What's a Transaction Coordinator in Real Estate? Weigh the Pros and Cons

By Lindsay Stefan

Posted on July 21st, 2022

What is a transaction coordinator? | Cost | What does a transaction coordinator do? | Transaction coordinator vs. real estate agent

Flat illustration of a woman working on paperwork

How is a transaction coordinator different from a real estate agent?
A transaction coordinator assists with scheduling, paperwork, important deadlines, and closing. A real estate agent also handles these tasks — plus more complex services including negotiations and marketing.

When you sell a home, you'll have to deal with the pressures of negotiating a deal — plus complex legal paperwork that varies by location.

Unless you've sold several homes yourself, you probably aren't familiar with the many legal and financial requirements. For many homeowners, this is a stressful prospect. If you miss a detail or fail to complete the paperwork properly, your deal could run into delays, financial penalties, or lawsuits. Or, the deal could simply fall apart, leaving you without a buyer.

While 90% of home sellers enlist the help of a real estate agent, some prefer less hands-on support. A transaction coordinator is a good solution for these home sellers, offering lower fees while still providing basic assistance with:

  • The escrow process
  • Closing
  • Legal paperwork
  • Communication

If you're looking for the best transaction coordinators in your area, our friends at Clever Real Estate can help. Clever offers a free service that provides expert advice and personal introductions to the best real estate professionals in your area.

If you end up deciding to work with a real estate agent, Clever can also match you with top-rated real estate experts from leading brokers including Keller Williams, RE/MAX, and Century21. Plus, Clever can help you save thousands, thanks to pre-negotiated listing fees of just 1% (a fraction of the standard 3% listing agent commission).

👋 Get started by telling Clever's licensed concierge team about your home sale!

What Is a Transaction Coordinator?

👍 Good For Sellers With…
  • Lots of past experience selling homes
  • Real estate industry experience
  • A buyer already lined up
  • Legal or marketing expertise
  • A robust personal/professional network
  • A home sale in a seller's market
👎 Bad For Sellers With…
  • Little or no experience selling homes
  • Low confidence negotiating with buyers
  • Little or no familiarity with typical contingencies or pricing strategies
  • Uncertainty about effective marketing strategies
  • A home sale in a buyer's market

A transaction coordinator (sometimes called a "TC") is a real estate professional who manages all the administrative aspects of a real estate transaction. A transaction coordinator will typically manage your home sale transaction from the time you accept an offer through closing.

Real estate agents often hire transaction coordinators to assist with paperwork — but if you don't feel you need an agent, you can hire a transaction coordinator directly.

In a nutshell, a real estate agent provides the same services as a transaction coordinator — plus marketing services and help with negotiations.

The tradeoff is that a real estate agent charges a percentage-based commission. By contrast, a transaction coordinator works for a flat fee that's generally less expensive.

Transaction coordinators are popular with “for sale by owner” (FSBO) sellers. But it’s worth noting that the majority of FSBO sellers already know the buyer, suggesting they don’t need much help with marketing or negotiations.

If you’re putting your home on the open market, you may end up with regrets about a transaction coordinator's relatively limited service offerings.

While the transaction coordinator will manage your sale after you’ve struck a deal with the buyer, you won’t have an agent to help you find a buyer or get the best possible deal.

If you're trying to decide whether you need a real estate agent or a transaction coordinator, we recommend reaching out to our friends at Clever Real Estate. Clever's team of fully licensed real estate professionals can provide expert advice — and personal introductions to the best transaction coordinators or realtors near you!

👋 Next steps: Talk to an expert!
If you're weighing your options for buying or selling a house, our friends at Clever can help! Clever's licensed concierge team is available to answer your real estate questions, or help you find the right agent for your needs.

Connect With a Real Estate Expert Today!

How Much Does a Transaction Coordinator Cost?

Transaction coordinators typically charge a flat fee. The exact cost will vary, but is usually between $350 and $500.

Because transaction coordinators don't charge a percentage-based commission, these fees are typically much lower than the cost of working with a real estate agent.

What Does a Transaction Coordinator Do?

Before an Offer

📋 Administrative Support
  • Coordinate showings and open houses.
  • Prepare listing materials, including seller's disclosures.

During Closing

📋 Administrative Support
  • Collect signatures from all involved parties.
  • Send deadline reminders to both you and the buyer.
  • File appropriate paperwork, and let you know if you're missing something.
  • Scan your contract for any inconsistencies.
  • Speak to buyers, agents and other industry professionals on your behalf.
  • Create a transaction management file with all the details in one place.
  • Send out copies of the contract to all necessary parties.
  • Follow up with agents through every step of the closing process.

🏦 Escrow
  • Open escrow.
  • Liaise between the seller, buyer, escrow, agents and various third parties.
  • Review the purchase agreement for completeness.
  • Ensure the buyer's earnest money deposit is in escrow on time.
  • Make sure the buyer's earnest money deposit is subject to forfeiture if the buyer fails to perform.
  • Audit the file prior to close of escrow to ensure all paperwork is complete.

🤝 Disclosures, Inspections, and Contingencies
  • Draft the Seller's Disclosure Packet (typically a half inch thick due to various state, local and federal laws).
  • Draft addendums.
  • Monitor deadlines during the contingency period and provide a demand notice to the buyer if timing isn't met.
  • Ensure the loan contingency removal is tracking on time.
  • Ensure the loan underwriter has the various certificates and clearances needed.
  • Obtain the contingency removal form by the contingency removal date, or serve the buyer a notice to perform.
  • Deal with the request for repair process or waivers.
  • Obtain other waivers where applicable.
  • Coordinate the final walk-through.

💰 Tax Paperwork
  • Ensure tax withholding exemptions, such as Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA), are complete.
  • Create a complete file for the client, typically in electronic format, which will help with IRS filings the following April.

After Closing

📋 Administrative Support
  • Coordinate your move-out schedule.
  • Wrap up any needed details after the sale has closed.

Transaction Coordinator vs. Real Estate Agent: Which Should You Choose?

Service
Transaction Coordinator
Real Estate Agent
Handles paperwork, including the purchase agreement


Schedules showings and open houses


Coordinates closing


Keeps track of important deadlines


Markets your property


Negotiates sale price


Negotiates contingencies


Transaction coordinators charge a flat fee and are best for sellers who don't need much support during their transaction. This typically includes sellers who have lots of past experience with real estate, or who already have a deal worked out.

Real estate agents provide more robust services, including expert guidance through tough decisions such as negotiations and pricing. However, you'll typically pay more to access this level of support.

If your primary goal is to save money on your next home sale, our friends at Clever Real Estate can help you get the best of both worlds. Clever's nationwide network of real estate agents include top-rated experts from Keller Williams, RE/MAX, and other leading brokers. You'll get the best service and pre-negotiated savings on commission.

The average Clever seller saves $9,000, just for finding a great agent through Clever's free service!

💰 Find a great real estate expert and learn how much you can save!

Recommended Reading

FAQs

What is a transaction coordinator?

A transaction coordinator (sometimes called a "TC") is a real estate professional who manages all the administrative aspects of a real estate transaction. Transaction coordinators typically charge a flat fee that's less than realtor commission — but they don't provide assistance with negotiations, marketing, or other services you'd expect from a realtor. Learn which option is best for you!

What does a transaction coordinator do?

A transaction coordinator provides assistance with the paperwork and administrative aspects of a home sale. This includes the escrow process, closing, legal paperwork, and general support for communication. While transaction coordinators charge less than a realtor, most home sellers need the full suite of services realtors provide. Weigh the pros and cons!

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Posted in Selling a House