When it came time to list their five-bedroom, three-bath
home with a real estate agent -- and agree on the commission they'd pay -- Nancy and Rick Razzano of Wayne, Ill. got a surprise.
"The agent told us that the commission was 5 percent to 7 percent, and that we should pick it," recalls Nancy. "She seemed to be very ethical and honest, and she was very up front that if we picked a 5 percent commission, it wouldn't make any difference in how she worked to sell our home."
Yet the couple didn't automatically opt for the lowest amount on the scale. Instead, they asked smart questions so they could better understand the commission structure and its potential impact on their deal. "We talked about how the commission affects your ability to sell the house," says Rick.