Are you considering planning on selling your home and wondering what to ask when hiring a real estate agent? Stay tuned because I’m going to be answering a lot of questions on what questions to ask a real estate agent when you’re interviewing them.
Okay, so you’re going to put the house on the market and it’s time to go ahead and call up the four or five different agents that you’re familiar with and interview them, set them up. Well, here are some great questions to actually ask the agents when you sit down with them. Now, once again, this is under the assumption that you’re planning on listing the house, not necessarily buying one. Please understand there is a difference between a listing agent and a buyer agent, two totally different disciplines, although they’re both realtors, totally different disciplines.
So the first thing that you really need to investigate is how many listings do you as an agent actually take and manage and close? That’s totally different from going out with buyers and helping them find a home. So that’s the number one thing that you’re really going to want to ask them is, are you a listing agent, and how many houses do you list every single year and close? All right, so that’s going to be the first thing that you’re going to want to make sure of.
Then you’re obviously going to want to make sure they have a great track record with those listings that they actually carry. Make sure that they’re in the area that you’re in. Just because I listed and sold a house here in Cherokee County doesn’t mean that I’m going to be able to do the same thing down in Henry County. I don’t know Henry County all that well. And typically what we’ll do is we’ll either have an agent down in that area that’s very familiar with Henry County that we’ll have managed that listing, opposed to us trying to do it from Cherokee County. So make sure that they’re familiar with your area, they’ve got a great track record.
Another great question to ask is, based on how many listings that you take, how many actually sell? So you’re trying to get a ratio there or percentage. Believe me, one of the games that agents play out there is they’ll take as many listings as they possibly can, regardless of the price or the circumstances or anything like that ’cause all they’re trying to do is they’re just trying to get signs up all over the place in a particular area. They’re trying to flood the market with their signs not really caring if they sell it or not. Their primary goal is to get their signs up and then they try and attract buyers off of those signs and it’s kind of a branding technique. So make sure that you find out based on how many listings you take and close. So to give you an example of what a really good ratio would be is we actually sell 98% of the listings that we actually take to market. That is high, is very high compared to the average. I think the average is right around 68% the last time I checked, 68%, we’re actually at 98%, so we’re beating the market. So make sure that you understand what the end game is with that agent that you’re actually working with.
The second thing is, is find out what their listing price compared to the sale price ratio is. So if they list it for a certain price, how close to that are they actually getting? That goes in and talks to their negotiating and their pricing strategy itself. We’re at 96.4%. I think the market right now is right in there. We’re actually trending right around there. I think it’s a little bit less than that. I think it was like 94.2% the last time I checked. So we’re actually beating the market by a couple of points there. However, because the market is the market right now, it’s pretty hot, everybody’s a little bit high but you definitely want to see their negotiating skills and you’ll be able to determine that by their list price to sale price ratio.
Another thing that we always ask is how long does it take to sell a home? That gets relayed into days on market. Everybody’s days on market are pretty low right now just because of the lack of inventory but that’s always good to ask. How long is it taking you to actually sell a home?
And then I would ask questions about the structure of their company. Are they a single agent or are they with a team? And let me tell you, a single agent is the hardest job in this industry because you have so many things that are going on. You’re going to drop the ball. They’re going to drop the ball. It’s impossible for them to keep track of every single timeline and all the tasks that are involved from the time they put the sign in the yard to the time you get to the closing table. There are so many moving parts and there are so many tasks that need to be completed that a single agent really has a hard time completing all of those in a satisfactory way. So make sure that they’ve got support, make sure that they’re possibly on a team, and then that there are roles defined for every team member that’s going to help you that are also assigned to you as part of that transaction. So that’s really, that’s really a key point.
All right, another great question to ask is to find out what percentage of listings that they actually work compared to buyers that they actually work. So to give me an example, if we were to take all the sales that we complete in one year, 70% of the sales that we complete at Townsend Realty Group are with listing agents. So those are houses that we put on the market that we actually sold. The other 30% are buyers that we worked with. So that’s important to really give you an understanding of where their emphasis is, where their business processes and procedures and models are kind of geared around. As a seller, you really want to make sure that the majority of their business is working with listing clients, okay? So that’ll kind of give you an idea.
The last thing is, find out what their schedule is. Are they available on weekends? Do they work at night? We’ve had a couple situations where people will list homes and then all of a sudden they find out that no one’s available on Sundays to answer the phone. So finding out what their schedule is and who’s covering what is going to be another critical question to ask them.
I hope this helped you figure out what to ask when hiring a real estate agent. Hey, make sure you subscribe to our YouTube channel if you like this and you want some more information like this on an ongoing basis. Give me a thumbs up if you thought this was helpful. And hope everybody’s having a great day. Thanks.
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