If you’re selling your home, a good real estate agent can – and should – make a very big difference to the price you eventually achieve.
But, with so many real estate agents available, how can you tell which one is the right person for your job?
Here’s five things to consider when making the decision about which real estate agent to use.
Do they have local knowledge?
The real estate market differs greatly depending on location. The reality is that the value of homes can change from street-to-street, suburb-to-suburb and building-to-building. Only a real estate agent with local knowledge will be able to tell you how and why that’s the case and arrive at an accurate view of what your home is really worth.
That’s because they’ll know which buyers are in the market at the moment, what appeals to them and what doesn’t, and what people will pay extra for.
Have they sold similar properties?
Another way to tell whether an agent is best for your home, is to look at what comparable properties they’ve sold nearby recently and what prices they’ve achieved for them.
This will help you see whether they have experience achieving good prices for similar real estate in a similar market. It also shows that they should have a ready-made network of potential local buyers who they know are looking for homes just like yours.
How will they market your property?
Selling real estate is about much more than simply putting an advertisement online and hoping people will show up. It’s about matching the right property to the right buyers. It’s also about choosing the method of sale – such as auction or private treaty – that’s likely to make those buyers most comfortable and achieve the highest price for your property.
This usually means analysing the features of your property and highlighting those that are likely to appeal to their target buyers. It also means tapping into their existing network of potential buyers who may be ready to buy homes just like yours.
What are they like in action?
It’s one thing to read a real estate agent’s marketing material or hear their pitch. It’s another thing entirely to see them in action. If you can, attend the open homes of other properties for sale in your area to see how individual real estate agents behave at the open home.
Do they put their best foot forward when it comes to showcasing the property and encouraging you to buy? Are they polite, confident and – above all – knowledgeable? How they come across when you see them elsewhere is also how they’re likely to fare when it comes to selling your home.
A good agent will be a good salesperson and negotiator, with the vendors best interests at heart, but they should also treat buyers with respect and honesty.
Can you trust them?
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, it’s important that you trust the real estate agent you engage. You’re going to be working closely with them over the sales campaign and it’s important that you respect their opinion and ability. But measuring trust isn’t always easy.
So ask questions and, when you do, think about whether their answers are the truth or simply what you want to hear. Enquire with friends and family about their experiences with the agent. And do your own probing to make sure you’ll be comfortable with them. After all, you’ll be working closely with them and relying their expertise to get you the very best price for your home.
Choosing the right real estate agent is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when it comes to selling your home and it’s important you get it right. So take your time, do your own research and make sure your decision is an informed one.