There are many reasons why a REALTOR® is essential when buying or selling your home, but which REALTOR® is best for you?
You are going to be spending a lot of time with your REALTOR®, so take the time to choose wisely.
Your REALTOR® who helped you buy your current house is a good start.
Sticking with a REALTOR® just makes sense. If they did a good job helping you buy your home, they’re probably the best candidate for helping you sell it. They already know the home inside and out, and they know you, so you’ll save time two ways.
Ask family and friends for a recommendation of a Realtor® who has given them EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE. Hire a Realtor® who lives in the area where you want to buy, not just one who is licensed to sell there. For example, I live in the Greater Moncton Area, and am an expert in the Real Estate Market here. While I am licensed to sell in the entire Province of New Brunswick, I would never sell a home in Fredericton (as an example) as I do not have first hand knowledge of the Real Estate Market there and would not be able to accurately advise what fair market value is.
If you don't have family or friends in the area you are considering moving to, jot down the names and numbers of REALTORS® on the “For Sale” signs in that neighbourhood. You can also visit one of the local real estate offices; it’s guaranteed they’ll know your area.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions, or screen a few REALTORS® before deciding. Make sure you feel comfortable with them, and that you are a good fit for each other personality wise. Do you feel that they show a genuine interest in helping you?
Should you choose the REALTOR® who suggests the highest asking price for your home?
Ask what method they used to assess your home’s market value. How was your home compared to other homes in your neighbourhood that have been sold recently?
1. How long have you been in the business?
A freshly-licensed REALTOR® can do a wonderful job and will have up-to-date training; those in the business longer bring more practical experience to the table. I recommend you only hire a REALTOR® who works FULL TIME in the Real Estate Industry with a minimum of 5 years experience.
2. What is your average list-to-sales-price ratio?
A competent listing REALTOR® should hold a track record for negotiating sales prices that are very close to list prices.
3. How will your marketing plan meet my needs?
Specifically, how will you sell my home? Where and how often do you advertise? Will you show me a sample flyer? How do you market online?
4. Will you provide references?
Ask if any of the references are related to the REALTOR®. Ask if you can call their references with additional questions.
5. What separates you from your competition?
Key phrases to listen for: assertive, available by phone or e-mail, analytical, professional, reliable, and able to maintain a good sense of humour under trying circumstances.
6. May I review documents that I will be asked to sign?
A good REALTOR® makes forms available to you before you are required to sign them. Ask to see agency disclosure, the listing agreement and seller disclosure.
7. How will you help me find other professionals?
Ask for a written list of referring vendors. Get an explanation if you see the term “affiliated”. It could mean the REALTOR® is getting compensation from vendors.
8. How much do you charge?
You don’t have to ask if the fee is negotiable, since all real estate fees are negotiated. It may be a good idea to ask what their commission fee is, for your reference.
9. What kind of guarantee do you offer?
If you sign a listing agreement with the REALTOR® and later find that you are unhappy with the arrangement, will the REALTOR® let you cancel the agreement?
10. What haven’t I asked you that I need to know?
Pay close attention to how the REALTOR® answers this question, because there is always something you need to know--always.