Selecting A Listing Agent
Making the decision to sell your New Jersey home is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make. Choosing the right Realtor can make all the difference in your home sale success. Yet many homeowners make the decision to list their home with a Realtor without doing enough research to make an educated decision.
The most common mistake that homeowners make is hiring the agent that either gives them the highest opinion of value of their home, or offers to list for the lowest commission (or both). Neither is a good strategy for homeowners to screen agents upon.
Keep in mind that 90% of New Jersey homes are sold by 10% of the Realtors. Those highly productive agents generally do not work for the lowest commission. While commissions can be negotiable, basing your decision on the lowest fee may get you the lowest level of service.
Opinion of Value
Of course your, ask potential agents how much they think they can sell your home for. If two agents say $400,000 and the third says $500,000, pause before you hire that agent. It’s possible that the agent is “buying your listing” – overstating the market value just to get you to sign the listing agreement. The likely outcome of this scenario is that your home sits on the market with little activity, because it is not priced appropriately.
Perhaps the most important question to ask prospective agents: What is your marketing plan for my home? If the agent offers an undefined marketing plan and an MLS listing, they’re not worth their commission. A good listing agent should be able to provide you a written marketing plan with specific action items to market your home. And in the digital age, it should go well beyond holding an Open House.
Other Services & Support
Choose a listing agent who can and will provide other services. Will they help arrange a pre-listing home inspection, refer you to a home stager, and put you in touchwith a real estate attorney when the time comes? If not, then perhaps you are not hiring the right listing agent.
You should interview agents just as though you are hiring them for a job, because you are! And remember that you are doing the agent a favor by giving him your business.
It’s also important for an agent to have at least one assistant, so you get the service you need when you need it. At the same time, you don’t want to communicate through the assistant all the time; you want an agent with whom you can talk directly. So, find out up front how frequently you’ll receive updates from the agent.
Selecting A Listing Agent