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Getting Started

Questions to ask your next Realtor:

How many years of experience do you have?
Work with an experienced agent with a solid track record of sales in your area.

Do you work full time or part time as a real estate agent?
Full time is preferable.

What do you know about the area?
How long have you sold homes in this area?

Agents who specialize in your area are more likely to deliver a larger number of potential buyers to your door.

Do you have any buyers for this neighborhood?

How would you assess the current market for selling?
A good agent will give an unbiased evaluation of the state of the market, and will know how to get the best price for your home. Weigh it against an estimate of your home’s value.

At what price would you list my house?

Will you tell me my house is worth more just to get the listing?

How many agents in your office will be working for me?

How many other clients (sellers and buyers) do you represent?
You want an agent who can give you as much time as you need. Keep in mind, however, that the busiest agents are often the most efficient.

Will you handle all aspects of my transaction or will you delegate some tasks to a sales associate or administrative assistant?
If you work with a busy agent, a knowledgeable assistant can be invaluable when you have questions. Busy agents also often top producers in an area, but you may not get as much personal attention as you want.

Can I cancel my listing agreement at any time if I’m not satisfied with your work?

Do you specialize in older homes?

What do you think are the best features of my home and this area?

Do you like my home?

Do you work much with houses that need a little or a lot of fixing up?

Are you familiar with 1031 exchanges to defer capital gains tax?

Can I have a copy of your standard listing agreement?

What is your ratio of sales price to list price?

Will you give me a list of homes you sold in the last 12 months?
The list should contain addresses, property types, names of sellers or buyers, list prices, sale dates, and sale prices. If you’re undecided about an agent, contact the agent’s former clients and ask whether the agent was easy to work with, whether they feel they got a good price and a good contract, and whether they would use the agent again.

What is the average days your homes are on the market before selling?

May I see a copy of your marketing plan?

What is your negotiating strategy?

Do you have any references with you today?

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