HOW TO CHOOSE A REAL ESTATE AGENT
Choosing a Realtor to sell your home can be a daunting process. There are many things to consider; how much do they charge? How will they market my home? Are they good negotiators? Are they up-to-date with technology? Are they readily available? Do they follow up effectively? Do they have my best interests in mind?
The most common mistake made when selecting a Realtor is making the decision solely on the total commission charged when other variables should be more heavily weighted.
Here are a few things to consider:
Companies spend BILLIONS of dollars every year marketing themselves and their products, there's no questioning the value of good marketing. Yes, a home may sell at some point without doing any marketing but the question is, how long will it take and how much will it sell for? When consumers buy products, real estate included, they're decision to buy is based on an emotional connection. Those who are more emotionally connected to the product will pay more money because they see more value.
Hire an agent who will take great photos, uses video (not traditional slide-shows or 'virtual tours') and sets up your home with staging items and in-home marketing. You have two opportunities to establish an emotional connection with someone, online and in person, both of which are equally important.
The more people you connect with, the more likely you are to find the few buyers who fall in love with your home and pay top dollar, as you deserve.
YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, digital SLR cameras, and HD video recorders are just a few websites and pieces of equipment that a Realtor needs to have in their arsenal to properly market your home -- if your Realtor shows up to take pictures with their tablet or smart phone, send them to Best Buy or Henry’s to get some real equipment.
3. Sales and Negotiation
"Professional" -- A person who is paid to undertake a specialized set of tasks and orchestrate them with uncommon skill.
The ability to sell and negotiate isn't one that comes naturally, it takes a lot of practice and training to refine those skills. From having systems in place to follow up with prospective buyers to negotiating deals, it takes a true professional to do it properly.
As part of your research, ask a Realtor for referrals to get first hand feedback from past clients. There are also new websites such as Locate Top Agents popping up where you can find unbiased feedback as well.