Choosing a real estate agent can be one of the most stressful parts of selling your home – your most valuable asset. Who should you use? Will they be trustworthy and reliable? How do you protect yourself from the unscrupulous?
We’ve worked with many real estate agents over the years and this is our guide to how to feel confident you’ve found the best agent when you decide to sell your home.
Phone a friend
Do you know someone who has recently bought or sold a property? Ask friends and family for recommendations (and who to avoid!). A shout out on Facebook or social media can also provide some good recommendations and link you straight through to some very good agents.
Check out online
Visit one of the real estate portals and see what’s for sale in your neighborhood, and the agents selling properties similar to yours. From there, you’ll be able to view the profiles of salespeople and get a feel for how they present themselves and the properties they’re marketing. If you like what you see, make a note of their names and do some further research on them online.
Visit one of their properties for sale
What better way to see your potential agent in action than by visiting one of their properties? Do they greet you at the door with a smile? Are they friendly and approachable? Are they genuinely interested in your property search? Getting insight into the agent’s ability to follow up is key. You want to know your agent will act on every potential buyer. Take note of how long it takes them to follow up with you.
Know what you’re looking for
Overall, you should be seeking an agent who is genuinely interested in your circumstances and is helpful, polite, likeable, and communicative. You want someone who is proud to represent you and truly understands pricing and fair market value, so that you can get the most out of your sale. Most of all, you want someone who treats you respectfully. Armed with your research, prepare some questions for potential candidates.
Conduct an interview
Once you have found two or three individuals, ask them to visit your home and to do a listing presentation and present their comparative market analysis. Notice how they handle themselves. Do they explain the home buying process to you so that you know what lies ahead? Are they “selling” to you, or are they genuinely listening and responding to your queries? What sales method do they use? Use your questions to make sure you have consistent information upon which you can make your final decision. But most importantly, do you like them? Remember, you are likely to be in daily contact with this person for the next month or three, so you need someone you trust in doing a great job for you.