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Home sellers’ satisfaction with their listing agent is up in 2011

Home seller profile

The 2011 National Association of Realtors® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers surveyed 5,708 home buyers and sellers, discovering that the demographics among buyers and sellers have changed this year, both of which are older, have higher incomes and are more likely to be married. What hasn’t changed much is the relationship between Realtor and consumer, with word of mouth referral still topping the ways home buyers and sellers initially connect with their agents.

Home listing marketing methods

The trade association reports that “the marketing method of sellers continued to branch out into creative ways to use technology to capture the buyer’s attention and hopefully spark the buyer to look at and purchase the home.” Listings on the internet are the top marketing source of sellers (92 percent),
one in three are also using nontraditional websites, 5 percent cite that social networking websites were used to market their home and video hosting sites were used by 3 percent, up considerably this year. Traditional marketing tools are still popular this yer with 77 percent of homes featuring yard signs and 58 percent utilizing open houses.

How listing agents were paid in 2011

The majority of real estate agents (78 percent) were paid by the seller in full this year, almost exclusively as a percent of the sales price. Fully 8 percent were compensated by the buyer and seller, with only 5 percent compensated by the buyer.

Interestingly, in roughly two in five sellers surveyed, the real estate agent initiated the discussion of compensation while one in three cases, the client brought up compensation. NAR reports taht in most cases, the real estate agent was willing to negotiate their commission or fee while 13 percent of sellers were unaware that the commission could possibly be negotiated.

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Sellers’ satisfaction levels

As cited previously, word of mouth referrals are still the top ways agents earn new business, and 84 percent of buyers this year reported that they would recommend their listing agent to others or use their agent for their next transaction. Satisfaction levels are up a bit from last year despite plummeting values across the nation.

The takeaway

Web listings and yard signs still rule, most listing agents were paid by the seller in full, and much of the time, agents were the instigators of the conversation about commission which they frequently were willing to negotiate on. The share of sellers who were satisfied with their agent this year rose from last, despite lower home values.

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