If I lined up 10 agents right now, at least 9 of them would tell you 6%…as that figure has been the “standard” for decades. The truth is, there is no “established standard.” Commission is 100% negotiable. So as a Broker who relies on commission to provide for my family, why am I telling you this? Because no one else will.
In my opinion, the amount of commission charged should be commensurate with the level of effort and costs associated with getting your property sold. Maybe you already have a buyer and just need some guidance through the plethora of documents required to transfer a property these days…that certainly doesn’t warrant a 6% fee. Perhaps your property is turnkey, in a highly desirable area…not likely it’s going to take a gargantuan effort to move it. On the other hand, I’ve had transactions where 7-8% was more in line for what it took to sell the property. I’ve also charged as little as $1500.
The truth is, like anything else, the person you are hiring needs to justify the fee. Don’t be afraid to ask how the agent came up with their number. If they tell you, “that’s the going rate,” move on to someone who has actually put some thought into it. There is no going rate. However, if you’re comfortable with their answer, perhaps you have the right agent. You should feel that you’re being charged fairly, and that you’ll get your money’s worth for what you do pay.
A good agent will nearly pay for themselves in the form of a higher net proceeds, typically generated by strong negotiating skills and a quicker sale, resulting in lower holding costs and a more predictable timeline for you to move on to the next chapter of your life. It’s the largest cost you will have in selling your home…get your money’s worth.