Assist-2-Sell is a real estate franchise that advertises discounted commission rates for home sellers.
While Assist-2-Sell once ranked as one of the real estate industry’s premier discount brands, it’s suffered a steep decline over the past 15 years. As the Assist-2-Sell reviews we’ll cover illustrate, most sellers will find better value — and fewer risks — with other discount services.
For example, our friends at Clever Real Estate offer a 1% listing fee (or a flat $3,000 fee for homes under $350,000). Clever’s agent-matching process connects you with top full-service realtors in your area, ensuring you never compromise on agent quality or support. Learn more now.
- Every Assist-2-Sell office advertises discounted listing fees, but actual rates vary by location
- To take advantage of their potential savings, you may have to sacrifice service quality
- Roughly 80% of Assist-2-Sell’s offices have closed since 2007, suggesting its competitors offer a better experience and overall value
- Assist-2-Sell currently operates in around 130 locations across the U.S.
What Is Assist-2-Sell?
Along with longtime competitor Help-U-Sell, Assist-2-Sell pioneered the discount real estate brokerage model. These companies believed that if they advertised low fees, they’d attract enough customers to turn a profit despite earning less money on each sale.
Assist-2-Sell launched in 1987 with a single office. By 2007, it had 645 franchise locations across the U.S. and Canada.
However, Assist-2-Sell hemorrhaged locations following the collapse of the U.S. housing market and has struggled to compete with tech-forward discount brands like Redfin. Assist-2-Sell currently has around 130 U.S. offices — 80% less than it had in 2007.
How Does Assist-2-Sell Work?
Unlike most discount brokerages, Assist-2-Sell is a franchise. Each office is independently owned and operated, so fees and service quality vary between locations.
That said, every Assist-2-Sell office operates on a similar business model. It advertises discounted realtor commision rates, then compensates for those low fees by requiring agents to juggle more customers than the average realtor.
Put simply, it’s not 1987 anymore.
You have lots of options to save on real estate commission today, and Assist-2-Sell’s model may not provide the best value or experience. Find out which companies offer the lowest realtor fees in 2021 (and which ones do it while still providing a stellar customer experience).
How much does Assist-2-Sell cost?
Assist-2-Sell encourages franchise operators to use a flat-fee pricing structure based on the home’s listing price.
However, Assist-2-Sell fees vary between locations. Many use the flat-rate model, but others charge percentage-based commission.
As a typical example, the Assist-2-Sell office in Sykesville, MD, charges a flat listing fee that starts at $2,995 for homes up to $300,000. Above $1 million, sellers pay a 1% commission rate instead of a flat fee.
Based on this example fee structure, here’s how much you could save compared to selling with a traditional brokerage.
|Price Point||Listing Fee||Effective Rate||Potential Savings*|
Expect to offer up to 3% in buyer’s agent commission
In addition to Assist-2-Sell’s listing fee, expect to offer buyer’s agent commission. This typically costs 2.5-3% of the home’s sale price, depending on local conventions.
As the seller, you can advertise whatever buyer’s agent fee you want — or even none at all.
However, we recommend offering a rate that’s competitive in your area. This motivates realtors to show your home to buyers, which maximizes your chances of selling your home quickly and for top dollar.
Assist-2-Sell vs. Traditional Realtors
The biggest risk to working with an Assist-2-Sell agent is that they may be too busy to provide hands-on, personalized support.
Assist-2-Sell calls itself a full-service real estate brokerage. And it claims its agents provide the same level of personalized support as traditional realtors.
However, although Assist-2-Sell agents and traditional realtors may offer a similar range of services on paper, there may be significant differences in service quality.
Assist-2-Sell agents handle more customers
Like many discount brokers, Assist-2-Sell offsets its low fees by requiring agents to handle a higher volume of customers than the average realtor. Usually, these companies compensate for the extra workload in one or more of the following ways:
- Offering fewer services (e.g., no open houses or in-person support)
- Offering extra discounts to sellers who buy a home with them too
- Using a team-based model rather than giving sellers a dedicated agent
- Developing technology to complete more home-selling tasks virtually
However, Assist-2-Sell claims to provide the exact same services and customer experience as a traditional brokerage at a lower price. Most offices don’t offer built-in savings for buyers. And one look at Assist-2-Sell’s corporate website should tell you this company isn’t exactly on the cutting edge of technological innovation.
In other words, Assist-2-Sell “creates” savings purely by expecting its agents to shoulder a heavier workload than agents at other brokerages.
Overextended agents may not provide top-tier support
It would be great if your agent could handle more customers than a typical realtor without it negatively affecting your experience.
Unfortunately, as the Assist-2-Sell reviews we’ll cover below demonstrate, even the most talented agents can only handle so many clients at once before service quality starts to suffer.
Remember, even something as seemingly insignificant as missing a deadline to complete documents or submit a counteroffer could derail a potential sale.
Assist-2-Sell may struggle to attract top agents
Like most traditional brokerages, Assist-2-Sell pays its agents a portion of the commission they collect for helping customers sell or buy homes. But since Assist-2-Sell charges such low rates, it earns a lot less from every sale.
As a result, Assist-2-Sell agents have complained they have to sell twice as many homes to earn the same amount of income.
Assist-2-Sell’s advertised savings may be worth the potential tradeoffs. But it’s a good idea to consider all your options. Read reviews for the Assist-2-Sell office in your area, then interview a few realtors from other companies to compare rates, service quality, and overall value.
Want an easier way to find the top agents in your area? Clever Real Estate’s free agent-matching service is a great way to find agents and only pay a 1% commission rate!
Don’t Compromise on Service. Work With the Best Agents at a Discount.
Our friends at Clever Real Estate negotiate with top-performing agents so you don’t have to. Start saving thousands today.
Selling With Assist-2-Sell
Assist-2-Sell’s service offerings vary between locations, but the corporate office recommends that franchise operators offer the following standard listing packages.
MLS for Less
On paper, the MLS for LessTM package offers roughly the same experience as selling with a traditional brokerage — but for a much cheaper price.
As the name suggests, Assist-2-Sell will post your house on the local multiple listing service (MLS), a database where realtors advertise the properties they’re selling.
Additionally, a dedicated agent will oversee your transaction from start to finish, providing support for things like:
- Choosing a list price
- Marketing your home
- Negotiating with buyers
- Scheduling inspections and appraisals
- Closing coordination
Direct to Buyer
Direct to BuyerTM is similar to MLS for Less, with one big exception: Assist-2-Sell won’t list your home on the MLS. Instead, it will attempt to find a buyer who isn’t working with a realtor.
If they’re successful, you won’t have to offer any buyer’s agent commission, saving you an additional 2.5-3% compared to a traditional sale.
However, this approach is extremely risky. Nine out of ten buyers use a realtor, so refusing to offer buyer’s agent commission shrinks your buyer pool by as much as 90%.
And the less competition you have from buyers, the harder it will be for you to sell your home quickly and for the best price possible.
Some Assist-2-Sell offices also advertise a Paperwork Only package designed for people selling their house “for sale by owner” (FSBO).
For around $1,500-2,000, Assist-2-Sell will act as a transaction coordinator. Once you’ve found a buyer, the company will help you and the buyer draft a purchase agreement, complete legal documents, and otherwise arrange the pre-closing process.
However, this package seems expensive for what you get. The average FSBO listing sells for almost $80,000 less than agented listings, so you’re already going to be taking a financial hit. We recommend getting quotes from local real estate attorneys, who may provide the same services for less.
Buying With Assist-2-Sell
You can purchase a home with an Assist-2-Sell agent, but other discount services likely offer better value.
While Assist-2-Sell advertises steep discounts for home sellers, it does NOT offer any built-in savings for buyers. Given the service quality tradeoffs, most buyers have little incentive to use an Assist-2-Sell agent.
In contrast, many of Assist-2-Sell’s competitors offer home buyer rebates. If you qualify, you may receive a portion of the buyer’s agent commission back as a credit or cash. These rebates can help offset closing costs and other upfront expenses you face when buying a home.
Assist-2-Sell Reviews: Pros and Cons
Assist-2-Sell offers some potential advantages compared to traditional, full-priced real estate brokerages. But it’s important to weigh Assist-2-Sell’s pros and cons carefully. Only then can you decide if it’s truly your best option, or if another discount service in your area provides better overall value.
Pro: Potential realtor commission savings
The primary reason that sellers list with Assist-2-Sell is its low fees. Although pricing varies between franchise locations, a consistent theme among positive Assist-2-Sell reviews is that the potential savings are genuine.
This Zillow user said Assist-2-Sell’s flat listing fee provided excellent value, particularly since they found a high-quality agent.
Just remember that Assist-2-Sell may not offer the lowest realtor fees in your area. Take the time to explore your options! Another discount service — or even a conventional brokerage — may be a better fit for your situation.
Our friends at Clever Real Estate pre-negotiate discounted listing fees of $3,000 or 1% with full-service realtors throughout the U.S.
Clever’s free service matches you with agents in your area who have been pre-screened for excellent customer ratings. You can interview as many as you like until you find the perfect fit.
Contact Clever to find top-rated realtors in your area today!
Pro: Agents provide local, in-person support
Assist-2-Sell has more potential service quality risks than a traditional brokerage, but it may be a safer option than some of its low-cost competitors.
Some discount brokers cut costs by handling your entire sale remotely. They offer no in-person support during any stage of the sales process. They won’t even tour your house before recommending a list price!
With Assist-2-Sell, you’ll have a dedicated local realtor who oversees your entire transaction. As long as you find a high-quality agent who isn’t too overextended, you should receive full-service support throughout the process.
Con: Risky customer service model
However, a recurring theme among Assist-2-Sell complaints is subpar service quality.
Assist-2-Sell expects its agents to shoulder a heavier workload than the average realtor. This increases the risk that your agent will be too busy to give your home the attention it needs.
In general, these tradeoffs will be more noticeable with lower-quality agents. However, as many Assist-2-Sell reviews illustrate, even talented realtors may struggle to deliver stellar customer service if they’re juggling too many listings at once.
Con: Limited-service packages may offer poor value
Among Assist-2-Sell’s standard offerings, the MLS for Less package provides the best combination of savings and services. As we explained above, neither the Direct to Buyer nor Paperwork Only options seem like a great value for budget-conscious home sellers.
If maximizing your real estate commission savings is your top priority, consider using a flat-fee MLS listing service. For a few hundred bucks, these companies will list your home on the local MLS, ensuring it’s marketed to the widest pool of potential buyers.
You can take the money you would have paid Assist-2-Sell and offer a competitive buyer’s agent fee instead. This will incentivize realtors to show your home to their clients.
Assist-2-Sell Alternatives to Consider
Although listing with Assist-2-Sell may be cheaper than using a traditional realtor, it’s fees are relatively middle-of-the-pack compared to other discount brands. Depending on your situation and priorities, you may find another company in your area that offers a better combination of savings and service quality.
|Company||Average Rating*||Locations||Listing Fee||Buyer Rebates||Average Savings**|
|Assist-2-Sell||Varies by location||Select markets||$2,995-7,995*||$6,500|
|Clever||4.9 (590 reviews)||National||$3,000 or 1%||$7,375|
|Help-U-Sell||3.2 (287 reviews)||National||Varies by location||$5,875|
|Redfin||3.2 (287 reviews)||National||1.5% (min. fees vary)||$5,875|
|Redefy||4.6 (345 reviews)||CO, FL, GA, IL, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA||$3,500 (1% for homes above $1M)||$8,500|
Help-U-Sell is a real estate company that advertises flat listing fees. It was once the largest discount real estate franchise in the U.S. However, like Assist-2-Sell, Help-U-Sell has struggled to compete with newer discount brokers. Over the past 15 years, it’s lost more than 90% of its franchise locations.
Redefy is a discount brokerage that charges a flat $3,500 listing fee on homes below $1 million. This fee structure offers more potential savings than Assist-2-Sell at most price points. But upfront fees and a salaried team of agents may lead to a lackluster sales process.
While Assist-2-Sell and Help-U-Sell pioneered the discount brokerage model, Redfin brought it into the 21st century. Redfin’s 1.5% listing fee isn’t the best rate available, but it’s a lot cheaper than selling with a traditional realtor.
4. Clever Real Estate
Clever is an agent-matching service that offers big commission savings WITHOUT the service-quality risks that typically come with a discount brokerage like Assist-2-Sell.
It pre-negotiates low rates with traditional realtors throughout the U.S. With Clever, you can sell with a top-rated, full-service agent for a 1% listing fee — or $3,000 if your home sells below $350,000. Eligible buyers may also receive commission rebates.
Get Connected With Top Agents and Save Thousands
We’ve partnered with Clever Real Estate! They negotiate with the top agents in your area so you can get amazing service and save thousands.
If you’re considering Assist-2-Sell pros and cons, it’s important to compare all of your discount broker options. We recommend reading the following resources to learn about other ways to save.
Discount Real Estate Brokers and Agents: Everything You Need to Know: Curious about how discount brokers like Assist-2-Sell work? Learn more about how these companies create savings, how they’re different from traditional realtors, and how to decide which service is best for you.
What Companies Offer the Lowest Real Estate Commission Fees?: Assist-2-Sell offices typically provide solid savings for home sellers, but other discount services charge even less. Find out which company offers the lowest real estate commission fees.
How to Sell a House Without a Realtor: If you’re an experienced home seller, you can maximize your savings by listing your house “for sale by owner” (FSBO). Want to learn more? Read our comprehensive guide on how to sell a home without a realtor.
Answers to Assist-2-Sell FAQs
How does Assist-2-Sell work?
Assist-2-Sell charges sellers a low flat fee based on their home's listing price. Since the company earns less money from each customer, it compensates for its discounted rates by having agents handle many more transactions than the average realtor.
How much does Assist-2-Sell charge?
Each Assist-2-Sell location is independently owned, and the company does not require franchise operators to adhere to a standardized fee structure. Many offices charge a flat rate of $3,000-9,000 depending on your home's list price, but we've seen others charge a percentage of the final sale price. Contacting your local office is the only way to find Assist-2-Sell costs in your area.
Is Assist-2-Sell good?
Assist-2-Sell offers genuine savings to some home sellers, but customers may compromise on service quality. Assist-2-Sell may be worth considering if it's the only discount real estate company available in your area. However, it's rapidly shrinking, suggesting that competitors offer better overall value with fewer service quality trade-offs.