“The 18 most feared questions you should ask a Realtor before you list your home.”
Words of Caution: Not all listing Realtors are alike!
There are thousands of Realtors in the Puget Sound area. Most of them are wrong for you.
There are the part-timers who sell an occasional house because they need a little pocket change, or the occasional insurance salesperson that believes he or she can handle two careers. And then, of course, there’s always your sister’s friend, Sally, or your cousin, George, who could really use your business.
The truth is that 90 percent of those who become Realtors fail and leave the business within three years. The competition is too great. The legalities and complexities of the business are too much for them. They make mistakes, lose deals, make errors in contracts, create liability problems, and cost the people they represent time and money.
Few realize this, but the typical real estate agent spends more than 75 percent of his or her time trying to obtain new business through advertising, cold calling, door-knocking and other outreach efforts to strangers. In fact, these agents spend so much time soliciting business from strangers that once they list your home for sale, they usually have little time left to do much more than put your house into the multiple listing computer and order a sign for your yard.
If you’re like most people, the sale of your home represents one of the most important financial transactions you will ever make. If you want to get the most money for your home, in the shortest amount of time, and with the least amount of stress, it’s important that you select the best Realtor for the job.
This report is designed to arm you with 18 critically important questions to ask a Realtor before you consider hiring him or her to sell your home. The stakes are simply too high to choose poorly. Armed with these questions, logically organized into six areas of inquiry, you can be confident you won’t make a mistake.
1. What proof can you provide that you’re a successful listing Realtor?
2. What sales awards have you won?
3. How does your sales volume rank when compared to other listing Realtors?
4. Home many homes do you typically sell each month?
Note: More than 80 percent of real estate listings and sales are made by fewer than 10% of all Realtors. Those who sell the most have the most expertise, are the best organized, give the best service, have the fewest legal problems and, by far, have the best chance of selling your home for the most money in the least amount of time.
5. Do you have a full time assistant?
6. Who else belongs to your strategic alliance?
Note: Beware of Realtors who work alone. When Realtors get busy, the workload becomes extremely demanding. Try though they may, Realtors who work without assistants are the most likely to make mistakes. In real estate, mistakes can cost you thousands of dollars.
7. What kind of professional marketing education and experience do you have?
8. Precisely how will your marketing plan lead to a sale?
9. How many of your own listings have you sold recently?
10. What will you do to market my house to other Realtors?
Note: To properly represent a seller, a listing agent must be a qualified marketing expert. Contrary to what they say, few Realtors understand what marketing means, much less how to do it properly. Don’t hire a listing Realtor who doesn’t have a proven, professional marketing education and background.
11. What type of technological equipment do you own and operate
12. Do you work out of a fully equipped home office?
Note: Most Realtors work in poorly equipped real estate offices and are forced to wait in line to use out-of-date, inadequate equipment. In today’s sophisticated real estate market, a listing agent must own and be professionally trained to operate the best computer, copier, scanner and communications equipment available.
13. What marketing tools does your company offer than others do not?
Note: Just as all real estate agents are not alike, so too not all real estate companies are alike. Your best choice is an agent who works for a well-established, large firm that features strong marketing tools, powerful Internet resources and diverse advertising opportunities.
14. Are you qualified to advise me how to stage my home for sale?
15. Are you connected with affordable and available contractors who can assist me if needed on short notice to make staging improvements or to give bids and make repairs in response to a buyer’s home inspection?
16. What testimonials can you give me from your past clients?
17. May I call them?
18. What specific guarantees do you offer to ensure that the service you promise is actually provided?
Note: Beware of listing Realtors who promise much and deliver little. Demand accountability. Choose a Realtor who stresses the importance of extraordinary service, welcomes the opportunity to share client testimonials with you and urges you to call as many of their past clients as you wish.