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The Difference Between a Listing Agent and a Selling Agent
It’s always recommended to have an experienced real estate agent or REALTOR by your side when buying or selling residential, land and/or commercial property. And if you’ve decided to go the real estate agent route, you may be wondering how listing agents differ from selling agents – and which one is right for your situation.
The biggest difference between listing agents and selling agents is who they represent. Listing agents market properties for sellers, while selling agents help buyers search for properties that meet their needs. Both are key to a smooth real estate transaction, and both have different strengths and skills they bring to the table.
So what can you expect when you hire one? Below, we’re taking a deeper look into what listing agents and selling agents do, and, more importantly, how they can help you close on your land deal.
Listing Agents: Purpose and Responsibilities
When you’re ready to sell, you want someone with experience by your side. That’s where listing agents come in, assisting sellers with all of the various aspects of marketing, listing, and selling properties to the highest bidders.
Some of the key tasks a listing agent will take on include:
- Pricing guidance and comp research
- Optimizing listings, including
- Coordinating showings
- Networking within real estate community coordination of photos, videos, and text
- Overseeing marketing efforts
- Receiving offers and streamlining buyer-seller communications
- Organizing closing documents
To ensure a particular listing agent is a good fit for your needs, be sure to ask about their experience in the specific market category of your property. For example, some agents are skilled in residential home sales but might be less comfortable (and less connected) when it comes to selling land. You want a listing agent who truly knows the land market and won’t just facilitate your sale but will help guide you through every step of the process.
Selling Agents: Purpose and Responsibilities
Selling agents, more commonly referred to as buyer’s agents, work with buyers to find and purchase their perfect properties. If you’re on the hunt, a strong selling agent will be able to provide you with careful guidance backed by market insight. They’ll also be able to assist you in facilitating all the necessary tasks that need to happen before you close.
Specific responsibilities of a selling agent may include:
- Helping buyers define their property must-haves in terms of price, location, and allowable usage
- Researching zoning laws and restrictions
- Sorting through listings and providing buyers with a curated selection of properties that meet their preferences
- Assisting with financing questions and pre-approvals
- Scheduling showings
- Writing offers and communicating with listing agents
- Helping arrange inspections, surveys, and other steps in the closing process
Just like with a listing agent, you want to do your due diligence to make sure a selling agent has the specific experience you’re seeking before hiring them on. Selling agents who primarily work in the residential housing market, as in the example noted above, may not understand the nuances involved in buying land and, as a result, won’t be quite as helpful in coordinating the many ins-and-outs involved in the process.