How to choose a REALTOR® to work with

Choosing a REALTOR® can be tough. You’re already stressed from moving, so you really don’t need to add on the stress of finding a trustworthy, knowledgeable person who will get you the best deal possible. Whether you’re buying or selling a home, it is important to know what is happening during the home buying/selling process. Consider these factors when deciding which REALTOR® you’d prefer in handling your home sale process.

What is your area of expertise? What has your company sold in my area?

When we talk area, we mean two different things: the area the home is located in, but also the realtor’s area of expertise. Choose a REALTOR® who is comfortable with your location and perhaps who has sold in the neighbourhood before. They will understand the prices, the desire and the market better than someone who hasn’t. As well, ask the REALTOR® what type of sale they specialize in. Most REALTORS® can sell all types of properties but that doesn’t mean they aren’t better at some than others.

How long does it take for your homes to sell?

It’s important to know, on average, how long it will take your home to sell so that you can plan around this. This way you know approximately when you will move, when you will receive the money, when you will be commuting a new route to work, etc. However, this is simply a guideline so you can plan accordingly. The sale of your home is never guaranteed, so it is always safe to plan for a longer selling period rather than a shorter one.

How will you advertise my home?

This is a necessary question to ask since there so many different forms of advertising these days. Whether your REALTOR® chooses print, digital, newspaper or the good old fashion ‘sold’ sign, you want to know ahead of time so you can decide if this works for you. Don’t be afraid to ask for additional marketing if your realtor is not offering something you want.

On average, how close is the selling price to the asking price when you are selling a home?

Some REALTORS® are better at negotiating than others; that’s why this is a key factor in choosing a REALTOR®. When you are researching different realty companies, ask them what their sold-to-list price ratio is. This will let you know how often they sell above or below the list price so you know what to expect when it comes to the sale of your home.

The bottom line is: get to know your agent before you hire him/her. It is crucial to ask these questions and think critically about if you want this person handling (likely) the single largest purchase of your lifetime. For more questions to ask your REALTOR® during the decision process, check out our blog: 10 Things You Need to Know Before You Hire an Agent.

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