money sooner.
For sellers who simply cannot afford costly repairs, real estate investors are often the only viable option. While realtors will accept “fixer upper” homes, they’ll usually let them sit on the market for months or even years rather than aggressively trying to move them. Eventually, the frustrated seller usually ends up settling for a much lower offer than they should, just desperate to get the sale over with.
- Extremely low fees. Closing costs and commission fees are a nightmare for many people who go through the traditional real estate sale process. They’re so high that they can effectively eat up any profit you hoped to make on the sale of your home. Many investors, on the other hand, don’t even charge these fees, let alone charge high fees. To get an idea of how much you’ll save by using an investor, check our free Closing Cost Savings Calculator.
- Fast closings. There are a lot of things that can get in the way of closing a house sale when you use a realtor. You need to make sure financing gets approved, you have to have the house appraised, have the house inspected, and so on, and so on… All of this can take weeks or months to achieve. Investors, however, can bypass all of these proceedings and get down to business. As a result, many investors will close the sale of your house within 7 days.
- Using an investor is the safest option. Whether you use a realtor or choose to try to sell your home by yourself, you’ll have to deal with numerous strangers wandering through your house when you’re not there. It’s certainly not unheard of for valuables to go missing during this process, and some people have even endured full-scale home invasions after inadvertently allowing robbers in to assess their property. Using an investor effectively protects you from this risk because no one will enter your home during the sale process, other than possibly the investor.
All things considered, using a realtor is simply more hassle than it’s worth in the digital age. The internet provides a faster, safer, cheaper, and more effective method for selling your home: Direct purchase. When you use an online investor, getting a fair return on your investment is just a few clicks away.