Westport, Connecticut Moves


REALTORS® - Beyond Buying and Selling

If you asked most people for a quick description of what REALTORS® do, they would probably say, show homes and put in offers, for buyers  and list homes, and present offers, for sellers.  Of course, we know there's a lot more to managing real estate transactions.                        

As REALTORS®, our responsibilities to our buyers include:        

Searching for appropriate properties, that fit their needs - "We don't want a large house, but in addition to the bedrooms, we want space for a home gym and we each need a separate office.  A media room would be nice, too"

Arranging appointments to see those homes - We don't want to kill our weekend, so do you think the homeowners would mind if we saw the house at 9A.M.?

Researching the history of the listing - "We didn't realize that this is the 3rd listing number for that house, in the past 2 years.  We thought it was a new listing."

Negotiating the offer - "We know our offer is low, but we'd also like a $10,000 credit towards painting, because their colors don't match our furniture."

In addition, the REALTORS® manage all the details of the transaction, from filing the correct paperwork, to making sure deadlines are met for inspections and mortgage contingencies and generally making sure all the steps proceed smoothly. 

for saleFor our sellers, our responsibilities include preparing Comparative Market Analyses (CMA's), to help determine the correct listing price, providing advice for staging the home, creating marketing materials and marketing plans to publicize the listings, arranging for the public and real estate community to see the listings, presenting and negotiating offers and also making sure paper work, deadlines, and contingencies are met.  

BUT...this isn't about what REALTORS® do, to guarantee smooth RE transactions.  It's about the value the real estate professional brings to their client base, when they aren't working on a specific deal. REALTORS® are continuously learning.  At a minimum, they are required to take a specified number of continuing education credits, to maintain their licenses.  Those classes are supplemented with Broker training sessions, designation courses and involvement in forums, such as AR.  Many make a concerted effort to stay on top of changing building codes, regulations and legislation that impact real estate, within their particular communities.

To that end, in a few weeks, REALTORS® from across the state of Connecticut,, are preparing to meet in Hartford, at the 24th REALTORS® at the Capitol event.  Attendees will be briefed on upcoming bills, coming before the legislature, that impact the state's real estate markets.  They will also have an opportunity to meet with their community's State Senators and Representatives, and express their opinions and ask questions.

This year's agenda is especially critical.  In 2003, to ease a budget deficit, CT put in place a temporary increase to the municipal conveyance tax.  The increase doubled the tax, in most towns and tripled it, in 18 others.  TheCapitol dome tax was meant to expire, at the end of the year.  As with anyone who has gotten used to having more money to spend, the municipalities didn't want to lose the additional revenue and in 2004 the "Sunset Tax" was extended for another year.  Since then two more extensions have been enacted, the latest due to end, this June.  If the tax is not allowed to "Sunset", this year, it will become permanent.

In a year, when many homeowners are being forced to sell their homes, the added burden of a larger conveyance tax seems especially burdensome.  It will be  REALTORS®, fighting for these home sellers. 


Marilyn Katz

      Marilyn Katz

    Berkshire Hathaway Homes Services New England Properties    
  Servings Westport, CT
  and the surrounding communities  

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Copyright © 2013 Marilyn Katz, All Rights Reserved

Comment balloon 15 commentsMarilyn Katz • March 01 2008 06:28PM


Many consumers think realtors do little to earn their commission, that they do little to provide an actual benefit to them.  Now is the time to step up our customer service to our clients.
Posted by Russ Ravary ~ Metro Detroit Realtor call (248) 310-6239, Michigan homes for sale ~ yesmyrealtor@gmail.com (Real Estate One) over 10 years ago
I think if you ask me what I do, it is I counsel people to help them make good choices. It seems like I do more and more of that anymore.
Posted by Dennis Swartz, MBA, GRI...experience counts! (Full Circle Property Management) over 10 years ago
We do so much for our communities.  In Maryland we lobbied for the state not to tax services and had a big impact on it not passing.  Just one of many ways REALTORS are active in our communities.
Posted by Scott Guay, Associate Broker. Ocean City and Ocean Pines MD (Berkshire Hathaway Home Services PenFed Realty) over 10 years ago
Why then do I have SO many people come up to me and say they want to be Realtors because they LOVE to look at homes?  :)
Posted by Chris Tesch, College Station, Texas Real Estate (RE/MAX Bryan-College Station) over 10 years ago

Russ-  With so many people belittling what we do, I guess it's up to us to set them straight

Dennis- In order to help them make the best deal, a lot of counseling is in order

Scott- Our lobbying, in the past, against the increased conveyance tax, is what has kept it from becoming permanent, already.  Wish us luck, for this year.

Chris- LOL. I had one of my seller's say that to me, today.

Posted by Marilyn Katz, ABR, e-PRO - WestportCTProperties.com (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago
I get so tired of hearing how much money we make to do so little.  There is no explaining it away to those who ask.
Posted by Latonia Parks, Certified Military Relocation Expert (Top Bragg Realty, Fayetteville NC, Home of the 82d ABN DIV) over 10 years ago
It is always good to mention what it takes to get the business.  We are all very happy to help in any case.  I still pick up and drive clients to the airport each time they arrive here on Maui.
Posted by Gary Bland R (S) E-Pro, ABR (Hawaii Life Real Estate Brokers) over 10 years ago

Well stated Marilyn. We need to continue to be the educators to the public not only by telling them what we do but by showing them what we do.

That's the greatest reason why we work so hard for repeat business and clients for life! So we don't have to be pounding the pavement all the time for NEW business.

Our general worth according to the public and surveys by the NAR consistently show us toward to bottome half although it's up greatly in the last 8 years from the bottome 1/5th. 

If we plan our work and work our plan; it usually all works out and our customers are quite satisfied, at least that's what I've found in my 10 years in the business.

As for the taxing situation, ha, ha!  You'll need to make a strong and loud grassroots push for that not to become permanent.  Giving politicians any more of our money is outrageous and they can NOT contain their spending of OUR taxes.

As a former Jersey boy and Northeasterner; I understand the OVER taxation that is taking place.

Hey, not state income taxes here. Property taxes just reduced and working on even greater property tax reductions. Great weather, beaches, golfing and fishing.  Come on down!

 Have a great weekend and enjoyed your post!

Posted by Owen Zweiback (Realty World Florida) over 10 years ago

Marilyn -
Thanks for putting in black and white what we do to prepare our customers for buying or selling and then what we do for them to make the process go smoothly.
I must admit, tho, I still love looking at houses!  :-)

Posted by Nancy Brenner, Roswell Georgia Real Estate Agent (Referral Associates of Georgia, Inc.) over 10 years ago

Latonia- I especially love when they say "you mean you don't get to keep the whole commission?"

Gary- Some people will never realize that full service agents, really are Full Service.  At least our clients get to experience the difference

Owen- It was pretty cold up here, this week.  You make it sound awfully tempting.


Posted by Marilyn Katz, ABR, e-PRO - WestportCTProperties.com (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago
Nancy- I also like looking at houses.  Although I'm not a great fan of all the McMansions in my area, I love seeing the ones that are decorated...until I come home and look around....then I go Yuch!
Posted by Marilyn Katz, ABR, e-PRO - WestportCTProperties.com (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago
Good post - The sellers in the towns that are impacted the most by the short sales and foreclosures are also the towns with the higher conveyance taxes.  What a great state we live in.  Keep up the good work in Hartford.  Hope the legislators see the light.
Posted by Philip Turner, Mortgage Banker Since 1980 (MCCUE MORTGAGE COMPANY) over 10 years ago
Philip-  There is a proposal put forward by State Senator John McKinney.  The proposal would allow the tax to sunset as planned but give local governments the autonomy to implement local conveyance tax programs if they should wish.  While it's not a great answer, since as you point out, the towns where the sellers are most greatly impacted, will probably be the first towns to enact a conveyance tax.  On the other hand, I would rather see the state conveyance tax allowed to sunset instead of becoming permanent.  After which, the power of the voters can fight the local battles.
Posted by Marilyn Katz, ABR, e-PRO - WestportCTProperties.com (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago

Marilyn, I just posted on the Municipal Conveyance Tax on my blog, http://activerain.com/blogsview/418506/Municipal-Conveyance-Tax-Connecticut

Jon Sigler signature



Posted by Jon Sigler, South Windsor Homes for Sale 860-306-8029 (Keller Williams - Greater Hartford) over 10 years ago
Jon- Nice job on the blog.  Hope you can make it to Hartford.
Posted by Marilyn Katz, ABR, e-PRO - WestportCTProperties.com (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 10 years ago