At one point in time, your home was the perfect fit. Three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a cozy little breakfast nook and a shade tree out front. But now, you’re moving up/downsizing/relocating, and your home no longer fits your needs – despite how much you loved it when you bought it.
It’s totally natural to feel all kinds of emotions when it comes time to sell. “It’s not you, it’s me!” you might weep as you wipe your tears on your window treatments. Okay, maybe that’s a bit dramatic. But getting a little sentimental is completely normal!
As you prepare to release your emotional grip on your home, you’ll need to consider who will step in as your real estate guru. This person will be responsible for marketing your property, dealing with buyers and their agents, negotiating on your behalf, and standing by your side at the closing table.
Because you’ll be working so closely with your listing agent, selecting the right one will be crucial. When you hire a listing agent, you’re essentially saying, “Hey, I trust you to represent me in the biggest dollar value transaction I’ll make in my lifetime. Are you cool with that?” Not exactly a decision you can make by hopping on Yelp.com and going with the first name you see.
That’s why we put together this handy checklist. Follow the tips below to find a top real estate agent that will make the selling process as smooth and successful as possible.
Don’t try to sell your own home
You may think you’re the best person to sell your home. After all, you know it best! But according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homes sold with the assistance of a listing agent sell for 3 to 11 percent more than homes sold “by owner.”
Consult your personal network
Ask friends, family, and co-workers if they’ve worked with any top-notch listing agents. Even if they can’t point you toward “the one,” they might be able to help you avoid someone they had a bad experience with.
Look around your neighborhood
If you notice that a particular real estate agent dominates the “For Sale” signs in your neighborhood, there’s a good chance he or she specializes in homes like yours and has a good understanding of the local market.
Internet presence is key
Finding a real estate agent with a stellar Internet presence (website, blog, social media, etc.) is so important. In a world where most buyers search for homes online, being tech-savvy is an absolute must.
Narrow your selection
Contact your top three agents and ask them to show you their sales history, marketing strategies, and success stories. With this information in hand you’ll be able to compare your choices and make your decision with a clear conscience.