How Do You Pick a Real Estate Agent?
Without a doubt picking the right real estate agent when selling a home is one of the most critical aspects to having success. Unfortunately for whatever reason, lots of people don’t take the selection a real estate agent seriously enough.
It is not hard to understand why there are so many complaints from consumers about bad experiences with the real estate agent they have chosen. Getting into the real estate industry is far easier than it should be. You would think that when people are dealing with what is usually someone’s largest asset, the bar would be set high for who can do that. Clearly far too often this is not the case! Knowing how to select a real estate agent remains a low priority for numerous consumers.
You have to ask yourself why someone will put finding a good hair stylist over choosing an exceptional real estate agent. Many people are throwing their hard earned money down the drain because they don’t think who represents them matters. Oh Boy is that wrong!
For this reason, I have put together a field guide for why selecting the right real estate agent is critical.
After reading, you may even decide that knowing how to fire your Realtor is important!
Is Your Real Estate Agent A Post And Pray Realtor?
A great Realtor can be a treasured asset to your home sale, but only if that Realtor is doing his or her job right. Some Realtors, unfortunately, are more of the “post and pray” type, choosing to put up a sign, posting in the multiple listing service (MLS), and then forgetting about you. But for your Realtor to get the job done, he or she needs to be out networking, getting the word out about your home and drawing in prospective buyers.
You can easily spot the difference between a quality real estate agent and one who is more the post and pray type. A quality agent will have a strong online presence, including a website and blog, and will have plenty of current references that speak positively, will create detailed descriptions of your home for listings, will use video tours and slide shows, and will communicate regularly with you throughout the entire sales process. Any agent that fails to meet these criteria is probably not someone you want helping you sell your valuable real estate.
I have coined the term post and pray Realtor. This is an article worth reading. Selecting a Real Estate agent is not something that should be taken for granted!
Choose A Realtor By Asking Great Real Estate Interview Questions
There is probably no shortage of real estate agents in your town. While it is nice to have so many different choices, the fact is that many of these agents are not necessarily the best choice to help you sell your home. You want someone who is excellent at their job, not someone who only works in half measures. This is why it is important that you ask the right questions when you are choosing your real estate agent.
You want to interview some agents using questions that show what they are made of.
- You can ask how long they have been in real estate?
- How many homes have they sold in the last year?
- How many of those sales were near the original listing price?
- How long did each of those listings take to sell?
- If they have an assistant, and if they are confident using the internet to sell a home?
The answers they give will tell you what you need to know.
See what are the best interview questions to ask a real estate agent to increase your chances of a prudent choice. You can also see more ways to pick a listing agent at Realtor.com.
Top Home Seller Mistakes When Selecting A Real Estate Agent
Your agent will be on the front lines in the battle to sell your home, working as your advocate and ensuring that you get the best price for your real estate. This is why it is so unfortunate that many owners fail to select a quality Realtor, leaving them with an agent that may or may not get them the best price.
Some of the most common mistakes when selecting a Realtor center around only using one criterion for selection, like choosing a friend or neighbor, choosing someone that sold a ton of homes – even though those sales were all for far below the original asking price.
Sellers may choose a Realtor because they like his or her personality, which is not bad, but you should be focused on tangible evidence of ability. You want to select a Realtor that has sold homes recently, quickly, and for close to the price he or she listed them at. If he or she is also your friend, great, but the focus should be selling ability.
Signs You Hired The Wrong Realtor
Sometimes you may have an excellent feeling about a Realtor at the beginning and hire the person. Or maybe you felt like you had no time to interview agents, so you just went with the first option that came along. Your decision may be a lucky one, and you may get a great agent. But maybe not. There are some signs you can look for to help you determine the quality of your Realtor, and if you might need to get another one.
Some signs you should be looking for in a low-quality Real Estate agent include lack of confidence, failure to use all the resources available – like the internet, folding quickly in negotiations, no communication, being disorganized, offering too little advice, being too pushy, and appearing desperate.
If you notice any of these qualities in your Realtor, you should probably have a talk with him or her – or just hire a different agent. There are plenty of real estate agents out there that have the necessary qualities to get the job done. See how to tell you picked a bad Realtor. Contact one now.
Real Estate Agents Misleading Sellers On Market Value
When an agent tells you that your house is worth a lot of money, it can be a great feeling. They are supposed to be the experts, after all. But the price the real estate agent tells you may not be what your home is worth, especially if the agent is trying hard to get new clients. It is an unfortunate reality that some agents will over inflate a home’s value to draw in customers, then when the home does not sell, will drop the price to something that is more competitive. The owner is desperate at that point, and the Realtor gets a sale. This is a strategy some agent have to get business. In fact, it is the reason why Realtors will take an overpriced listing. This is the worst type of real estate agent for a lot of reasons but the most important one being they are DISHONEST!
Consumers should understand that intentionally misleading a seller on market value is one of the worst things a real estate agent can do. In fact, it is expressly forbidden in the code of ethics all Realtors need to follow. Here is the language we are bound by as Realtors.
- Standard of Practice 1-3
REALTORS®, in attempting to secure a listing, shall not deliberately mislead the owner as to market value.
This is why it is so important for home sellers to talk to multiple real estate agents before they hire anyone. Even if one Real Estate agent over inflates the price of your home, others may be more conservative and base the price on real evidence. These are the kinds of agents you want because it is tough to recover from overpricing a home when you first put it on the market. Real Estate agents who mislead homeowners on value should be avoided at all costs!
Hiring A Top Producing Realtor Can Make A Big Difference
When you go to sell your house, you naturally want to make as much money as you can from the sale. But what many homeowners do not realize is that getting a sale, and selling for a decent price, is not usually something that happens with no effort. It takes a lot of hard work, which is what a real estate agent is for. When you try to cut costs by going with a cheaper Realtor, you may be damaging your ability to sell your house – especially if you want it sold quickly and for a high dollar amount.
A top producing Realtor is where he or she is at for a reason. This person knows how to sell, and even if he or she charges a higher commission, the work was done by the Realtor more than makes up for the increased cost. You can go with a lower commission agent, but that agent may not do what needs to be done to accomplish your sales goals and get you a great price on your home.
Why a Real Estate Commission Split Matters
The split between a seller’s agent and a buyer’s agent is not set in stone, which has allowed some cheaper brokerages to start cutting corners and offering lower payouts to agents. While every agent is happy to work for their money, the fact is that no agent is willing to work for virtually free. When a property comes on the market with a low commission, there is a good chance that some Realtors will avoid showing the property to their clients. This is bad news for everyone.
As a seller, you should be aware of the commission that agents are getting from your sale, and you should make sure that it is competitive in your market. If it is not, you risk running into major problems when you try to move your home. If no one sees the home, no one will make an offer.
Even if the home is shown, the agent may talk the buyer out of purchasing it. This doesn’t happen because you don’t have a desirable property – it happens because the agent doesn’t want to make less money! When selling quickly and for a good price is important to you, make sure the commission is always reasonable. Weak Real Estate agents will often cut commission for no other reason than they have no business and are in desperate need of acquiring some!
See why the real estate commission offered matters quite a bit in the overall success of selling a home as well as what you ultimately put in your pocket.
Hopefully, all of the above resources have been helpful in understanding how to choose a real estate agent!
Other Resources From Top Agents on Selecting a Realtor
- Mistakes made when choosing a Real Estate Agent via Rochester Real Estate Blog.
- Hire a family member only if they are the best choice via Great Colorado Homes.
- Is your Realtor a trusted adviser via Frederick Real Estate Online.
- What successful real estate agents avoid via Immoafrica.
- What to look for in a real estate agent via RIS Media.
- 16 ways to know you hired a real estate clown via Buzzfeed.
- Why should I pick you to sell my home via Imagine Your House.
- Why you need a Realtor Via Selling Warner Robbins.
- Things to consider when selecting a Realtor via MADHomesUtah.com
Use these additional helpful resources to make sure the agent you choose to represent your best interests is the right one! If you have not figured it out by now, the real estate agent you want can go a long way to the success you have in selling your home.
About the Author: The above Real Estate information on the field guide for why picking the right Real Estate agent is critical was provided by Bill Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at [email protected] or by phone at 508-625-0191. Bill has helped people move in and out of many Metrowest towns for the last 28+ Years.
Thinking of selling your home? I have a passion for Real Estate and love to share my marketing expertise!
I service Real Estate sales in the following Metrowest MA towns: Ashland, Bellingham, Douglas, Framingham, Franklin, Grafton, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hopedale, Medway, Mendon, Milford, Millbury, Millville, Northborough, Northbridge, Shrewsbury, Southborough, Sutton, Wayland, Westborough, Whitinsville, Worcester, Upton and Uxbridge MA.