How Do Edmonton Realtors Earn their Commissions?
In the life of a real estate agent, there is much more than showing homes, meeting with potential buyers and sellers and receiving a commission. There is plenty that happens behind the scenes. Being a REALTOR® is extremely time-consuming.
If you have ever tried to buy or sell a house on your own, you may have an idea of how hard real estate agents work. Imagine if you were selling more than one house at a time. A good Edmonton real estate agent will make the process of buying or selling a home flow smoothly, leaving the impression that their job is fairly simple. The fact is, this is not at all what really happens. If you have spent social time with a REALTOR®, you may understand how difficult their job actually is.
There are definitely REALTORS® out there who cut corners, do not take care of their clients well, and they should not define or be in our industry. The real estate industry is also loaded with competent professionals with whom I am proud to work with.
Below is a list of common activities REALTORS® perform on a daily basis:
Schedule Property Showings
Scheduling showings require contacting the listing agent who will inform their seller they have a showing in order for the seller to vacate the premises prior to the availability of the buyer and the buyers real estate agent. It also gives the showing agent an opportunity to find out any relevant information related to the property. All showings must be time blocked which most agents have down to an art form, so we are not early or running behind with our buyers.
Schedule and Prep For Listing Appointments
Once a listing appoint has been scheduled, REALTORS® work behind the scene gathering all pertinent information about the property including the property history, information about the community, current real estate statistics, establish the absorption rate, acquire the title of the property which will show applicable encumbrances such as easements, liens, or covenants, and confirm the registered owners, and comprise a comparative market analysis. The agent will pre-fill paperwork, double-checking everything is correct in order to save time while on the listing appointment. The agent will gather all necessary real estates tools such as yard signs, the CMA and key boxes.
A REALTOR® usually attends the property inspections with or in place of the agents' buyer, unless agreed upon by the seller. A property inspection normally takes a few hours. In the event there are any concerns with the inspection, it can take several hours to days to come to an agreement that both the buyer and the seller are comfortable with prior to removing and contingencies are conditions.
Delivery of Deposits
Once an offer has been agreed upon, time is crucial in the deliverance of the deposit. A late deposit can result in the agreement becoming voided and the buyer losing their dream home.
REALTORS® are held by a high code of conduct and ethics and no matter how much you may disagree with the opposing REALTORS®, negotiations must be dealt with in a professional manner while working in the best interest of the client. There is much more to offer and counter-offer negotiations than just the price of a property. Negotiations also include terms, possession, conditions and sometimes contingencies. Parties involved in the negotiations can also include lawyers, mom and dad, someone with power of attorney on behalf of a client or the "handyman special" uncle.
REALTORS® have trail and trails of paperwork. Each change on an agreement, amendment or addendum must be documented and kept for at least six years. Agents must ensure everyone involved in the transaction has a copy of each document change including the buyer, the seller, both real estate agents, the financial institution, both real estate offices, both lawyers representing the buyer and seller.
Follow-Ups & Inquiries
A good real estate agent will follow up on email, texts and missed calls in a timely manner. REALTORS® can easily receive dozens of emails every day and it is so important not to get sidetracked with the unnecessary emails which can gobble up an agents valuable time.
Closings require toe follow-ups with lawyers to ensure they have all the necessary documents including any recent amendments, walk-through with builders and buyers prior to the closing date and making arrangements for keys once the title has been transferred. And of course,e re-arranging the real estate agents schedule to accommodate the meeting time with the buyer.
Other Related Services
Meet up with other real estate affiliates which help listed properties sell such as a professional photographer, mandatory measuring company employees, home stagers, putting up signage, open houses, or helping a client get their property ready to be shown. Other meetings may including attending financial institutions with a client if needed, property inspections, verify completion of repairs, and other closing related meetings.
After scheduling showings, a real estate agent needs to accommodate the time set aside to show their buyer the homes without them feeling rushed. This may be one or two properties or may consist of a complete day or a few days such as a house hunting trip - HHT.
Attend Listing Appointments
A professional REALTORS® attends all listing appointments as though it is a job interview because that is exactly what it is. The seller is interviewing the real estate agent and the agent is interviewing the seller. Prior to the listing appointment, an agent should be prepared for any questions or concerns a seller may have as well as have all necessary tools needed, should a seller be in a position to list the property. Each listing appointments should take an hour or two - sometimes more depending on how much information is presented to the seller or how many concerns they may have.
Keeping Clients Updated
This can include and newly listed homes which may be a hot commodity and must be shown immediately to sitting down at the computer for a few hours to perform a new market analysis and research back office syndication sites to forward to clients.
More phone calls
On any given day, a good real estate agent will be on the phone to other agents looking for property specific feedback on their listings, updating clients, addressing any on-going concerns, dealing with offers, mortgage brokers, real property report companies, condominium management companies, dispute low property appraisals and other real estate activities.
Maintain Required Continuing Education
Yes. Edmonton real estate agents are still required to maintain and continue education which is mandated by the real estate council of Alberta. The cost of maintaining a real estate licence and updating an agents education criteria is the responsibility of each REALTOR® and not the real estate brokerage.
Marketing and Property Syndication
If you are lucky enough to find a real estate agent in Edmonton who is an e-pro and is familiar with search engine optimization, they will spend several hours syndicating your home through various search engines and websites to ensure your property reaches the first page of google.
Attend Real Estate Conferences
There are dozens of real estate conferences annually and attending these help your REALTOR® stay up to date on the latest technology, real estate systems, and tools to help them with time management and gaining an advantage over their peers.
Maintain Active Social Media Profiles
Although social media and blogging play a key factor in the life of a real estate agent, if the only thing you see on an agents site is personal posts - you might wonder if they are actively doing any real estate. Many agents will hire this out to maintain an internet presence.
Networking with Edmonton Home Builders
There are several different home builders in Edmonton and this is a great way for real estate agents to keep up-to-date with home demand trends, especially in our current real estate market. Recently many Edmonton home builders have implemented garden suites that offer new home buyers a great way to pay off their mortgage quicker.
Stay in Touch with Past Clients
If your REALTOR® stays in touch with you on a regular basis, you have a great real estate agent. With so many things to do, it is hard to find time to stay in touch with all of our clients!
Several people take education and start a career in real estate under the assumption that it is easy money. In reality, real estate agents are in a brutal time consuming, competitive business. The net commissions are not enough to keep people in the business, in fact, most people get out of real estate because they cannot afford to be in it. REALTORS® who survive to do so because they have a passion for the real estate business, and enjoy helping people make their real estate dreams a reality. It’s a great business to be in, but it’s NOT EASY!
Riverbend Edmonton - A Favorite Place to Live
Riverbend is one of the best and favorite places to live in southwest Edmonton. It consists of nine communities. The new part of Riverbend is located on the east side of Terwillegar Drive and includes the communities of Bulyea Heights, Carter Crest, Falconer Heights, Henderson Estates, and Ogilvie Ridge. Old Riverbend is located on the west side of Terwillegar Drive and includes the communities of Brander Gardens, Brookside, Ramsay Heights, and Rhatigan Ridge.
Riverbend is one of the best places to live in southwest Edmonton surrounded by mother nature. It is divided into two parts - Old Riverbend on the west and new Riverbend on the east. Riverbend is located off of Terwillegar drive a few minutes from the University of Alberta.
House prices range from move-up to luxury home prices. Unlike any other district in the city, Riverbend offers its homeowners plenty of mother nature's natural scenic beauty with community walking paths and river valley access all within walking distance. Old Riverbend is well known for the popular footbridge which runs across the river to Edmonton West via walking paths. Learn more about each Riverbend community below.
Rhatigan Ridge was first subdivided in 1980 with various house styles from large luxury homes on spacious lots, especially near the edges of the river valley to a range of more modest executive-style houses. Rhatigan Ridge encompasses the Riverbend community league beside St. Mary Catholic School and features a high point of land with panoramic views south of Riverbend Road. Rhatigan Ridge was named after Thomas Rhatigan, a farmer who was famous for the quality of his wheat and oats and was proclaimed World Oat King at the Royal Winter Fair three times.
Brander Gardens offers more deserve homeownership with plenty of townhouses and apartment condominiums to choose from. When originally built, the majority of these condos were focused on the upper-class and elite. Located in the western portion of Brander Gardens are some of Edmonton's most magnificent properties, originally called Glamorgan. Homeowners here are treated with the proximity to the Fort Edmonton Walking trails and Footbridge which crosses to the Wolf Willow Ravine. Brander Gardens was named in honor of George Brander, who established a peony garden in the Bonnie Doon until the 1940s.
Brookside, nestled away from the rest of Riverbend bounded by Whitemud Creek Ravine North with scenic views of our Downtown. Most houses in Brookside are executive-style homes constructed in the 1970s with above-average-sized lots and mature landscaping. Brookside homeowners enjoy the natural woodland habitat, skiing at the Snow Valley Ski Club and Rainbow Valley Park, access to river valley park trails, and other recreational facilities.
Ramsay Heights is Riverbend's oldest community located in a prime real estate location and features a mix of housing equally split between single-family houses and condominiums. Ramsay Heights offers a high elevation vantage point with panoramic views of Edmonton. A large portion of the detached houses in Ramsay Heights runs along the river Valley on 154 Street and Whitemud Road. There are also a few luxury houses located in the original Glamorgan subdivision adjacent to the river valley. Ramsay Heights was named for Walter Ramsay, a principal at McKay Avenue and Queen Avenue School, then became the cities first commercial florist.
Bulyea Heights offers more walking trails than any other Riverbend community and with the presence of the Whitemud Creek Ravine, which runs the eastern length of Bulyea Heights, is the most striking community. Almost every house in Bulyea Heights is owner-occupied with several of these homes touching the edges of the ravines with more walking trails, natural paths for hiking, and run-off streams from the North Saskatchewan River. Bulyea Heights was named after George Hedley Vicars Bulyea, the first Lieutenant-Governor of Alberta.
Carter Crest is a smaller upper-class Riverbend community that features a combination of single-detached housing, construction prior to the 1990s. There are only a few roads in this community that swirl and curve to limit the negative effects of traffic, maximize land space, and allows its homeowners bigger lots. Carter Crest is within walking distance to the Terwillegar Recreation Center and is named after Robert I. Carter, a Canadian government agent who advised Americans on their immigration prospects in Canada.
Falconer Heights is one of the few Riverbend communities which offer several amenities including a medical center, a library, fast food restaurants, banks, and more located in Riverbend Square. This portion of Riverbend is popular with the aging community and features a fantastic retirement community. There is no school site located within Falconer Heights, but there is a large future school/park site adjacent to Henderson Estates. It was named after James F. Falconer, who was involved in the formation of the Edmonton Names Advisory Committee in the mid-1950s.
The Henderson Estates is nestled between Old Riverbend and Haddow in Terwillegar Heights bounded by the River Valley which runs the length of the community, providing homeowners with excellent access to our greatest natural asset. Due to the natural beauty and breath-taking views, many of these Henderson Estates properties will run into the multi-million dollar price range. Henderson Estates is named after Thomas Henderson, a homesteader in the Riverbend area in the late 19th century who imported Italian honey bees to his farm.
When originally built, Ogilvie Ridge was to be a private, elite, gated community until the city decided, Edmonton against any gated communities. It is bordered by Bulyea Heights, Whitemud Creek ravine, and west by Rabbit Hill. Ogilvie Ridge features a natural topography with an integration of the North Saskatchewan River Valley ravine system defining this community. Ogilvie Ridge was named after James H. Ogilvie, a politician, a lawyer, and a veteran of World War I.
Questions to Ask a Buyers Real Estate Agent
Below is a great question list for all Edmonton new home buyers. Purchasing a home is one of the largest investments you will make in your lifetime. Choose your REALTOR carefully. Don't be afraid to ask questions.
What type of properties do you mostly sell?
Purchasing a single-family detached house is different from buying a condominium, new builds or luxury properties. It is important that the Edmonton Real Estate Agent you choose has in-depth knowledge of the type of property you are planning on purchasing.
What is your negotiation style and experience in multiple offer situations?
Even in a buyers market, you may be in a multiple offer situation and great negotiating agents have personalized techniques for winning bidding wars. Some agents can be too aggressive and will lose due to their unlikeability, other agents can be too passive. Choose a real estate agent who is creative and on your side.
How many homes did you sell last year?
This is a very important question. The average real estate agent in Edmonton sells about 8 properties a year. Some agents will sell over 100 properties per year. If you want a REALTOR® who will spend time with you, is knowledgeable and experience, choosing a real estate agent who sells 25-50 homes a year is your best bet.
Do you have other professionals you work with on a regular basis?
Again, another very important question. Agents have relationships with other real estate providers and depending on how this question is answered, it will give you an insight on how long they have been in real estate, but more importantly on how they conduct their business.
Are you a full-time real estate agent?
Not all Real Estate Agents are full-time REALTORS®. You don’t want someone doing this part-time or as a hobby. Looking at properties for fun is not the same as having fun when looking at homes. When viewing homes, great Edmonton real estate agents will point out the flaws of each home and they all have them, not commenting on how pretty the bedroom is set up. All REMAX Realtors® are full-time agents.
Do you normally work in my price range?
Most Edmonton real estate agents work a wide range of prices, but if they usually help home buyers purchase million-dollar homes, you might not be a top priority. Similarly, if you want to purchase new build homes and they normally work on older properties, the agent may not have the right connections for Edmonton home builders.
Will I be required to sign a buyers brokerage agreement?
If any Edmonton Real Estate Agents answers "No", find another REALTOR®. The Canadian Real Estate of Alberta has mandated to work with all residential buyers under an agreement. There are 2 types of agreements - Exclusive & Non-Exclusive.
Do I have to work with your recommended service providers?
If the agents say “yes”, it’s illegal. Find another REALTOR®. Good real estate agents in Edmonton should have solid recommendations for other service providers, but you should never feel pressured to use their recommendation. A good agent doesn’t do everything on their own. They have a team of other professionals including mortgage brokers, home inspector, contractors, Conveyancers, real estate lawyers, etc.
Can I review all documents before I sign them?
A good real estate agent will take the time to explain the documents and provide you with ample time to review important documents. Never feel pressured into signing. Real Estate Contracts are a binding agreement and it is important you understand them thoroughly prior to signing.
Do you use e-signature or DocuSign?
An e-signature is an electronic signature and gives you an indication of how internet-savvy the real estate agent is. the electronic signature also eliminates the need to print, fax, scan, and ship documents and are time documented. During this conversation, your agent will also mention auto-prospecting, which is a system to keep you updated the moment a new home that meets your criteria arrives on the Edmonton or surrounding area market.
How long have you been a licensed real estate agent?
This question is one that cannot be missed. Experience in the real estate industry is important. The longer a real estate agent has been selling real estate, the more transactions they have likely completed.
Do you attend the inspections?
Again - a very important question. (especially with new homes). When a concern arises during your home inspection, your agent will be there, as a professional working in your best interest, to ask the inspector the right questions to help you make an informed decision about the property.