REAL ESTATE ARTICLES
Tips For Selecting A Listing Agent
With the increasing number of homes on the market, it is important that you select the right agent to list your home. In a soft market, such as the market we are currently experiencing here in St George, Utah, it is going to take some effort to get your home sold. The days of dropping a sign in the ground and waiting for the phone to ring are OVER. We all know the standard question and answer series for interviewing a real estate agent to list your home:
Of course there are many other important questions to ask, but once you have interviewed a few agents what will you do next? Will you base your decision strictly on the questions and answers interview or will you do more? When you are buying a home, you will not buy the home the agent says you should, right? Sure their advice may assist you in the decision making process but you will do your part (or due diligence) to make sure the property is what you want, right? So why would you hire an agent to market your home strictly on what they tell you? Here are some tips to consider:
Did your prospective agent(s) bring a CMA (current market analysis)? The key word being "CURRENT". In a soft market, a report of property that sold 8 or 10 months ago means nothing today. You should have a list of what has sold, for what price, and what is currently listed (to size up the competition).
Once you have interviewed a few agents, wait a few days. An aggressive agent will follow up with a phone call or a visit within a day or two. An agent, who will not follow up with something as important as your listing, will surely not follow up for feedback on showing appointments. Try to call your agent. Don't call from the special direct line written on the back of his or her card, and don't call between "office hours". Try to call the phone number listed on one of the agents' yard signs on a Saturday around 5:30pm. After all, prospective buyers will not necessarily call Monday through Friday from 9-5. If the agent does not answer, leave a message...how fast is your call returned?
Ask your agent if they will provide a copy of a MLS listing they currently have. Be sure to get the "private version" so you can see what other agents see. What do you think about what you see? Is there an inviting description that is both well written and informative? How about the pictures included...are they flattering to the home? Are there multiple photos available online and are they of decent quality? Would YOU be interested in learning more about that home if YOU were a buyer?
The key to finding and hiring a great real estate agent to list your home for sale is to do a little homework of your own. You have to connect with your agent, but you must also do your part to be sure that your home is going to be represented in the best form. You do not want a listing with only 1 bad photo, and then if a buyer ACTUALLY calls requesting to see it, they get the voice mail to a box that is full and can not accept new messages. You want an aggressive agent that follows up and offers impressive marketing materials and has a marketing plan. If you are not impressed at the presentation, don't expect buyers to be impressed either.
Paula Smith is a REALTOR in St George Utah. I specialize in residential and investment real estate for St George, Hurricane, Santa Clara, Diamond Valley, Ivins, SunRiver, Washington, and LaVerkin Utah. If you have any real estate questions, or you would like to browse all property listed for sale, visit my St George Utah real estate website at: http://www.stgeorgeutproperty.com/