FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Real Estate doesn’t have to be hard, we’ll answer your questions

REAL ESTATE FAQ’s

  1. According to the Multiple Listing Service, Duffy Realty’s days on market is: 93 Days fewer (that’s 4 mortgage payments) than the market as a whole and receives nearly 8% more of the asking price.
  2. We offer more strategic marketing plans to get buyers to your home by allowing you to give an incentive to the buyer and buyer’s agent instead of overpaying us, the listing agent.
  3. Our goal is to give you options for pricing that will allow you to take action when you want, at no charge to change the listing.
  4. You are in charge of the process which is exactly who needs to be in charge no matter what commission you pay, you are the expert. However, with that being said, this process does not take any longer than any other way of listing your home.
  5. We expose your property to every buyer in the marketplace, not just 1/2 of the buyers like other models of advertising do.

If you want the best price possible for your home, you have to have a strategy to get it.

There are factors that will yield you the highest price.

  1. According to the Multiple Listing Service, Duffy Realty’s days on market is: 93 Days fewer (that’s 4 mortgage payments) than the market as a whole and receives nearly 8% more of the asking price.
  2. Your property being in the best possible condition for the least amount of money.
  3. You having a strategy of what to do besides lowering your price as lowering your price can be deadly, leaving you with no options if you decide you made a mistake.
  4. You have to decide if patience is the key to the equation.
  5. Your property gets exposed to every buyer in the marketplace at the time, not just 1/2 of the buyers like other models advertise to.

We can help you will all of this and here is some news from the Multiple Listing Service on what we are able to do for our clients.

Setting a List Price for your property is easier than most agents make it appear when you have a good process that comes from listing over 12,000 properties and selling them within the record or time AND list price to sales price percentages that we have.

This table is supported by the Multiple Listing Service.

Days on Market
Avg Sale Price
Avg Sale/Ask Price
Rhonda Duffy
77 days
$276,500.50
98%
Whole Market
170 days
$298,698.50
91.50%
Difference
93 days – (4 MORTGAGE PAYMENTS!)
6.50%

We use methods of setting a list price that not only takes in to account your property and its features, we also use methods that yield the highest amount of buyers on the internet as the internet contributes to over 90% of the sales made in real estate transactions.

When we visit your home to list it, we will give you an aggressive asking price that could get your home sold quicker and a high price that could yield you more money in your pocket. We will also give you a strategy that is used by top agents in Atlanta to reposition the home in the market over a listing period.

However, with all of that being said, we have never left a home without listing it because we had an argument about what your house could sell for versus what you want to list for. You are the ultimate decision maker and you will receive no grief or criteria from us about it. With the amount of experience that we have had, we have learned:

  1. You can’t get a price that you didn’t ask for;
  2. People who ask a high price, sometimes get a high price;
  3. People who spend no effort in getting their home ready sometimes sell in the same amount of time and for the same money as someone who exerted a lot of energy towards getting ready; and most importantly,
  4. You are the expert when it comes to selling your home.

Our job is to guide you to a place that you feel that you can defend and tell your story – however you want it told.

If at any time during the process you want to change your price, text description or commission paid to a buyer’s agent, there is no charge to do so.

When Paying the Lowest Commission possible is important to know that you are still getting the essential services of an expert agent. At Duffy Realty we provide all the essential services of a real estate agent to produce the result of a closing. You are represented from beginning to end including contract negotiation.

Here is why you should pay Duffy Realty the lowest commission possible and yet still receive the highest service available in Atlanta of all agents:

This table is supported by the Multiple Listing Service.

Days on Market
Avg Sale Price
Avg Sale/Ask Price
Rhonda Duffy
77 days
$276,500.50
98%
Whole Market
170 days
$298,698.50
91.50%
Difference
93 days – (4 MORTGAGE PAYMENTS!)
6.50%

These are the reasons that our last 20,000 sellers needed or wanted to pay the lowest commission possible:

  1. They have sold enough houses that they know that agents are overpaid for the work performed and advertising is done on their behalf.
  2. They understand that the pay at closing model is based on a few sellers selling their home while others don’t and thus the agent does not get paid for the sale making the commission split high to cover the risk.
  3. They had offers in the past and they realize that they could have sold to that buyer had they been paying a lower commission (Duffy’s model is a total 3.8% commission on the average 300K home).
  4. They simply don’t have enough equity to sell the property and pay a high commission.
  5. They believe that selling real estate is simply putting the home in the MLS (it isn’t but that is what they believe).

However, will all of those reasons present, we still attempt to find every avenue to market a seller that makes logical sense including for sale by owner type websites, other real estate companies’ websites, any portal that offers MLS searching and membership sites that upgrade ads showing more of the home.

In the last comparison that we did against any real estate model or competitor, we ARE doing more advertising for our clients than over 50% of the agents in Atlanta.

Networking your home to All Agents in Atlanta is important.

The good news is that it is also easy and we do it over and over every day.

However, there are many more important sources for advertising and also methods of advertising to consider because ultimately what you want is for their buyers to know about your property as they are the ones that can buy.

So, we do a few things differently:

  1. We recognize that there are 4 types of buyers out there, 2 that search with agents and 2 that search on their own and hesitate to hire an agent to help them find homes and that percentage of people is rising because of the internet.
  2. We also recognize that when you list your home, you intend for all buyers near that price range to learn that you have a house for sale. But the truth is that most agents don’t recognize this and your property is missing your real buyer pool by $100.00 when they price your home the old way of doing advertising.
  3. We advertise is as many venues as possible and don’t mind paying on your behalf to do it as well as we give you optional ways to market yourself and some are free.
  4. We are a full brokerage with over 80 exclusive buyer agents. We work with over 2,000 buyers at any given time. Our buyers tell us where they want to go and we take them there.

Tips for preparing your house to sell

Before you list your home, you will definitely want to begin preparing your house to sell. To minimize your workload and your budget, try to think of ways to increase your home’s appeal without incurring heavy expenses for maintenance and upgrades.

Declutter
Before you spend money on improvements, spend some time decluttering. Sift through piles of paperwork sitting on your counter. Go through your children’s toys and find a way to dispose of those they’ve outgrown. Remove clothes and shoes you don’t need and make a trip to your local thrift shop.

One benefit of decluttering is that a cleaner space makes the rooms in your house seem larger. In turn, this increases the appeal of your house compared to similar-sized homes. According to Houzz.com, to declutter your home, you should get rid of anything you have not used in over one year, create organized storage and remove furniture that does not fit in with your overall decor.

Depersonalize
When you are preparing your house to sell, keep in mind that your ultimate goal is to find someone else to move in. Potential buyers must be able to picture their family living in your house. To help them visualize, it’s a good idea to remove any large family photographs from the walls. The same goes for your kids’ artwork or any other personal decorative touches that might distract would-be homebuyers from considering your house. Although this may be difficult for you, take consolation in the fact that you are getting a head start on your packing.

Curb appeal
When initially attracting potential buyers, curb appeal is extremely important. Check the exterior of your home for chips, cracks or loose shutters; it might be worth hiring a contractor to power-clean or do maintenance on your exterior if the problems are widespread. To improve your home’s exterior appearance, spend some time trimming hedges and trees, and always make sure the walkways are tidy and clear of debris. Place planters around the front door of your house to brighten the entryway. You want buyers compelled to come into your home and not repelled to go to the neighbors.

Repairs
Aside from cosmetic upgrades, which you will want to keep to a minimum, and decluttering, you will very likely need to make some actual repairs. Any issue that may become a problem in a home inspection should be corrected in advance. This may include fixing leaky faucets, broken garbage disposals or old electrical outlets that may short out.

When preparing your house to sell, try to view your living space as an outsider would see it. Think about the way your home smells and sounds, as well. Does the heater rattle when it kicks on? Is there a musty smell in your basement? Anything you can do to make your home shine and sparkle will help attract buyers and lead to a successful home sale.

Networking your home to All Buyers in Atlanta is the ultimate goal of most sellers. Yet, that is not what happens in most real estate relationships between an agent that you hire because they have not recognized the importance of all buyers.

The difference is that there are 4 types of buyers in the marketplace. 2 types like to search with agents to find homes and 2 types avoid agents. We advertise to all buyers by making all of these types of buyers equally important in our strategy.

The good news is that it is also easy and we do it over and over every day.

However, there are many more important sources for advertising and also methods of advertising to consider because ultimately what you want is for their buyers to know about your property as they are the ones that can buy.

So, we do a few things differently:

  1. We recognize that there are 4 types of buyers out there, 2 that search with agents and 2 that search on their own and hesitate to hire an agent to help them find homes and that percentage of people is rising because of the internet.
  2. We also recognize that when you list your home, you intend for all buyers near that price range to learn that you have a house for sale. But the truth is that most agents don’t recognize this and your property is missing your real buyer pool by $100.00 when they price your home the old way of doing advertising.
  3. We advertise is as many venues as possible and don’t mind paying on your behalf to do it as well as we give you optional ways to market yourself and some are free.
  4. We are a full brokerage with over 20 exclusive buyer agents. We work with over 2,000 buyers at any given time. Our buyers tell us where they want to go and we take them there.

If you have other questions, we’re positive that we know the answer, we just need you to ask it! We’ve listed over 20,000 seller’s homes in the last 15 years. Write us now with your questions.

With our seller’s program, you are able to accept offers for Rent, Lease Purchase or Sell your home.

Adding lease purchase to the listing is no charge and we teach you what we would do if it was our home and we were considering a lease purchase.

You can advertise a rental any way you choose including paying an additional $250.00 to be listed in the FMLS after you have a listing with us. The rental listing lasts for 6 months and then it is only $100.00 to re-list it for an additional 6 months.

IMPORTANT Duffy Realty’s listing program lasts until sold. So, if you rent your home or lease purchase it, when the rent or moves out, you relist with Duffy Realty at no charge.

At Duffy Realty, you are not responsible for Showing Your Own Property, unless you want to do some extra marketing to bring in unrepresented buyers. If you find an unrepresented buyer and they make an offer to buy your home, you save the buyer’s agent commission. We still write and negotiate the contract on your behalf.

We have a full time, serious, buyer team of over 80 agents at Duffy Realty that shows and sells all properties in Atlanta. These agents are on quota at Duffy Realty so they must have the skills to sell buyers. As a matter of fact, we work with over 2,000 buyers at a time in our Cash At Closing program.

When someone calls about your home, we take the call and tell the buyer about your property.

The buyers that we have participating in our Cash At Closing program, search the internet and tell us what they want to see.

The Cash At Closing program will be applicable to your home as well when you are listed with Duffy. The program is based on the buyer eliminating houses that they do not want to see and thus us sharing our commission with them because we did not have to do the work of finding the homes.

Duffy has given buyers over $3,000,000.00 in Cash At Closing.

If you need to do a Short Sale, we can help. Click here to go to our Short Sale Division.

Duffy Realty’s motto is to Avoid Client Confusion. Unfortunately, real estate agents have presented selling real estate to be harder than it is.

However, selling your property is a simple process:

  1. Make your home a product. This is easy and requires the simple process of decluttering, cleaning and curb appeal. We can guide you through this, do it for you or you can choose to not do any of this and just put your product on the market. The amount that you do and when you do it is your choice.
  2. Advertise that your home is for sale via internet portals, the multiple listing services and a signage.
  3. Address buyer’s questions via a Seller’s Disclosure, marketing materials, and verbal answers.
  4. Review an offer for acceptable terms and if the terms are not acceptable, revise the terms to suit you seeking approval of the buyer.
  5. Attend a closing directed by a closing attorney.

We assist and advise you through all of this process. None of this process is different whether you are listed with us or another agent.

With our experience of listing over 20,000+ properties in 15+ years, we have noticed some reasons that listings Expire:

  1. The photographs didn’t tell the story of the home.
  2. Access to the house is unclear or difficult.
  3. Selling commission to buyer’s agent is too low for their standards.
  4. The listing price does not yield the highest amount of buyers.
  5. The listing is not complete so the yields for buyers is limited.
  6. The home had repeat visitors that were not solicited by the agent with a reverse offer from the seller. Reverse offers are something that we do for our clients that we have never heard of another company doing. Ask us about this.
  7. The seller did not oversee the listing because they resented the fact that they were paying a high commission.
  8. The seller gave up during the process.
  9. The seller and agent did not address objections in the listing upfront.
  10. There is a mention of pets in the listing. i.e. Please don’t let the 3 cats out – Big dogs won’t bite etc…
  11. There are negative attributes of the home listed on the listing i.e. Sloped Yard, Synthetic Stucco…

We have many tools that we have recognized are important for our clients that are selling a unique property.

We define unique as any home that needs to be paid for something special, this includes:

  1. A view;
  2. A lot;
  3. A rehab job or finish job such as a basement;
  4. Upgrades;
  5. A lifestyle, and
  6. Frankly, anything that an owner finds special about the property that they want to relay to excite a buyer enough to get the buyer to pay the price the owner wants.

We use the following to promote these qualities:

  1. Photography – you can order a virtual tour and display up to 50 photos with expanded views – (virtual tours are optional charges)
  2. Video – you can add additional video capabilities – (optional charge or you can do at no charge)
  3. Storytelling via additional text – (no additional charge)
  4. More advertising portals on the internet -( no additional charge)
  5. Addressing all 4 types of buyers in the marketplace, not just 2 like other models address – (no additional charge)
  6. We teach you how to keep the buyers in the house longer by addressing their concerns and fears – (no additional charge and totally optional for you to do)
  7. We can give you ideas on other places to advertise – (no additional charge and totally optional for you to do)

You are in charge of your story and can change it at any time at no charge.

Foreclosures are an eyesore anyway that you look at them, but thankfully there are far less of them in recent years.

However, the good news is that you don’t have to worry about them if you have a home that is in good condition and you can prove it. Buyers will pay you for a good home as that is their ultimate goal – buy something of value that they are qualified to buy.

Many homeowners fear the appraisal that they will get after they have had a foreclosure in their neighborhood. Appraisers search for like sales when at all possible unless they have been instructed by the buyer’s lender otherwise. So, the likelihood of you getting hit hard against an foreclosure is rare if you are not selling a foreclosure.

Here are the reasons that you should not worry about a foreclosure that is selling in your neighborhood based on my experience of selling over 20,000 homes in the last 12 years:

  1. Most foreclosures are in lousy shape and most buyers don’t have the money to fix them up once they pay their down payment and prepaid to get a loan.
  2. Foreclosures are not maintained for years and buyers can sense this.
  3. Foreclosures are sold “As Is” so it leaves a lot of uncertainty that most buyers can’t stomach.
  4. Foreclosures are sold with no records and a limited warranty deed which makes most buyers nervous.
  5. Foreclosures take a while to get an answer from the bank and close and most buyers lose interest in that process if they need to move and are on a deadline.
  6. Worse case scenario, the foreclosure will come quickly on the market and off the market.

Although all buyers start with a foreclosure purchase on their mind, most can’t stomach what it takes to buy one and move on to looking elsewhere after they get an education.

The market is desperate for good inventory. If you have something good, you owe it to yourself to put it on the market and get a buyer who appreciates what you have.

Foreclosures are an eyesore anyway that you look at them, but thankfully there are far less of them in recent years.

However, the good news is that you don’t have to worry about them if you have a home that is in good condition and you can prove it. Buyers will pay you for a good home as that is their ultimate goal – buy something of value that they are qualified to buy.

Many homeowners fear the appraisal that they will get after they have had a foreclosure in their neighborhood. Appraisers search for like sales when at all possible unless they have been instructed by the buyer’s lender otherwise. So, the likelihood of you getting hit hard against an foreclosure is rare if you are not selling a foreclosure.

Here are the reasons that you should not worry about a foreclosure that is selling in your neighborhood based on my experience of selling over 20,000 homes in the last 12 years:

  1. Most foreclosures are in lousy shape and most buyers don’t have the money to fix them up once they pay their down payment and prepaid to get a loan.
  2. Foreclosures are not maintained for years and buyers can sense this.
  3. Foreclosures are sold “As Is” so it leaves a lot of uncertainty that most buyers can’t stomach.
  4. Foreclosures are sold with no records and a limited warranty deed which makes most buyers nervous.
  5. Foreclosures take a while to get an answer from the bank and close and most buyers lose interest in that process if they need to move and are on a deadline.
  6. Worse case scenario, the foreclosure will come quickly on the market and off the market.

Although all buyers start with a foreclosure purchase on their mind, most can’t stomach what it takes to buy one and move on to looking elsewhere after they get an education.

The market is desperate for good inventory. If you have something good, you owe it to yourself to put it on the market and get a buyer who appreciates what you have.

At Duffy Realty, you don’t have to live near or in the home that you want to sell to use our program. We show and sell your property to any and all buyers who inquire about it.

We have a full time, serious buyer team of over 80 agents at Duffy Realty that shows and sells all properties in Atlanta. These agents are on quota at Duffy Realty so they must have the skills to sell buyers. As a matter of fact, we work with over 2,000 buyers at a time in our Cash At Closing program.

When someone calls about your home, we take the call and tell the buyer about your property.

The buyers that we have participating in our Cash At Closing program, search the internet and tell us what they want to see.

The Cash At Closing program will be applicable to your home as well when you are listed with Duffy. The program is based on the buyer eliminating houses that they do not want to see and thus us sharing our commission with them because we did not have to do the work of finding the homes.

Duffy has given buyers over $3,000,000.00 in Cash At Closing. The checks that we have written are on the website.

When you get an offer, we fax and email the offer during negotiations.

At closing, the attorney (if they elect to do this) can send you the closing documents by mail so you can possibly avoid coming to the closing.

By the way, over 20% of the Duffy Realty inventory of listing is vacant.

CLIENT LOVE

We love serving our clients here are just a few of our five-star reviews.

Being that I didn’t know what to do or expect being this was my first time selling a house, Duffy made it simple and understandable. My house sold and I actually paid $3,000 less than I thought at closing which will now go toward a down payment on my new house……Thanks, Duffy Realty …You’re Awesome! And I see why you’re #1.
Evelynn Slat
I am extremely pleased with Duffy and the entire experience. Wonderful, well done, congratulations to you Duffy Realty. I really haven’t calculated the money saved yet, but I know it was more than %6. For that I am grateful, the money will, of course, be invested. But all said Duffy will be an experience to be remembered. Well done, well done, Duffy thank you for all your hard work. Again, it was a fabulous experience.
James Watson
I began working with Duffy and within a week I had a contract on our house. That ended up falling through and another contract was picked up, but all the way through, Victoria was a huge help in the process. Victoria and her team were always responding to calls/voicemails and were able to help me answer any questions and get the goals accomplished. Her knowledge was a huge asset to using this team for the sale and helped me in the long run..
Laura Wise

Home buying doesn’t have to be difficult. Take action to start saving time and money, today!