If you’re looking for a listing agent, you can find advertisements in many places. However, you have to find the right fit. While you can easily locate service rating websites about other sales professionals, it’s harder to find feedback for real estate transactions. These tips can help you cut through the marketing hype, so you can find the right real estate professional to help sell your home.
When looking for the right real estate agent, make sure to ask what services they provide vs. other agents. They ALL will tell you they will list your home in the MLS and in other places online like Trulia and Zillow and Realtor.com but it’s the other things they do that make the difference. Some questions you might want to ask: Do they take professional photos? Do they create an actual Video Virtual Tour (not one made with photos)? Do they hold an Open House? Do they use Showing Time or a similar service? Do they employ Text Message technology so people driving by can text a number to get more details on your home? Will they be marketing your home on Social Media?
Make sure to check the agents Client Reviews and Testimonials. These can go a long way in telling you how happy other people were with the agents performance. If you can’t find any online then don’t be shy about asking them for references or where you can find their reviews. Be sure to read the good and the bad and to give each agent you interview a chance to explain any bad reviews.
Since every state regulates the real estate business, find out if the agent has a license or has disciplinary complaints on file. The credentials are mandatory in any state. You can find this information online or by contacting the regulatory body. In some states, the governing agency is called the Department of Real Estate. This organization can also tell you how long an agent has been in business. While personal preferences vary, at least five years of experience is recommended.
Any member of the National Association of Realtors goes by “Realtor”. While this designation isn’t mandatory, a Realtor has formally pledged to abide by ethics. Real estate professionals often have extra training to give them additional skills.
Applicable specifications include CRS (Certified Residential Specialists), GRI (graduate of the Realtor Institute) and SRES (Seniors Real Estate Specialists). While these aren’t necessary, it helps to match up an accredited professional with your needs and shows that the agent is dedicated to their profession.
Find out the agent’s success rate by examining sales figures for the prior year. Inquire how long properties remained on the market, how much they sold for above or below listing price and the average amount of days on market for THEIR listings. You also want to know the asking price & selling price of past sales, so you can find out how much prior sellers had to concede or profit they made. Look for an agent who specializes in the property you’re selling, especially in regards to size and location.
No matter how good an agent looks on paper, you want to make sure he knows your neighborhood. Don’t forget to check out his online listings on his agency’s website. Look for properties located in your area with prices similar to your home’s value.
Whether you use recommendations from family or find a real estate agent online, make sure to interview several prospects by following these guidelines. You should consult as many agents as it takes. If they come across as annoyed during the conversation, move on because it is your right to find out credentials. Remember that bigger isn’t always better, so hiring a professional with whom you feel comfortable is important.
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