Sellers beware: Don’t make these 3 mistakes when hiring a listing agent

It’s time to pack your bags and say goodbye to your home sweet home. But before that, you have an important decision to make: choosing a qualified realtor to sell your abode.

“Well, let me call my sister-in-law!” is a common expression in a big city where there could be hundreds (if not thousands) of realtors to choose from. And some of them could very well be your family or friends.

But choosing a listing agent based on a personal relationship is a big mistake, and you’ll find out why! In this article, we’ve identified this and other mistakes that sellers should avoid.

1. Deciding solely on the highest list price

This has to be the gravest error. No agent can tell you the exact list price of your house. They can give you active sales, pending sales, and comparable sales for reference. The right listing agent will suggest an asking price to attract the prospective buyer.

However, the actual sales price that your house is sold for also depends on the buyer. That said, you don’t have to feel intimidated. According to a 2019 survey by the National Association of Realtors, “home sellers received a median of 99% of their asking prices.”  

If the potential real estate agent has no stats to support their list price, they may be distorting the truth. Instead, look for an agent who has helped their clients attain more than 95% of their asking price.

2. Choosing a listing agent from family or friends

You may trust a friend or family member with selling your home if they have the right qualifications and experience. But choosing kin without a proven track record can cost you thousands of dollars. Sure, you can offer them an opportunity by interviewing them just like any other candidate.

Since they love you, they would want the best fit for you. If they do have the experience, make sure they can view your place through an unbiased lense and not let your bond get in the way of making the right decision.

3. Judging a book by its cover

This is one of the most common yet overlooked mistakes that sellers tend to make when finding a realtor. A potential agent shows up in a dope suit—looking all professional as if they mean business. It can be hard not to get carried away by appearances.

But you should never judge a listing agent by their looks. Looking like a million bucks doesn’t guarantee you making bank on the sale. Focus on their prior experience, details on their recent transactions, and how they plan on selling your home if they get the deal.

Go one step further and seek references before hiring them. A fair warning – they are likely to give you cherry-picked names who have only nice things to say. So, during the interview, ask for the addresses and owners’ names of the last 10 homes they sold.

Steer clear of these common but critical mistakes when selecting your next realtor and you’ll be ahead of the game.

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