How to interview agents
Always interview at least two agents. (The only exception is if one agent is highly recommended by people whose opinion you respect).
If you do not like either agent, call a third. Keep going until you find the best agent. If you have to interview a dozen agents, do so. Do not underestimate the importance of choosing the best agent. And do not do what many sellers do – select the agent you dislike the least. Good agents exist. When you know what to look for, you will find one.
When you meet agents, look at their personal presentation. Do they appeal to you? Do they seem like nice people? Listen to your instincts. Show each agent around your home. Watch their level of interest by seeing if they ask questions or make notes.
After agents have seen your home, make them feel comfortable and then ask the question: “What will you do to get the best price for my home?”
Some agents will say, “How much do you want? or What figure did you have in mind?” Do not answer these questions. Not yet. You are conducting a job interview. Simply say, “Before we talk about a specific price, I would like you to tell me what your agency can do to get the best price for us.”
Do not be intimidated or allow yourself to be pressured into doing anything that doesn’t feel right. It is your home and you are in charge. You have two ways of dealing with agents. For agents you like, ask what they will do for you. For agents you don’t like, just say, “I have another agent coming soon. So thank you for coming around. I will call you if I need you.” And then move towards the front door. They will leave.
When you lack knowledge, agents can easily confuse or mislead you. But when you have a valuation and you have read this book, you can not be so easily confused or misled.
When the agent begins his or her presentation, you will soon know if you have the right agent. If the presentation is about auctions or open inspections or if you are asked to pay money in advance for advertising, show them this book and say, “Have you read this?” Watch their reaction.
If their answers do not satisfy you, you have not found the best agent.
But when you find an agent who cares about you and demonstrates this – in proof, not words – and you feel comfortable, you are ready to make the most important decision in selling your home – choosing your agent.
The above is an extract from the book Real Estate Mistakes.