Has the time come for you to sell? Well then I imagine you’ll be on the lookout for a real estate agent to help you make the deal of a lifetime.
Since this time of year is perfect for showing off your digs, there’s sure to be a ton of competition, so finding yourself a good agent could mean the difference between getting a great deal, or not getting one at all.
So what do you look for in an agent? What are the defining qualities that separate the mediocre from the great? Glad you asked, because I’ve put together a list of 4 essential features that make an excellent agent.
1. A killer CV
This might seem like a no-brainer, but when looking for your next agent you want to make sure they have an excellent resume. Check to see what properties they have recently managed to sell – were they in your area? How much did they sell for? Did they sell before going to auction? All these things will give you a good indication of an agent’s competency, skills, and style in how they sell.
If you want to get down to the nitty gritty, ask them some tough questions. Quiz a prospective agent on their marketing plan and what strategies they’re likely to implement in the sale of your property. If you’ve found yourself the perfect candidate then they should very easily be able to give you in depth responses to these questions and more. Keep in mind that real estate agents are dealing with seriously big money, and likely the biggest transaction most people will make their entire lives. So at the end of the day there’s really no excuse for them not to know their stuff, inside and out.
If they’re not living, breathing, and dreaming property sales, you might want to move on to the next candidate.
2. Communication is key
This might also seem rather obvious but it can be a little more difficult to put your finger on than a stellar resume. Although there might not be a rule book outlining what makes for successful communication as everyone has their own style, there are some key characteristics you should look out for.
A good agent will have developed the ability to build rapport with those they talk to. They will listen and absorb information, but ask plenty of questions to gather the necessary information. If you come across an agent who does nothing but talk at you with little regard for your perspective you should probably say ‘goodbye’, sooner rather than later. It’s important to find someone that has learned how to build trust, because it’s going to be a lot harder to convince anyone to part ways with such large sums of money, if the representative of the property seems untrustworthy. You don’t want prospective buyers to leave a conversation with your agent thinking, “what are they hiding?”.
What’s more, you also want to find an agent that maintains a superb level of communication from beginning to end. If they ace your first meeting and make a brilliant impression but never call to keep you updated or fail to inform you of leads or pertinent information then you’ll need to start your search again.
3. Marketing matters
As mentioned in my first point, a potential agent should know their stuff, and marketing is a huge part of that. So before you sign on the next agent you meet because of their oh so charming and charismatic ways, get them to give you the low down on their marketing plans for your property. When listening to their ideas, make certain that you’re not being given a cookie-cutter response.
An agent who knows how to sell will know everything there is to know so keep an ear out for hard statistics for your local market, honest opinions regarding the vale of your home, and a clear strategy that will leverage your marketing budget as efficiently as possible.
4. Real world research
After all is said and done, an interview and a CV will only really give you so much information to go on. So what better way to assess your next agent than by watching them work. A month or two before you plan on selling, pick out a few agents that seem like they’d be a good fit for you and your property, then watch them on the job. Attend one of their auctions and talk to them about the local market. This is the perfect way to ascertain how a potential agent is likely to perform with your property, and gives you the best chance to see how they interact with others and present themselves in public.
So now you know what to look out for, you’re in the best position you can be to find your dream agent, and when you find them… give me their number, would you?