8 Questions Real Estate Agents HATE!!
There’s a rule in the Real Estate world called the 80/20 rule. It says that the top 20% of all Real Estate Agents sell 80% of the homes. So, it goes without saying that since you will likely pay the same amount to work with a top Agent or a mediocre Agent, you might as well make sure you are working with the best Agent possible.
One way to accomplish this task is to ask the right questions. By asking the following 8 Questions, you can weed out the mediocre agents in a hurry.
Question #1 – Do you have a list of previous clients I could contact?
Always ask for references. As a matter of fact, ask for 5 or 6 references. Then, randomly pick one or two names from the list and call them. These folks should give you an idea of how proficient the Real Estate Agent is at selling homes.
Question #2 – How many homes do you sell each year?
This is probably the most important question you can ask. The average agent sells less than 10 homes per year. That’s less than one home per month! Why is this a problem? Simple – the amount of homes an Agent sells is a clear indication of their sales skills and talent.
Some Agents sell 50 homes per year and some sell 10. Imagine if you were shopping for a stock broker to manage your investments. Would you hire the stock broker who averages a 50% return on investments or a 10% return?
Question #3 – What can you offer to me that no other Agent can?
Every agent you speak to will claim to have the best service. Good service is a given. ANY agent should offer that. You should be looking for something unique. Some agents have special marketing plans for their listings, some offer guarantees on how quickly they can sell your home, etc… Try to weed out what makes this agent unique from any other agent you have spoken to.
Question #4 – How long will it take to sell my home?
Most agents are not psychics, so this will be impossible for them to answer. But, they can tell you how fast their previous listings have sold. Every home seller wants essentially the same thing. You want your home to sell fast and for top dollar. Unfortunately, you will have a hard time discerning whether the agent is being truthful or not in some cases. This is why we advise contacting your local Board of Realtors®. They maintain a listing of each agent’s statistics.
Question #5 – How many buyers are you working with right now?
The sad truth in Real Estate is that the majority of agents are scrambling to find new listings to sell, as opposed to finding buyers to purchase the listings they already have in their pipeline. This is because a listing is like money in the bank. When a Real Estate Agent lists your home, they know it will eventually sell, no matter how bad the market is. This is why it is critical that you know how many buyers the Agent is currently working with. The more buyers they are working with, the better.
Question #6 – How do you plan to market my home?
Specifically, you want to find out how the agent is going to attract buyers. In addition to the sign they place in your yard, what else do they do? Do they advertise in the homes magazines? The newspaper? Do they advertise on TV, radio or any other medium?
Make sure the agent gives you a specific marketing plan.
Question #7 – What is my exit strategy?
Find out how difficult it will be to cancel your listing contract if you decide the agent is not selling your home quickly enough. You are the boss, and it shouldn’t be a difficult process to fire one agent and hire another. Some agents will try to get you to sign a contract which forces you to pay a penalty if you cancel your listing before the contract expiration date. If your agent is truly worth their weight, they won’t force you to sign a contract like this. Always ask and get everything in writing.
Question #8 – Who controls your advertising?
Find out if the advertising is controlled by the agent or their broker. If your agent is not in control, your home may have to take a back seat in the marketing department, to all of the other listings from all agents in the brokerage. This is not what you want. Make sure your agent has control over their advertising.
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Bonus Tip! – If you have just read this report and are reconsidering hiring an agent because of the complexities involved in picking the right one, let us help! We offer a FREE “Agent Locator Service”. Because we are “in the business”, we know which agents are hot and which ones are not. We would be happy to introduce you to a top agent.