Updated: Nov 7
My coverage map is more expansive for sellers than for buyers.
Below you'll find my coverage map for buyers, arranged by price of home, with some exceptions that I'll get into.
Below you'll find my coverage map for Sellers, arranged by price of home, with some exceptions that I'll get into.
The orange items above in 5 locations are the base of operations for the 5 MLS I pay for access to on an ongoing basis. Most agents only have access to 1 or 2, and it's critical that agents have access to & will use the primary MLS of a property's area if you are a listing a property with the agent or if you are relying on a buyer's agent for a feed of potential properties. When listing a home, the more MLS you are on, the better your coverage will be and the greater the number of agents and buyers you will reach.
The white spaces above are areas where I typically don't have optimal MLS coverage.
The MLS coverage map above is based on homes:
A. With a minimum 2% commission for those buyers I represent
B. With a 3% commission for the listing firm, with whatever desired amount for the buying firm in addition to that, but I recommend another 3%.
Locations served include Chesapeake, Charles City, Chesterfield, Gloucester, Hampton, Henrico, Isle of Wight, James City County, King William, Mathews, Middlesex, Newport News, New Kent, Norfolk, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Prince George, Richmond, Southampton, Smithfield, Suffolk, Surry, Sussex, Toano, Virginia Beach, Williamsburg, York County, and beyond!
Zipcodes served include 23011, 23030, 23168, 23185, 23187, 23188, 23304, 23314, 23320, 23321, 23323, 23324, 23325, 23432, 23432, 23434, 23435, 23436, 23451, 23452, 23453, 23454, 23455, 23456, 23459, 23460, 23461, 23462, 23464, 23487, 23503, 23504, 23508, 23509, 23513, 23518, 23523, 23551, 23601, 23602, 23603, 23604, 23605, 23607, 23608, 23651, 23661, 23662, 23663, 23664, 23665, 23666, 23669, 23690, 23691, 23692, 23693, 23696, 23701, 23702, 23703, 23704, 23707, 23708, 23709, 23839, 23846, 23881, 23883, 23899, & more!
Exceptions to the above:
Land & Commercial Commissions
Land commissions are typically higher than for single family residential, as are commercial commissions. In those cases, when those higher commissions are present, it lowers the price point minimums. For instance, I could help a buyer in Carrollton (within the $150k+ tier) purchasing something for $150k with a 2% minimum commission, listing another property for sale for $150k (3% listing firm commission, not including the buyer firm commission), and I could help that same person selling a 5% listing firm commission (not including the buyer firm commission side) commercial property for $90k.
Some buyers and sellers would really prefer to use me, even if it means paying a higher amount than my typical commission if a seller or offering a minimum buyer brokerage commission higher than my typical in order to cover any difference that the seller doesn't cover.
Buyers & sellers offering more:
3% is the median seller paid commission for buyer's agents of single family homes in SE VA. While some agents charge as much as 4% minimum buyer broker commission, my typical is only 2%, but if looking in an area lower than my typical for that coverage area, "gap coverage" would start at 3% minimum commission. For instance, Someone looking to purchase a home for $175k in a $200k zone could do a minimum commission of ($175k*.03) +($200k-$175k)*.03 = $6000. If the seller offered a 3% commission, like the majority do for single family residential in our area last I checked, the buyer would cover the $750 difference out of pocket. Likewise, a seller selling in the same $200k zone at base 3% listing side commission (not including buy side commission) for a property that closes for $175k could use me and pay $6k to the listing firm at closing (& $5250 to the buying side is what I would recommend).
Avoiding a commission higher than my typical by asking me for a referral:
Rather than paying me a higher commission, most buyers and sellers would prefer to use another agent. In those cases, I am typically happy to refer them to an agent who could help to suit their needs for properties $50k and greater. Here is a form for that if you'd like a referral.
Disclosure: I have a high opinion of my own service when compared to other agents, & while I can typically find a "good" agent, typically won't be able to refer you to someone that I believe can serve your needs as good or better than I could as long as I have good MLS coverage for your area, particularly when it comes to the following areas even if I am referring you to an agent who has more experience than I do:
Gadgets/tools (physical & digital)
Detail-oriented: For instance, I'm not aware of anyone in the nation with a more thorough/comprehensive buyer property notes spreadsheet than me, & I would be very surprised if someone in SE VA had a more thorough offer spreadsheet than me. One thing I'll also sometimes go through with sellers is a detail comparison between me and other agents on identical properties listed at different times, with heightened details in many cases having very positive results on net price.
Highly educational process I go through in writing & in person on property
# of MLS available (5 as of 10/1/22)
Amount of negatives I can uncover for buyers I represent when representing buyers and for sellers I represent when representing sellers (for reference, I don't practice dual agency, so sellers can be relieved here). On at least one occasion, I pointed out more legitimate negatives than a home inspector. Since home inspector scope is limited (i.e. they may not include cosmetic items, and other potential negatives like a busy street or flood zones are beyond their scope), it's also highly beneficial to have a buyer's agent pointing out negatives. Since most sellers don't acquire a pre-listing inspection, I may be the only one to let them know some significant items that could be cost-effectively remedied at their home prior to sale.
Non-Profits Making a Difference in Topics I'm Passionate About
There have been occasions where I have showed buyers properties who were involved in non-profits that I am deeply passionate about to directly benefit the non-profit. For example, one former client was a buyer looking for a property for a home for victims of human trafficking. In some cases with non-profits, I may be willing to make exceptions to the above.
If a Buyer is Looking in Multiple Zones
If someone is looking in multiple zones, wherever they close in with me is the zone that would apply. If they are looking primarily in a covered zone, but their purchase ends up being not in a covered zone based on the closed price, they would cover the difference in commission if any applies, as detailed in "Paying a Higher Amount than My Typical Commission". Alternatively, someone could look in lower-end zones with me, and zones that would be on my higher end with another agent through a non-exclusive right to represent buyer agreement.
Buyers Seeking Less than 10 Hours of Showings Including Travel Time
If you'd like to do <10 hours of showings including my travel time in an uncovered price range area that's still covered by my MLS, you can do that for a 3% minimum commission buyer brokerage agreement (with the median amount paid by sellers being 3%).