First and foremost, a successful relationship is built upon trust and honesty. The media spotlight has been on commission rates and realtors costing too much money but you would be surprised to know that the #1 complaint that consumers have reported about their real estate experience is communication.
If you do not feel as though you can communicate with your realtor, how can you be confident you are on the same page and they are looking out for your best interests? Most consumers choose a realtor based on referral or seeing their advertisements and sometimes it is too late before you realize your realtor isn’t doing what you expected of them.
I always recommend (even to my own clients) that you interview three different realtors to allow you to see who you connect with most. Along with that personal connection, you want to make sure that the resources you are putting towards a realtor are going towards good use. I have highlighted the most critical areas of importance below.
Pre-listing Strategy: What plan does your realtor have for your home prior to listing it? Think about it for a moment, a home which is effectively priced and shows well compared to the competition will sell. Your realtor should be allocating resources towards design consultations, staging, painting, repairs and cleaning services.
Commitment to Service: Ask your realtor, who will be taking care of my listing? If I pick up the phone and have a question will I be speaking with you? Will you be hosting our open houses? If you are someone who likes to have one-on-one service you need to clarify with your realtor what it is you are seeking from them.
Manageable Client Base: The fact is service gets diluted when you are too busy. Although teams may streamline the process in certain aspects, no sales representative working under a big ticket agent can do the job better than they can. You have to ask yourself the question “do you want to be a big fish in a small pond, or a small fish in a big pond?”
Marketing: MLS accounts for majority of the web based traffic your home gets, but a realtor should have an effective web based marketing program of their own. Personal websites and social media platforms are a must in the technology age we are in. Your realtor should have a firm understanding of what tools are available to help showcase your listing to a wide audience in a cost-effective way.
Track Record: Have your realtor share with you what value they bring to the table. Are they getting a better sale/list price than the average realtor? Are their listings selling faster than those comparable in the market? Do they have previous clients who are willing to speak with you on the phone and speak about their real estate experience? Numbers usually paint a very good picture about a realtor’s abilities.