Who you select to be your real estate agent when selling your home will have an impact on the
selling price, stress you experience throughout the process and how quickly your home sells.
But consumers also don’t have a lot to go off of when selecting an agent.
Every agent will tell you that they are good at selling homes and will quote statistics for annual
home sales. The problem with that statistic is, that just because you can sell homes doesn't
mean you do it stress-free and for the best possible price.
There are ways to review a real estate agent’s qualifications to better understand the quality of
the home sale experience. Just follow these guidelines.
1. Talk to Multiple Agents First
Selling a home is a big deal. And yet, based on data from the National Association of Realtors
most home sellers (77%) only talked to one agent before choosing them to sell their home.
To get a better feel for what to expect from a real estate agent, talk to more than one. You’ll see
the difference between the mediocre salespeople and the really good ones. As you talk to them,
consider how personable they are.
As you look for agents to interview, here are some sources to create a short list:
- Ask for referrals from friends, family and neighbors
- Search for agents online and see what people are saying about them
- Keep marketing materials you’ve received or picked up from local agents in your
2. Complete Thorough Online Research
When reviewing online information about the agents on your shortlist, don't just read reviews
from one website. Be thorough in your search for real experiences others have had with the
Read multiple review sites and be sure you’re reading the good and the bad reviews so you have
a better feel for what people loved and what people found frustrating about working with the
real estate agent.
You should be looking for three things in your online research:
- Real estate experience
- Similar home sales (real estate agents might specialize in selling homes in certain styles,
locations or values)
- How many properties like yours the real estate agent has sold
- How recently the agent has sold a home like yours
During your conversations with the agent, clarify whether the agent represented the buyer or
seller in these transactions. There are nuances to the buying and selling process and you want
to ensure they are experienced in home sales.
3. Interviewing Real Estate Agents to Sell a Home
Preparing for an interview with a real estate agent you’re considering partnering with to sell
your home will be like preparing for a job interview. You want to consider what matters most to
you about the home sale process and ask questions related to those items.
Here are some questions you might consider asking real estate agents during your interviews.
- How many homes have you sold like mine in relation to size, property type, value and
- How do you come up with your suggested listing price?
- Are you willing to negotiate your commission rates?
- Can you provide me with a list of references from similar homeowners you’ve
represented when selling a home?
- How do you plan to market my home sale?
4. Compare Marketing Plans
Once you’ve interviewed your top candidates for a real estate agent, you can begin reviewing
important information to arrive at the best realtor for your needs. Their marketing plan for your
home will be an important detail.
Showcasing a home is an art. And only the best agents do this really well. The minimum you
should expect from your agent includes:
- Scheduling a time for professional photos of your home
- Professionally written property descriptions
- Posting the listing to all major real estate sites
- Open houses
- Property signage
But the best agents know that there’s more to effective home sales than just the basics. Agents
with more robust home sales marketing plans might also offer:
- Video tours
- Drone photos
- Home staging
- Recommendations for improving the home’s value with renovation projects and
The agent with the best overall plan and tools for marketing your home should rise to the top of
your list. These agents are generally skilled in getting top dollar for homes.
5. Look Out for Red Flags
Some real estate agents will make it easy for you to shorten your list because they’ll say or do
something that will eliminate them from the running. Some red flags to look out for include:
- Unrealistic list prices. This will likely just make the sales process longer because you’ll
have to go through price adjustments to finally find a home buyer.
- Avoid real estate agents who charge a dual agency rate. Some real estate agents are
willing to represent both the home buyer and seller, which is known as a dual agency.
But when an agency is representing both parties, they can't look out for the interests of
both parties equally.
- Contracts that have no option to cancel. In that case, you’ll have no means to keep your
realtor on their toes and challenge them to be their very best. Ask questions about the
contract before signing to ensure you still have some leverage.
If you’re looking for a trustworthy and experienced real estate agent in Charleston, South
Carolina, contact The Robertson Team. We will help you sell your home using leading marketing
tools and tactics. Contact us
now to learn more.