Questions Every Seller Should Ask a Realtor
Most sellers don't know how to "properly" interview an agent. Here are some important questions you should be asking on your interviews. If the agent can't or doesn't answer them with a response you want to hear, that may not be the agent for you.
1. Do you work as a full-time Realtor®? This question is very important as you will want to work with an agent who is active and doing this as their sole job to offer you the best service.
2. How many years have you been selling real estate? You may also want to clarify, not how long they’ve had their license. Many agents may have their license 10 years but only be selling or active 2 years. 10 years sounds much better yet they really on have 2 years’ experience.
3. May I cancel my listing with you at anytime if I am not satisfied with your performance, no questions asked? And do you charge a cancellation fee? This would be something you’d want to know in advance as most agents don’t allow this or they get you on the cancellation fee if you do want to cancel. This is part of the contract so make sure they point it out to you, so you are aware of what it states.
4. Do you have a system to follow-up so that we get valuable feedback after every showing? As a seller you will want to know what buyers and agents think of your home, especially if you aren’t receiving any offers.
5. How many properties have you sold within the past year, or 6 months? 90 days? 30 days? Goes back to Question #2 and knowing how active they are.
6. Do you have references that I may check? You may want to contact past or current sellers they are or have worked with. Every good agent will offer this to you.
7. Do you have an Internet Strategy that includes Social Networking and Syndication to expose and promote my home 24-7? Shows what they are doing to market your home online. Also ask them to share with you what they are doing instead of them just answering Yes or No to this question.
8. What is my property worth? What listing price do you recommend? Will it sell at that price? All 3 great questions and they should show you the proof of where they get their numbers from. If an agent shows up to your home and just throws out a number, that’s not good. Where are they getting this from? You want to see it. It’s called a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) and you want to see one and understand it so have them explain it to you. This is one of the more important questions not only to ask, but to also understand. Your property worth is ultimately what a buyer is not only willing to pay for your home in its current condition, but also what an appraiser is willing to say it's worth. (see my other blog post on this topic)
9. Will you GUARANTEE my home will sell for the price you suggest? Almost every agent can’t guarantee a price it will sell for, yet they can tell you a range or round about idea if they know what they are doing and know the market and how to price homes correctly.
10. Do you have a written Specific Marketing Plan designed to sell my property quickly and for top dollar?
11. Do you have service providers you can recommend who may be needed during the transaction? This is important as you want to work with an Agent who has contractors they can refer to you in case you need it, or something comes up. This keeps the process moving a lot smoother and saves time.
12. What is the single most valuable service you provide to a home seller just like me? This may be a tough question for some agents to answer, even ones who’ve been in the business a while. That is because most sellers don’t ask this question. Ultimately you want to know what is important to you and see if their response lines up with what you care about.
13. Why should I list with you? This is the #1 question to ask, as a good agent will know their value and worth and what they can offer you. This is where an agent gets to shine, so let them.