Top 20 Questions to Ask an Agent Before Signing a Contract
Now that the MLS is open to the general public, there is still a real value to hiring an experienced agent to help you sell your home. Do your due diligence and research your prospective agent to make sure they're the right fit for your needs. Go ahead and play “20 Questions.” A true professional won't be put off by your need to investigate. Compare as many agents as you need until you feel comfortable and confident with one. Through our many years of research, we've found that potential clients expect an agent to work as hard to sell their home, as they do to earn their money! Here are some time-tested questions we recommend that you ask a potential agent prior to signing on the dotted line.
1. Do you work full or part time as a real estate agent?
Will you be available for a last-minute showing and do you hold open houses?
2 .How many homes have you sold in my neighborhood in the past year or two?
Can you provide an accurate market analysis of my area and project reasonable results?
3 .How many sellers are you representing now?
Are you overloaded with clients, or will you be able to give me the individualized attention I deserve?
4. What aspects of the transaction will you personally handle and which will be delegated to others?
Will you hand off important details to an assistant or will I be dealing with you when it comes to the important details.
5. Are your fees negotiable?
Depending upon the circumstances, are you willing to be flexible with your terms?
6. At what price do you think my house will sell in the current market, and why?
Have you done a thorough market analysis including the school district, local amenities, assessments and neighborhood improvements to give an accurate overall picture? 7. Can you give me a written CMA and a list of homes currently on the market?
I want to compare and contrast my competition. Can you provide this for me?
8. What is your advertising and marketing plan for my house?
Do you have a good grasp of social media, video applications, local media that will be relevant for maximum exposure to move my home?
9. How long must I list my house with you?
If I don't see results within six months to a year, can I change agents?
10. Is your real estate license in good standing and have you ever been subject to a client complaint?
If you have had a complaint, how did you resolve it to the client's advantage?
11. Can you provide me the names and phone numbers of past clients as references?
Do you have Zillow and Trulia references? Are they current?
12. Do you work with stagers or will you stage my home?
I may need some extra help getting my home open house ready. Can you help me with this? Is there an extra charge for this service?
13. How often will you communicate with me?
Will you contact me via email, text, phone or all three? Will you give me a weekly report or a daily summary?
14. Why should I hire you over your competition?
What makes you stand out as a local Realtor and why should I trust you with this transaction?
15. May I see the documents I will have to sign?
Full disclosure is not only very important, it is the law. Can I count on you to have integrity?
16. What will be my closing costs?
I don't want any surprises at the end of the transaction. Will you define my closing costs up front?
17. Can you explain the closing process to me?
Even if I need you to explain this over and over, will you have the patience to explain the closing process to me? This is a life-changing transaction and I need to feel I'm in trusted hands.
18. Do you have a website and/or blog?
After the transaction, can I follow your trends and learn from your expertise or will the relationship end at the close of the sale?
19. ARE YOU A LOCAL REALTOR?
Do you know the nuances of the community? Do you understand my needs – be they for my aging parent or my school-age children?
20. What haven't I asked you that I need to know?
Will you take the time to research my needs and become an expert in what will make the difference for me between buying a home and investing in a neighborhood?
For more information, call 248-709-3786. Visit our new office at 1002 N. Main Street in downtown Rochester. Visit us on Facebook at Facebook.com/TheLindaReaTeam.