The Florida Realtor® Claiming “Better Sales Results”
Still Motivated by Commissions
ADDvantage™ works diligently for our flat fee MLS listed sellers and we're up-to-date with the ever changing climate within the discount real estate market, industry trends and tactics. Knowledge is power and we believe this is true for FSBO sellers, as well. We did our homework for two years prior to offering our brand flat fee MLS to Florida consumers, in order to provide the very best service for home sellers wishing to list “for sale by owner” in the MLS while still achieving the marketing benefits of a national real estate company.
With 33 years in the Florida discount real estate industry, our brand of flat fee MLS evolved in short from being discouraged with the traditional way of real estate. ADDvantage™ brand of flat fee MLS started in Miami-Dade in 2001 and is now available throughout 90% of Florida--from Miami-Dade to Duval County and on the west coast of Florida from Collier County (Naples) all the way to Panama City! ADDvantage™ flat fee MLS has an ongoing desire to offer more flat fee MLS real estate services to Florida sellers. Without compromise, Florida sellers can obtain all of the traditional real estate services that a FSBO might need, with one flat fee. Whether “self-represented” using MLS ADDvantage® or Street Smart ADDvantage® or getting full contract representation with Professional ADDvantage™, we offer flat fee Florida MLS plans and options that command results and save Florida sellers big money! It is important that Florida property sellers are provided with accurate and crucial information with regards to listing and selling using flat fee MLS and discounted real estate services. We want to save Florida sellers the high cost of real estate commissions and our flat fee listed sellers pay no commission when they sell themselves. Sellers can always upgrade their flat fee MLS plan to either one of ADDvantage's “full service representation” MLS programs. When a seller needs additional assistance, they opt for Professional ADDvantage™, in which case, the seller pays only $799 at close, for this elite “contract to close” service (negotiating, counteroffers & inspections-to the close). All sellers, however, remain in full control of their flat fee MLS listing in Florida at all times.
If you're going to list your Florida home, condo or land for sale using a flat fee MLS, you now must wade through a myriad of flat fee offerings and then decide which companies are truly going to represent the sellers' best interests as well as offer the highest level of marketing and ease of listing. Without doubt, we know that sellers have many flat fee options. ADDvantage™® provides comprehensive real estate news and honest information in order to help you with your decision to list flat fee in the MLS. We've told you about how doing business with an unknown flat fee MLS company is dangerous and how to avoid doing so. Tips on how to sell successfully, pricing your home right in a buyer's market and other helpful resources to better guide the flat fee “FSBO” MLS seller, and all of this is accessible from our website. We've designed our software and maintain our website so that most sellers never have to call us on the phone! Even so, we provide 9AM-6PM live customer service, 7 days a week…just in case you do!
Now, we're going to touch on a “tender” subject--Flat fee listing with a discount MLS company v. listing at 6% with a “full-service” agent
Real estate agents who are able to list Florida sellers for “one flat fee” are simply selling the “FSBO” seller listing services without the intent of locking them into a 6 month listing agreement nor charging them a 3% listing commission as a ”finders fee”. The real estate agent may insinuate to the seller that they, “the full-service agent,” are better equipped to bring sellers more buyers and will therefore sell the property quicker. Agents often tell sellers that they only “show” their own listings to potential buyers. This may sound like the truth, and may even sound beneficial to the seller but-- it isn't. The goal of the listing agent is to get both sides of the commission automatically costing the seller 6%. Because it's a commission game, the odds of the listing broker finding the buyer and getting both sides of the listing commission are rare because once a property in posted in the MLS, it's free game for 10,000 local Realtors®. The truth is that their buyer is savvy and most possess Internet skills to search Realtor® .com, Homes.com, local MLS sites such as www.gtar.org, Tampa, Florida and www.miamire.com in Miami. Coldwell Banker, Century21 and other national websites take the same IDX feed that feeds Realtor® .com and populate their websites accordingly and they're all viewable by the “public” consumer. Realtors® are fooling themselves if they believe they can put blinders on their well-educated buyers and show only a select group of properties for sale. As well, one of the HOTEST topics at Realtor® seminars, meeting, continuing education classes, and quarterly MLS board reports in just this subject. The teeth behind keeping the real estate playing field level between discount and traditional real estate models in the Department of Justice, or better stated the best interest of the general public. The DOJ is currently suing many MLS boards and Realtors® throughout the United States for boycotting and other predatory sales practices. Get sued by the DOJ and a Realtor® might as well find another career. While the DOJ (“big brother”) is real, the real story is…
Big City Realtors® v. Small Town Realtors® and what they really know about Discount Flat fee MLS “self-represented” sellers
ADDvantage™ is well educated on offering flat fee MLS services to Florida sellers, as members of 34 Florida MLS boards and having been in the discount real estate commission business since 2001, ADDvantage™ is well aware of what and how the Florida Realtor® thinks.
During our 6 years in Florida competing for flat fee MLS “FSBO” business, speaking with MLS boards, setting up Realtor® showings and running one of Florida's most recognized names in discount real estate brokering, we have run into these encounters:
1) Typically a male Realtor®, 40's say's the following, “do you have the deed restrictions of the following MLS number?” We reply, “Let me check our system and see if the seller has stored them under their ‘user documents’…I'm sorry, they haven't…I'm sure the seller will provide these”…then the Realtor® says “is this one of those ‘pay a fee and get in the MLS’ services?”…and proceeds to rant about flat fee MLS. Was this a real inconvenience for the prissy Realtor? Yes and no. Does this Realtor® himself have all the deed restrictions on his listings? Maybe yes. Is it a fair request? Possible yes because making an offer on a property does depend on whether his buyer can park their boat in front or have a 90 lb dog in the condo. Sure the Realtor® can research this himself, but because ADDvantage™ is a leader in flat fee MLS listings in Florida, we have a reputation of servicing Realtors® requests. One of our goals at ADDvantage™ is to have these two critical documents stored for all of our clients. We emphasize the importance of having these documents in our welcome letter as well as send reminders by email every 10 days until received.
Solution: At ADDvantage™ we need two things from sellers:
i) Seller's Real Property Disclosure (available under “important seller forms”); This two page document is a must: (a) scan into your account under “user documents” or; (b) fax to us and we'll store it for you
ii) The Do's and Don'ts section of deed restrictions or condo docs (Home Owners or Condo association)
At ADDvantage™ we want our service to be practically indistinguishable from traditional full service. By having these two documents stored in our system, we can rapidly respond to Realtor® requests for such documents, putting a smile on the Realtors' faces and an offer coming quickly to our flat fee listed seller.
2) In Florida, in some very small communities, where MLS board members are few (tiny towns), there remain some pockets that might not know of the DOJ or the definition of predatory monopolistic sales practices. They couldn't care less about DOJ. While there will always be some small communities that are resistant to change, ADDvantage™ has found success selling for Florida flat fee MLS clients in almost every city in Florida, large and small. Gainesville being small, has been very successful for our flat fee MLS “FSBO seller”. Miami, Orlando, Jacksonville, Tampa, St. Pete, Bradenton, Naples, Sarasota, Tallahassee, and other major Florida cities is a completely different story. In major metropolitan cities, Realtors® see themselves as one of many. Some of these big city Realtors® don't even know about “limited service companies” (even though ADDvantage™ is both a “limited” and “represented seller” company) and proceed as instructed by ADDvantage™. And most are happy to have a buyer and appreciate what we offer- 9AM-6PM, 7 days a week phone support to assist them in scheduling a showing. As well, many do understand our business model and work the deal accordingly.
What Motivates The Florida Real Estate Agent?
Realtors® are commission motivated. They don't receive regular paychecks and their only sources of income are monies derived from sales commissions and sometimes referral fees. There's no kidding anyone about today's housing market and it IS a buyers market. The fact is that, Realtors® are having a tough time of it and they will show any house that their buyer is interested in-- and that pays them a commission.
If times were different and was a “sellers” market, the Realtor® would again take the offered co-brokerage commission in a flat fee listed property because listings are scarce. In either market condition, flat fee MLS listed sellers get noticed and ADDvantage™ gets many of their listing “sold”.
The agent may have presented the seller with a comprehensive listing package adorned with whistles and bells. Next thing you know the unsuspecting seller is holding a listing agreement and is one pen stroke and a fruit platter away from being locked into a 6 month traditional listing contract; the very thing the seller wanted to avoid. And for good reason…
If It Sounds Too Good to Be True Just Get Proof
Agents often boast, “I sell more homes than the other company.” The seller's response might be, “Great, exactly how many of your sales in the past six months have been within 10 miles of my property?” Let the Realtor® spill their stats— “Matter of fact, I've sold 3 homes!” The smart seller might say, “Super! “Now, of those 3 homes sold, how many were actually sold by you and not by another Florida Realtor® from your company or even an agent from different company? I'm asking about just the sales in which you made BOTH sides of the commission?” The Realtor's® answer is ___?
That's the real question because “listing commissions” are only worth it if the Realtor® has SOLID proof and the power to control buyers by being a magnet for buyers. Some Realtors® are powerful within their geographic “farm” area and at times they are worth their fee. Just make sure the listing commission that they charge is backed up with some recent proof of success. What's our point? Listing commissions can occasionally be worthwhile. Florida sellers simply need to remember to back it up with the honest facts.
If you are flat fee listed with ADDvantage™® and a Realtor® is knocking at your door to pay 6%…Is it Better to Drop the Price of Your Florida Property by 3% or pay 6% in Commissions—After All, this is About YOUR Sale!
Wouldn't you rather reduce the listing price of your property by 3% than offer a full-service agent 6%, giving that 3% to them? While marketing property in this buyers market, price seems to be the key to selling, every time.
If you are listed in any one of Florida's MLS's using flat fee service and no viable offer has been presented to you and you are looking for more showings-- you may be better served by lowering your list price rather than offering an additional 3% as a listing commission to a full-service Realtor®.
As well, in most cases, the new Realtor® will not only charge an additional 3% but will likely request the seller lower the price as well. Why does a flat fee listed seller capitulate to the full service Realtor®? The Realtor® convinces the seller that they can do a better job but in most cases that isn't what's going to happen.
The truth: ADDvantage™ has superior Internet marketing to most full-service Realtors® and we never miss any buyer leads. Just try to find a full service Realtor® who will answer his/her phone 9AM-6PM, every single day. ADDvantage™ is the most cost effective way to market FSBO properties in Florida through the MLS, getting the message delivered accurately to Realtor® s and unrepresented buyers through the US, UK and Europe.
If one really wants to bring attention to one's property, offer the 6% that you are considering giving a full service Realtor® as a co-broke-meaning the flat fee MLS Company will offer 6% to any Realtor® /agent that brings a buyer. With a commission more than double the average, that's getting the message out there. In most cases, it's another (buyer's) agent that will ultimately sell your home anyway so focusing your efforts on attracting them is a better strategy than employing the services a listing agent who will make a chunk regardless of who sells it. Plus, by remaining flat fee listed with ADDvantage™, the seller still maintains the possibility of selling to an unrepresented buyer, thus avoiding a commission all together and as we have heard many times, I got more showing with ADDvantage™!
The ADDvantage™ Brand of Flat Fee MLS Stands Strong
When you list with ADDvantage™ flat fee MLS, real estate agents have access to your listing via the MLS and unrepresented buyers through Realtor® .com, Homes.com and other prolific real estate websites. Buyers, the majority of whom are very web savvy, will have access to your flat fee MLS home listing all over the internet when they list flat fee MLS with us. List flat fee MLS using MLS ADDvantage® and you'll receive peak exposure, not only in the MLS, but on Realtor® .com, Homes.com, GetMoreOffers.com, and in the U.K. and Europe on WorldProperties.com. Sellers who list flat fee MLS with ADDvantage™ receive traffic via major internet portal advertisements on Yahoo Classifieds, Google, AOL, MSN, Askjeeves,Trulia and many others. Internet traffic will also be driven to your property advertisements by way of the numerous real estate website portals that we're linked with. More traffic, more buyers, more sales. Sellers…Don't leave the sale of your property in the hands of one agent who wishes to have it all.
ADDvantage™ maintains a full time marketing department and an IT department allowing us to offer the highest level of internet marketing for your property—nationally and internationally. Our MLS administrators are professionally trained and will treat your listing with kid gloves ensuring flat fee MLS listing accuracy. Sellers who do require additional real estate services, such as contract assistance or assistance with offers or closings can obtain that from ADDvantage™ as well! Listing with a flat fee MLS company like ADDvantage™®, doesn't mean you have to forgo full service. We work 7 days a week 9AM-6PM and we answer our phones with no hold cues. No waiting until Monday for your buyer leads. List flat fee MLS with ADDvantage™ and buyer leads will NEVER be missed and are always emailed directly to you, in real time. Buyer lead protection is guaranteed…100%! We protect our flat fee listed seller's leads, when other companies may not.
No other flat fee MLS service in Florida can save you thousands of dollars in commissions while upholding the level of customer service and marketing that we provide our Florida flat fee listed sellers. Before you choose a flat fee MLS, do your research and don't be afraid to ask for proof. We believe that if a seller is provided with accurate information, it is always to their ADDvantage™!