Q: How do I hire the best agent for the job?
A: Ask the right questions.The following is a list of questions you should ask every potential agent you interview. It is tempting to just go with your gut, but there is more to being a good agent than likability. Would you hire a heart surgeon to operate on your ticker simply because (s)he was nice? Of course not! Hire an agent or team who knows their stuff and will get the job done right.
1. How long have you been in the business? // How long have you been licensed in this state?
2. How many listings did you represent in the last 12 months? // How many buyers?
3. How long does your average listing take to close? // How does this compare to the average for this community?
4. What is the average list price to closing price ratio for your listings? // How does this compare to the average in this community?
5. Tell me about your experience in the _____ neighborhood/suburb.
6. Tell me about a transaction of yours that did not close (either listing or sale.) What happened? (Every experienced agent will have a story about one (or more) that got away – their answer will help you gauge their professional maturity level.)
7. What will you do to market my home?
8. Who else is on your team? Do you work with a transaction coordinator? Professional photographer? Team assistant?
9. Who will I talk to when I have a question or concern? // What is the best way to communicate with you, and how long is your usual response time?
SELLERS: If I decide to work with you, we’ll need to negotiate a listing fee that is fair to both of us. What dollar amount or rate would you open negotiations with?
BUYERS: Your fee as a buyer’s agent ultimately affects the price I’ll pay for my house. If I decide to work with you, I’d like to negotiate your fee in advance (a fee that is fair for both of us), and for you to agree in writing to credit me at closing for any amount above our agreed upon fee that is offered by the seller. What dollar amount or rate would you open negotiations with?
11. What makes you a better agent than the 3 other people on my interview list?