When selling a home, choosing a listing agent to represent you is one of the most crucial decisions you'll make throughout the entire process. Having the right agent on your side can be the difference between selling your home for top dollar... and losing money on your sale. A good agent can be the difference between selling quickly... and waiting around for months with no interested buyers. A good agent can be the difference between a good price and closing terms... and an offer that's just not right for you. In short, your agent can be the difference between real estate success... and utter failure. Now, with that in mind, wouldn't you say choosing a real estate agent is a critical decision?
All right, so your agent is important. But how do you know you're getting a good agent? Here are some tough questions to ask every agent you interview to ensure you find the right one.
Q. How many homes have you sold in my area this year?
A. Real estate is very localized. In other words, the market in Palm Coast is not the same as in Daytona Beach, or even Flagler Beach. The same home could sell for two different prices in two different locations, so it’s vital to ensure that your real estate agent has experience selling homes in your direct area.
Likewise, you’ll also want to ensure your agent has also sold homes in your price range. An agent used to selling mid-priced properties probably won’t understand the finer details of the luxury market, and vice-versa.
Q. How will you determine the listing price?
A. Pricing a home is one of the most critical steps of the whole transaction. A good realtor should have a solid pricing strategy, usually involving a comparative market analysis (CMA).
Ask your agent for their list-to-sales ratio to determine how good they are at pricing. If the ratio is over 100%, the agent regularly sells homes above the listing price. If it’s below, they typically sell homes for less than they list for.
Q. How will we communicate?
A. Communication is absolutely vital when selling a home! If you can’t communicate with your agent in a way that works for you, it’ll be difficult to stay up-to-date about what’s happening with your home. If texting or emailing is easier for you, your agent should be able to make that happen.
You should also determine how responsive your agent is. In other words, the agent might claim to be fine with emailing, but do they only check their email once a day? Will they answer the phone if you call, or promptly call you back if they’re with another client?
Q. What is your strategy for marketing my property?
A. To sell a home, an agent’s got to get buyers looking at a home, and that requires a pretty solid marketing strategy. So how will your agent get the right buyers to take notice of your home? Online listings? Social media ads? Printed flyers? Ask for examples of past and current listings to see how your agent is marketing their current properties.
Q. How many photos will you take of my property?
A. Did you know that most home searching is done online these days? That means high-quality photos are more important than ever! Your home’s online photos have to really WOW buyers to get them out from behind their computers and up to your front door to take a look in person. You’d be surprised how many agents simply post a handful of low-quality images—that’s definitely not what you want from your Realtor.
Q. Do you have a website?
A. Home searches are done online! Buyers are found online! An agent who doesn’t have a website or an internet presence simply will not be able to find the same quantity of buyers as an agent who does. If your agent isn’t positioned to take advantage of this tremendous amount of online marketing, your home just isn’t going to get as much interest as it could or should.
An agent positioned to be successful should have their own website, as well as a variety of other online platforms at their disposal. This includes a variety of social media, real-estate specific sites like Zillow and Trulia.
Q. How long have you lived in the area? How well do you know it?
A. Many of the communities in Palm Coast and Flagler Beach have different memberships, associations, and fee structures. In order to work with buyers who will likely be asking questions about these kinds of details, an agent has to have good knowledge of the area. If your agent has only been working in the area for a short time, they may not be well-suited to provide buyers with the information they’ll probably request.
Q. Will you provide me three references?
A. Even if you don’t necessarily plan to contact these references, it’s still a good idea to ask for them. A successful agent with satisfied clients should have no problem providing a variety of references. After all, your agent should have nothing to hide!
Selling a Home in Palm Coast or Flagler Beach?
If you're selling a home in Palm Coast or Flagler Beach, Park Side Realty Group would love to help! Call us today and ask us these tough questions to see where we stack up against the competition!