Union Plus
Consumer Tips

Why should you use a real estate agent?

When considering whether or not to use a real estate agent for your home buying needs, consider these important factors before finalizing your decision.

Why should you use a real estate agent?

If you’re extra budget conscious, you might be thinking about selling your home on your own. Before you make a final decision on whether you will use a real estate agent or not – you should consider a few things first.


When you crunch the numbers, remember that you can always save money by not using a real estate agent on your end – but if a buyer comes in with an agent – you will be obligated to pay their commission. So, for instance a typical agent will require a 3% commission – so if you don’t use an agent, but your buyers have an agent, you would save 3% or 6% if they don’t have an agent. So, when you’re considering the cost of using a listing agent – keep in mind that (conservatively) it will be about 3% of the total purchase price.


Fundamentally, you could probably sell your house without a real estate agent easily in a seller’s market when the conditions are perfect, without much effort. But, like most situations – there are usually challenges to overcome. Not to mention, if you work full-time – you have to be realistic about how much time selling your home could take away from your work or family. Marketing and showing your home alone are huge time-sucks, which can be avoided for a 3-6% commission. Do the math and figure out what your time is worth – then calculate how many hours you might need to put against selling your home in order to justify the use of an agent.


If you decide to go the FSBO route, take into account the extra things you might have to pay for:

  • MLS listing fees
  • Professional pictures or video of your home
  • Home sale and open house signs
  • Lawyer fees to review contracts
  • Time off for home showings
  • Staging advice
  • Storage fees (for staging)
  • Home buying agent commission fees
  • Extra incentives for buying agents


If you live in a small or big town – agents talk. This is one of the benefits of using an agent – they will use all of their networks, referral groups, Web tools and connections in order to market your home. Agents have access to the MLS, which is the number one home sale site. They also have connections with ancillary service providers that could market your home better including – photographers, home stagers, storage providers, etc.

If you decide you’re ready to buy or sell a home, use a real estate agent approved by SIRVA to help you every step of the way. You can get $500 for every $100,000 in home value.*

Real Estate Rewards

Earn cash back on your home sale or purchase

Learn more

*To qualify for cash back reward (in cash back states), you must use a SIRVA-referred real estate agent. Program designed as a referral service to provide you the opportunity to select a real estate agent to meet your needs. You must evaluate the brokers, agents and their services and make selections and decisions based upon your best judgment, interest, priorities and concerns. Call 800-228-3097 or visit myrewards.sirvahomebenefits.com/UnionPlus for important program details and state restrictions.

SIRVA is an independent provider of services. Union Plus is not affiliated with SIRVA and does not manage SIRVA or its programs. SIRVA is paying Union Plus for advertising services including dissemination of information about SIRVA and its programs to participating unions and their members as well as participation in Union Plus events and programs. No referral, recommendation, service representation or exclusivity requirement is intended by the Union Plus’s mention or dissemination of the SIRVA name and delivery of this information to participating union members. It is important that you evaluate the information provided and make decisions based upon your own best interest, priorities, and concerns. Certain state restrictions apply to the real estate cash back program.