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So how do you hire the right realtor?  How do you know it is the right one?

First of all there are many ways to check for a good realtor.  There are online reviews and you can ask friends and family for a referral of somebody they used.  I have on line reviews on Zillow, Trulia, Angies List, and on my websites.  Most realtors that you are interviewing should.

What are some of the qualifications your real estate agent should have?

1.)  Experience.  Hiring a newbie to sell your home may not be the smartest move.  Will they have the experience or know what to do when there is a problem?  Experience does matter.  Can they think outside of the box to get a home inspection issue resolved so your home deal moves forward?  Are they going to forget to tell you something important that is going to come back and bite you later on or that is going to cost you money?  Everybody knows new people make mistakes.  Are you willing to take the chance of a new real estate agent making a mistake on your $300,000 home sale?  Are you willing to have it cost you?

2.)  Full time.  Hiring a part time real estate agent to sell your home is not in your best interest.  Selling a home is a 24 hour deal with the internet.  Sure no real estate agent is going to answer the phone at 2 am but you want one that is responsive.  If they are at work and cannot have their phone on, how are they going to respond to the buyer calling to ask a question?  Or how are they going to answer if an offer comes in?  Do you wait for 8 hours?  There is a lot of back and forth during negotiations.  A realtor needs to be available.  Delays in negotiations sometimes de-rail a home sale.  So you want a real estate agent that can answer their phone and that responds quickly.  Somebody that is not dedicated to the job is not going to put their best effort into it. 

3.)  Successful real estate agent is a plus.   Marketing your home costs money.  Is your next agent going to spend money on facebook ads or pay an assistant to blog about your home?  If they are struggling or just starting out it is most likely they do not have the funds to the extra things sometimes needed to get your home sold.  Remember it is all about getting your home out in front of as many buyers as possible.  So the more places you are on the internet the more likely it will sell.

4.)   Not a dinosaur.  Todays technology is what is driving the business.  The days of newspaper and magazine ads are gone.  There is just a very small percentage of  buyers that view printed ads.  For example many agents spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars advertising in news papers and magazines.  It pays to get more listings but it has no real value for you the seller.  Just because your home is in a magazine there is a very small chance of somebody seeing it, then fitting their criteria, and then buying it.

The internet, phone, and the latest technology of marketing your home is what is selling your home.  Over 96% of buyers are looking on the internet.  Even older families that do not know how to use the internet have younger family members looking on the internet to find them a home.  You need a realtor that is well versed in marketing on the internet.  They need to be blogging about your home, doing facebook ads,  putting it on classified ad sites on the internet, and having multiple websites to market your home. 

If 96% or more of the buyers are using the internet then your agent should be putting 96% of their marketing dollars there.  I have 8 websites to showcase my buyers homes, websites that rank high on google.  That is what you are looking for.

5.)  Teams   Depending on how you look at it a team can be a plus or minus.  The mega large teams of the agent that is selling hundreds of homes is based on agents that take a lower percentage.  Many times they are newer agents.  Many times there is a huge turnover of the agents.  So it goes back to the experience of that agent of the team you hired.  Most likely the main guy is not coming to see you, he or she is busy managing the team not selling real estate.  You are getting shuffled off to somebody else.  What happens in most teams is that the sales process is handled by a different team member.  The agent, the processor, the closer.  If you are happy with going from one person to the next that is good.  But if you are looking for personalized service then a team may not be for you. Sure they sell lots of homes but with 35 or 50 agents the numbers are not as impressive.   Most times they are just average.  Teams could be good or bad depending on whether you and your home get the attention and follow up you need.  

6.) Communication and responsiveness.  There are some agents out there that just do not respond.  We deal with these agents and get frustrated.  If your agent is not responding to another agents questions about your property that is not a good thing.  I have had agents take 3 days to a week to respond to offer.  Or try to set an appointment and get no response.  Your home may be missing showings because of an unresponsive agent.   All of these are not in your best interest.  Call an agent, do not tell them what it is about, and just leave your name.  See how long it takes to get a return call.  Is their voicemail full?  You want somebody that responds to you and to other agents.

7.) What are the agents costs?  Some agents are just out to make the most possible.  Some even jack up their companies transaction fee to $500 or more.  They are just putting that extra money in their pocket.  Do you want to hire somebody that is lining their pockets before you even start?  It's your money and I want you to keep as much of it as possible. 

I hope some of the criteria has opened your eyes to what you are looking for in an agent.  If you have questions feel free to call or email me anytime.  (248)310-6239 or