Choosing the right Real Estate Agent to sell your home is among the most important decisions you can make. While you have already tackled the first hurdle which was to decide whether or not you want the assistance of a realtor in order to sell your home, it should be noted that all real estate agents are not created equal, and there will be a substantial difference in your experience depending on how well suited your agent is to filling your needs.
So how do you discover the ideal agent, among the dozens, or perhaps hundreds, that may work in your area? Here are some helpful methods for discovering an agent who will best suit your selling requirements:
Sincerity – hire an agent who will give you the honest truth about the value of your home, right from the start. You need to make certain that you can trust your realtor to evaluate your home for its true worth, and to tell you this information, instead of making false promises. Pricing accounts for 80% of the marketing strategy that will achieve the highest possible selling price for your home. If your agent tries to overprice your house to “wait and see” if it can be achieved, you’ll find out soon enough. Your property will remain on the market so long that it will become stale, and you’ll need to settle for a lower price. Make certain that you find an agent who will give you the best price, and sell it while the listing is still fresh. This will give the highest opportunities for negotiations, and the best selling price with the most favorable terms.
Marketing Superiority – you need an agent who won’t just list your home, but who will implement an effective marketing strategy. Newspapers find only 1% of all buyers. Same thing goes for open houses, and “For Sale” signs. A good agent will not only wait for buyers to find them, but will also seek out buyers by using additional techniques such as phone, fax, mail, email, printed media, and direct personal contact. The listing only sets up the basics. It’s the truly professional marketing strategy that will make sure that your home is sold for the highest amount in the shortest length of time.
Negotiations Specialist – one of the most vital parts of the sale itself is the negotiations when it comes down to the very nitty-gritty. This is where money is made or lost, so you need to have a capable, experienced, and successful negotiator on your side.
Client Base – if you really want to sell your home for its maximum potential, then hiring a realtor who already has a large client base of prospective buyers should be key when you select him or her. If your agent already has buyers in mind when your home is listed, you create the highest opportunity for a fast sale, at a high price, with favorable terms, and even open the doors to the coveted bidding war.
Commissions – as much as agents who discount their real estate commissions seem attractive, they should usually be avoided. Think of the real estate commission as an investment, instead of an expense, and work with a realtor who thinks the same way. After all, the higher the commission, the harder your agent will work to sell your home – and for the highest price. You want your real estate agent to have the best possible motivation for achieving the fastest and most profitable sale.
Busy Agents – you need to select an agent who is busy. This may seem a bit strange, as you may wonder if a busy agent will have time for you; but the fact is that busy agents are the ones who get things done. They’re the ones who have repeat, loyal clients, who know that the potential of the sale will be maximized by this particular agent. Think about it: if you were on vacation, and saw two restaurants next to each other, serving the same kind of food, would you pick the busy one, or the one with only one or two patrons?
Agents with a team – similar to the above point about busy agents, is that about agents who have a team to support them. Agents who are busy enough will need to hire a team to cover the details while they’re out working on the essentials. They’re simply too busy to work alone. By hiring a team, you have the advantage of many specialized people, all for the price of one agent.Surprise-free strategy – the best kind of real estate agent is the one who goes out of his or her way to make sure that you are kept up to date on everything that is happening with your sale. You should be able to receive an update at least every week, including the number of people who have seen the home so far, what they thought, and if any similar homes in the area have sold recently. You should also be told what is being done to promote your property.
Technology – hire an agent who is on the cutting edge of technology. Three quarters of all homebuyers are using the internet as the primary source for discovering their new home. This being said, if your agent isn’t putting a good deal of energy into using the world wide web as a part of the marketing strategy of your home, you’ve chosen the wrong agent. The internet allows your home to be seen by everyone, no matter what newspaper the subscribe to, no matter what hour of the day they want to search, and without having to live in the area of your home. Technology should be considered extremely important to the selection of your agent.
Reputation and Experience – No matter how many promises a real estate agent may make, the only real way to measure the performance a real estate agent may make is by way of the agent’s history and past successes (and, perhaps, failures). Therefore, when you are choosing an agent, be sure to ask the following questions: How many years have you been in the real estate business? What is your total annual sales volume? What is your ranking in the local Real Estate Board? How many clients do you have as your base? How many homes that you list are sold? How many (percentagewise) do you sell? What is the percentage of the selling price versus the asking price? How often do you find buyers for your own listings?