29 Critical Questions to Ask a Realtor® Before You List—Part Two

6. “How long have you been in the business?”

There is no hard and fast rule for what to look for here. An agent may have been a licensed real estate professional for 15 years, but only selling part-time and never really an active seller—maybe only handling one or two transactions a year. Whereas another agent may have only just become licensed one or two years ago, but they have a background in real estate finance, working in real estate law for a number of years or they have been a private real estate investor and have bought and sold more than 20 homes themselves over the last 10 years.

Either way, you need to find someone with an in-depth knowledge of the legal ins and outs of the business, as well understanding the characteristics of the local market and has demonstrated competence and professionalism in getting homes sold.

7. “What professional organizations do you belong to?”

At the minimum there should be a fully-licensed professional who is a member of the local real estate board and Multiple Listing Service, as well as the Sstate and National Association of Realtors®. Local community groups and businesses associations may also be a pluse in terms of getting networking and insights into the community. All these things are important, however the most important thing to consider is making sure your your agent is focused on selling your home.

8.“Do you have a personal assistant or other support staff working with you?”

Some agents employ an assistant or staff. This doesn’t necessarily mean better service, but it can be an indicator that the agent treats selling real estate as a business. By employing someone to handle the small details, he or she can devote more time to serving your needs.

Be sure you understand from the beginning how much participation and interaction you can expect from your agent, and how much will be handled by someone else. After the listing, you may be okay just interacting with an assistant or staff member. Just be sure you don’t start to feel “passed off”, and that you stay informed in what the agent is doing to sell your home.

9. “Do you have any questions for me?”

In the interview, look for an agent who asks pointed, specific questions, not someone just filling-in blanks on a form. You want someone already thinking about your situation and creating a plan of action specifically for you, instead of using a cookie-cutter approach. You need to feel comfortable with them, and know that you can rely on their expertise.

10. “What marketing approach will you use for my home?”

Despite having the same basic marketing tools at their disposal – a Multiple Listing Service, company tours, Board of Realtors® tours, etc. – every real estate professional will have a different marketing strategy.

Learn each agent’s marketing philosophy and determine what will work for you. Make sure the agent you choose doesn’t rely on the same marketing tools for every sale; what worked for yesterday’s seller may not get the results you want today.

The key is to finding an agent who will use ALL the tools that are available to your best advantage.

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