• Aimee.Dillon

How to Choose the Best Real Estate Agent for you Property

Choosing a Real Estate agent is one of the most important keys to success when selling a home. In most communities there are hundreds of Real Estate agents to choose from. Choosing the wrong Real Estate agent can be the “kiss-of-death” when it comes to home selling success.

The signs that point to the fact you’ve hired the wrong Real Estates agent can be avoided if you’re educated on some of the top mistakes made by sellers when choosing an agent. Here are some tips to help you along the way.

Choosing A Part-Time Realtor

Real estate may seem on the surface to many as a career that it doesn’t take lots of time and effort but one that leads to boatloads of money. This is actually one of the top real estate myths that is heard over and over again. Many Real Estate agents get into the business part-time because they believe it can be done on a part-time basis. This is the furthest from the truth.

When choosing a Realtor, one of the questions you should absolutely ask is if they are a full-time or part-time Realtor. If you think about it, how available will a part-time Realtor be to answer inquiries on your home if they are busy with an “8-5 job?” In all likelihood, they will be busy completing tasks from their other position.

In addition to answering inquiries, a part-time agent will struggle to have the time to promote and give your home maximum exposure. One of the biggest “jobs” of an agent is to expose their clients home to the most people possible.

Only Interviewing One Agent

A seller who knows how to properly interview a Real Estate agent when selling a home can save themselves many headaches in the future. A common mistake made by sellers when choosing a Real Estate agent to sell their home, is they forget about this step in the process. Interviewing more than one agent is strongly suggested.

It’s important that when choosing a Real Estates agent you can compare one to another, because they are not all the same. Not only are Realtors different, the companies that they work for are also different. Each Realtor and their company will provide different tools for their sellers, advertise their homes differently, and also have different styles of selling homes. One extra tip to keep in mind when choosing a agent and interviewing them is that because two agents may work for the same company, doesn’t mean they will provide the same service and utilize the same tools.

Choosing A Real Estate Agent Because They Sold “X number” Homes Last Year

Choosing a Real Estate agent based on the number of homes they sold last year or in years past is not suggested.

Every real estate market is different and can vary significantly from town to town. Just because a Realtor didn’t sell 50 homes in your town, doesn’t mean they won’t be able to get your home sold. When choosing a Realtor don’t make the mistake of not asking them how they plan on marketing your home and why they think they can sell a home in your town.

For example, a Real Estate agent who sold only 5 homes last year in the your local area market could be just as good if not a better choice than a Realtor who sold 25 homes in the same town last year. Don’t choose your Real Estate agent based solely on the number of homes they sold, you need to dig deeper and get more details and make sure you’re comfortable with them.

Choosing A Real Estates agent Because They Suggest The Highest Price

Pricing a home right from the start is critical. The price a home enters the market at will often determine if a home sells or not. Choosing a Real estate agent because they suggest the highest price is a common mistake made by home sellers. Before you choose the Real Estate agent who suggests the highest price, you need to know how they have determined their price recommendation.

There are many different pricing mechanisms for real estate. Ask the Realtor who suggests the highest price how they came up with that price. Ask them if they performed a comparative market analysis, also known as, a CMA. It’s important not only that your home is priced right to attract potential buyers, but also to make sure there are no issues in the future with a bank being able to substantiate the value during their appraisal. The appraisal price is only a indication, the skill is marketing your home effectively to get the current market to pay the highest price.

Choosing A Real Estate Agent Based Only On Commission

First things first, commission is negotiable. Commission rates can vary from town to town, company to company. When choosing a Real Estate agent, it’s likely that the majority of agents will have the similar commission percentage. A huge mistake made by home sellers when choosing an agent to sell their home is selecting the agent who offers a significant discount on their commission.

Why is this a problem? It sounds great that you would save money, right? Wrong. If a Real Estate agent agrees to a lower commission with no resistance or very little, can you imagine how strong their negotiations will be on your behalf when you receive an offer? In addition to their negotiation strength, if a Real Estate agent is working for less than the “normal” commission, do you truly believe they will spend their time and energy trying to sell your home a top priority? What you save in commission at the start may mean you loosing out on 10's of thousands at the end.

When it comes to choosing a Real Estate agent based on commission only, I always say, “you get what you pay for.” An agent who offers to cut their commission is likely doing this out of desperation to obtain a contract to sell your home.

Walk the Walk and Talk the Talk

In my opinion, it’s not enough for a real estate agent just to love houses. Don’t get me wrong, you want an agent to be enthusiastic and friendly and love what they do, but have a much longer list of ‘criteria’ than just “I heart houses.” you want an agent who understands the market trends from month to month. An agent who knows what can and can’t be done to homes either with construction or simply from a planning and zoning perspective. You want an agent who gets the process inside and out so she can tell us what is ‘likely’ to happen in a week, in a month, or in 6 months. You want an agent who knows you and what we’re looking for. Not show you a turn-key split level when we’re looking to find a house with room for improvements.

Bringing in the Experts

You want your agent to be your expert expert when it comes to real estate, but often it requires lots of other people beyond that! For example, You may need a good mortgage broker, builder, engineer or designer. A good agent will have a great photographer on hand to take amazing photos and overhead drone footage. A good agent has someone to work with you on staging. Curious how you could add a bathroom to the second floor of that house you just visited? A good agent has a contractor who can weigh in. A great agent will have a team of Experts at there finger tips ready and waiting to spring into action!

Dreams Vs. Reality

We all have a perspective about our own house and house hunt that is influenced by feelings and our own blind spots. When we sold our first house, potential buyer after potential buyer would comment that the price seemed a bit high given that it needed a new kitchen, etc. In our mind, we thought it was such a great opportunity, but we needed our agent to tell us that it WAS an opportunity, but… the reality was that we needed to come down on our price a bit. That navy accent wall that you copied from Home and Garden? It’s SO CHIC and ON TREND… but 9/10 of the people who walk through the house mention how dark the room feels. Guess what? PAINT THE WALL. That house you LOVE half a mile away? It is in a really tough area for resale… be cautious with upgrades. A great agent will tell you these things.

Please feel free to contact me personally for any advice regarding Real Estate. aimee.dillon@bayleys.co.nz

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