Redfin, at a glance
- Redfin is a multi-state real estate brokerage, currently operating in 80+ U.S. markets.
- If you’re selling, get full service and support from Redfin’s in-house team of agents for a 1.5% listing fee — or 1% if you buy and sell with Redfin.
- Expect to pay a 2.5-3% buyer’s agent commission, resulting in a ~3.5-4.5% total commission fee (note: the total rate for sellers is typically 5-6%).
- Note: Redfin’s rates vary by market and minimum fees may apply — learn more here.
- Redfin Agents don’t work on commission — they’re salaried, which could have negative implications for sellers.
- If you’re buying, you may be eligible for a “Redfin Refund,” which puts cash back in your pocket at closing. Learn about the terms and restrictions here.
- In markets Redfin doesn’t serve, it can refer you to local, full-service “Partner Agents” — but its rates and refunds are not guaranteed.
- As of May 20, 2020, Redfin's average customer rating is 3.2/5 based on 243 reviews Yelp, Google, and Consumer Affairs — see more reviews here.
What is Redfin?
Redfin is an online listing portal and multi-state real estate brokerage operating in 80+ markets across the United States.
You can use Redfin to search for any home, not just its own listings (the portal pulls from the MLS), or conduct local market research. However, when you search for an agent, your results will be limited to Redfin’s in-house team or local partners.
How does Redfin work?
Redfin’s business model has three primary arms:
- Online property listings portal
- Full listing services and support at a discounted rate for home sellers
- Buyer’s agent services for home buyers
Redfin sellers get full service and support from one of Redfin’s in-house agents for a reduced listing fee of 1.5% (the typical rate is usually 2.5-3%). The listing fee drops to 1% for sellers who buy and sell with Redfin.
Redfin sellers should expect to offer a buyer’s agent commission as well — typically between 2.5-3%, depending on the market — bringing the total commission fee to 4-5%. That means you’ll likely save between 1-2% compared to the typical 5-6% total fee in a traditional real estate transaction.
Note that minimum fees apply and vary by market. Depending on the sale price of your home, these fees could result in you paying more than the advertised 1-1.5% listing fee. The average minimum fee across all Redfin markets is $3,343.
Redfin buyers get full service and support from one of Redfin’s in-house agents. As with a traditional agent, buyers will not have to pay their Redfin agent a commission fee. This fee is paid by the sellers.
In select markets, buyers can qualify for a Redfin Refund. Also known as a home buyer rebate, this means the agent will give a portion of their commission back to the buyer at closing. Redfin doesn’t specify a set percentage, but says the average Redfin Refund for eligible buyers is $1,500.
Redfin also offers a variety of online tools, resources, and services for sellers and buyers alike. These include calculators and home value estimators, listing portals, educational content, virtual tours, closing services, and more.
Pros and cons of Redfin
|Redfin Pros||Redfin Cons|
|Sellers get full service and support for a discounted rate of 1.5%||Limited market coverage — only available in ~80 U.S. markets.|
|Rate drops to 1% when you sell and buy with Redfin||The minimum listing fees can result in you paying above the advertised 1-1.5% rate|
|Access to a variety of online tools and services, including virtual showings, paperwork, closing, and more.||Your choice of agents is limited to Redfin’s in-house team or local partners|
|Commission rebate offered to eligible buyers in select markets||Local partners don’t necessarily adhere to Redfin’s discount pricing model|
|Yelp*||3.5/5 (120 reviews)||See Yelp reviews|
|Google*||4.5/5 (42 reviews)||See Google reviews|
|Consumer Affairs||2/5 (81 reviews)||See Consumer Affairs reviews|
|N/A - no reviews posted||See Facebook profile|
|Better Business Bureau||B+||See Redfin’s BBB profile|
|Weighted Average||3.2/5 (243 reviews)|
*These reviews are for Redfin’s Seattle, WA office. Reviews may vary by location. We recommend conducting your own research for customer reviews specific to your area.
Redfin has an average rating of 3.2/5 rating based on 443 customer reviews on Yelp, Google, and Consumer Affairs. Redfin has a B+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, with 14 customer reviews.
Redfin also compiles customer reviews for individual agents and its partner agents. Redfin customers are surveyed following a purchase or sale. When you search for Redfin agents or partners in your area, their average rating and customer reviews will feature in their profiles.
Selling with Redfin
The experience of selling with Redfin is similar to selling with a traditional agent. There are two key differences:
- Redfin offers built-in discounts on listing fees
- Redfin Agents don’t work on commission — they’re salaried Redfin employees
That’s not to say that this is the case with every Redfin Agent, but the fact is that the company’s model opens the door for this possibility.
Redfin fees for sellers
When you sell with Redfin, expect to pay a listing fee of 1.5%, plus a buyer’s agent commission. Buyer's agent commission are negotiable and vary by market and home type, but rates are typically 2.5-3% nationwide. If you sell and buy with Redfin, your listing fee drops to 1%. As such, the total commission fee for Redfin sellers is usually between 3.5-4.5% — compared to the traditional 5-6% rate.
The table below breaks down typical fees for Redfin sellers along with cost estimates based on a $350,000 home.
|Redfin Listing fee||1-1.5%||$3,500-5,250|
|Buyer’s agent fee||2.5-3%||$8,750-10,500|
*Based on a $350,000 home.
**Compared to the standard 5-6% commission rate.
Keep in mind that Redfin has minimum listing fees that vary from market to market, which can result in you paying more than the advertised 1-1.5%.
For example, if you sell a $300,000 in Washington, D.C., where the minimum service fee is $5,250, your listing fee would end up being closer to 1.75% — even if you plan to buy with Redfin and, therefore, should qualify for the lower 1% fee.
The average minimum fee across all Redfin markets is $3,343, though it ranges from $2,000 to $6,500.
Note: if you opt to sell with Redfin outside of its coverage area, it will refer you to one of its local Partner Agents. Redfin’s Partner Agents do not necessarily honor the company’s discount commission model, so you could end up paying more.
Redfin vs traditional agent
Redfin’s in-house agents are all licensed and provide the same services as traditional agents; however, unlike traditional agents, Redfin agents don’t work on commission — they’re paid a salary, with bonuses based on customer satisfaction.
|Listing commission fee||1-1.5%*||2.5-3%|
|Buyer’s agent commission**||2.5-3%||2.5-3%|
|Professional home valuation||✓||✓|
|Listing on MLS, Realtor.com, Zillow, etc.||✓||✓|
|Sign in yard||✓||✓|
|Marketing (digital + print)||✓||✓|
|Open houses & showings||✓||✓|
|Help with closing||✓||✓|
*1.5% if you sell, 1% if you sell and buy. Minimum service fees vary by location — learn more.
**Buyer’s agent commission is negotiable, and typical rates vary by market and home type — 2-3% is common
Redfin also recently launched a direct buyer program called RedfinNow, staking its claim in the rapidly growing “iBuyer” marketplace.
Available in 10 markets across the U.S., RedfinNow makes fast, all-cash offers on qualifying properties, enabling sellers to bypass the traditional listing process altogether.
In exchange for this service, RedfinNow charges a built-in 7% fee and will deduct the cost of any necessary repairs from the initial offer after an on-site inspection.
>> LEARN more about RedfinNow here.
Buying with Redfin
The experience of buying with Redfin is, theoretically, similar to buying with a traditional agent. According to Redfin, buyers will get full service and support throughout the entire process.
What is a Redfin Refund?
The Redfin Refund is a commission rebate available to home buyer’s in select states. A commission rebate is when a buyer’s agent gives a percentage of their fee back to their clients at closing. According to Redfin, it’s average Refund is $1,500.
It’s also important to note that some terms and restrictions apply:
- The Redfin Refund may be cancelled or adjusted if the commission received by Redfin is less than 1% of the home’s list price or $6,500 (whichever is greater)
- Redfin Refund may not be paid if the home is purchased as a short sale
- Lender approval is required for all commission refunds
- The Redfin Refund is not available in certain Redfin markets, including:
|Redfin Refund is not available in the following markets|
|El Paso, TX||Oregon|
|Little Rock, AK||Tennessee|
Compare top Redfin alternatives in 2020
Redfin may be a viable option for some home sellers; however, it’s worth evaluating multiple services and home selling approaches before making a final decision.
To help you compare your options, we’ve compiled some basic info on similar services that offer discounted and flat commission rates. We recommend reading the full reviews, via the links below, and reaching out to these companies directly to learn more.
|Brokerage||Listing fee||Buyer rebate*|
|Redfin (back to top)||1-1.5% — minimum fees vary by market||Average $1,500|
|Clever Real Estate||1% — $3,000 flat fee for homes under $350,000||Up to 1%|
|REX Real Estate||2% — $9,000 min fee for homes under $450,00||1-1.5% (only if buying a non-REX home)|
|Redefy||$500 nonrefundable fee up front + $3,000 at closing||N/A|
*In states where buyer rebates are legal.
It’s also worth exploring other home selling approaches before choosing to list with a discount brokerage. Here are some additional resources to help you understand all of your options so you can make a more informed decision.
- Flat-fee MLS services
- iBuyer services
- We Buy Houses for Cash companies
- Selling for sale by owner (FSBO)
- Flat-fee real estate agents
Next steps: Get advice from a real estate expert
If you’re looking to buy or sell a house and weighing your options, Clever can help!
Our fully licensed Concierge Team is standing by to answer your questions and offer free, objective advice about how to sell your home, given your specific goals and situation.
Give us a call at 1-833-2-CLEVER, or enter your basic info below to get started.
Redfin locations and minimum fees
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|Market||Listing Fee||Minimum Fee|
|New York City & Long Island||1.5%||$5,000|
|Northern New England||1.5%||$3,250|
|Salt Lake City||1.5%||$3,000|
Source: Redfin Commission Savings Disclaimer
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