It’s time to list your home for sale. You’ve put in the hard work, lived out of this home, but there’s something new waiting for you. When the time comes to move, having the right agent by your side matters. So how do you choose the best real estate agent for selling your home? Consider what you want – a professional that can sell your home at the highest dollar point in the shortest amount of time. There are several qualities you should look for in these pros to know whether they are the right fit for your needs or not.
You’re in Charge of This Process
You can find numerous top selling real estate agents by zip code to work with. There’s no shortage of people who want to help you. Yet, the right agent is one that helps you to feel comfortable working through this process. Just remember, these are professionals with different skills and services to offer. It’s up to you to know what to look for in your situation.
How to Research Real Estate Agents – 5 Factors to Consider First
Work through these steps to choose the best agent for your needs.
#1: Know Your Long-Term Goals First
Do you plan to sell and buy a home within the same amount of time? Working with one agent for the entire process can be ideal. They can help you to navigate the market better by knowing what your needs are. If you plan to simply sell, such as after an estate sale or when you are no longer planning to own a home, look for an aggressive agent, one that knows you want the highest dollar value and understands your timeline goals.
If you plan to buy, before you hire an agent, get pre-approved for a loan. It’s important to have a loan lined up to help you fund your new purchase before you start looking for homes for sale. Because the pre-approval process can take some time, you may not want to list your home for sale immediately until you’re confident you can begin looking for a new property.
#2: Knowing Someone Is the Better Option
There are plenty of credentials real estate agents can throw at you – some of these are important. Others are less important than having successfully completed numerous transactions in the past. If you know someone that’s recently sold their home, it helps to talk to them.
- Did they like their agent?
- What type of marketing did the agent do for them?
- How long did it take for the home to sell?
- Did they have to mark down the price of their home to sell it?
- What are the good things and bad things they can say about the process and their agent?
It’s important to choose a real estate agent based on both the good and bad. No transaction is simple, but the best agents make the experience good. Get details from your friends, family, and others in your network to find out what they learned from the experience.
#3: Look for a Realtor
A Realtor and a real estate agent are two different things. Real estate agents need to complete additional training and become a member of the National Association of Realtors in order to use the Realtor term. Having this designation can be important. It helps to indicate that the agent has agreed to abide by the organization’s code of ethics. You want an agent you can trust to do the right thing. This is a legal action, and you don’t want a problem later to arise.
You can also learn more about the other training the agent has. Some will obtain a Certified Residential Specialist designation. This means they’ve completed additional training in the area of residential real estate specifically. Others are SRES or Senior Real Estate Specialists. They work with people who are over the age of 50 and often looking to downsize, buy within retirement communities, or buy second homes. Accredited Buyer’s Representative, or ABR, is another designation. It’s typically used for agents who have experience managing numerous buying transactions. None of these designations are a requirement.
#4: Host an Interview to Get Some Communication Going
Remember that a real estate agent’s job is to sell. If they have trouble selling themselves and their skills to you, it can be hard to see how they are going to sell your home. Here are a few tips to help you learn how to evaluate a real estate agent during an interview.
- Ask them about the local market. They should be able to tell you if it’s a seller’s market or a buyer’s market. They should know the area well. Ask what homes in the area are selling for. Knowledge is an important factor to look for.
- How many clients do they have right now? You want a busy agent, but you don’t want one that doesn’t have time to fit you into their schedule.
- How do they like to communicate? Some will answer text messages, others require appointments made in advance. How accessible are they during the transaction?
As you learn how to choose a real estate agent for selling, remember that you need to feel comfortable with this person. If you don’t trust them instinctively, move on.
#5: How Will They Sell Your Home?
To learn how to choose an agent to sell a home, there is no better place to start than with what their plans are. How will they sell the home? What type of marketing will be done? How long do they anticipate the home taking to sell? Getting their game plan in advance is important because it shows you how confident they are to sell your home at the price point you desire in current market conditions.
Finding a real estate agent for selling doesn’t have to be a challenge if you know what to look for in these professionals. Most of the time, they are happy to offer a consultation and to talk about your home in-depth, giving you the perfect opportunity get a feel for the agent.