ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS
Category Regional News
The thought of selling a home could possibly be the most daunting experience one could encounter, especially considering that it is often a person’s most valuable asset. Employing the services of a professional estate agent who knows the ropes and makes the seller feel comfortable can make the task a much simpler and less overwhelming one.
But how does one know that the estate agent they choose is the right one for them? The first step of this process is to look for an agent who is who is passionate and knowledgeable about the area. An area specialist will understand their target market and how to reach them successfully. How an agent markets a property will have an impact on how many buyers want to view the property and how long it stays on the market. The longer a property is on the market, the less likely the seller will get their asking price.
Once the search has been narrowed down, give the agent a call and ask them to evaluate the property. Although everyone wants the highest possible price for their property, it is important that the evaluation is realistic and in line with current market conditions. An over-valued property will sit on the market much longer and in some cases it may not sell at all. Beware of agents that give higher valuations just to secure a sole mandate on the property, as this will only have a negative impact on the selling process in the long run.
In order to ensure a reasonable guarantee of service, your line of questioning directed at an agent should look to reveal whether the agent is good at what they do, whether it is someone you can trust and whether they care about you or your situation.
- Ask them about their sales performance over the last 6 months. Number of homes sold. Length of time from listing to sale. Average percentage price achieved vs. marketed price.
- Trust is earned and is difficult to determine or establish in an interview. Ask for references, testimonials or similar.
- A person that cares is a person that listens more than they speak. They ask questions before giving opinions. They formulate a plan based on your specific needs as opposed to their objectives and they give honest feedback on what is achievable in your market environment and what is not.
Agents from larger agencies often have more backing, experience, marketing benefits and access to a bigger database of potential buyers. Discuss the type of mandate that will be given to the agent. A good agent will present you with a marketing plan that they believe will help them fulfil the obligations of the mandate and get your home sold in the shortest time and at the best market related price.
The most important element of the relationship between the seller and the agent is trust and the ability to communicate effectively. The agent should work to the seller’s best interest at all times and in order for that to happen, the seller must be able to feel secure with the agent and be able to discuss matters openly and honestly.