Everyone, and I mean everyone, knows someone who is a real estate agent, if they’re not one themselves. That doesn’t make them the right Realtor for the job, or more importantly the right Realtor for you. Here’s a list of questions we want you to think about before you start interviewing agents:
- How busy are they? If they boast that they’re the number one agent in the area – no. That’s code for you’ll be waiting a long time for replies, and they’ll send an assistant to everything but the closing table where they’ll pick up their check. We prefer to work with agents who are skilled at what they do, but not so busy they are servicing 20 other listings at the same time.
- Did they give you any constructive feedback on your home or just yes you to death on how nice it is? The reality is, no home is show ready. There are things that everyone needs to do (even us!) to get ready to sell. You want to hear the ugly truth and you need someone who isn’t afraid to say it…and tell you the wallpaper, couch from your Aunt’s house, stained rug, and litter box needs to go.
- What are they wearing? I promise, I’m not that vain. But I have to tell you, I fully believe in eight seconds to make a great first impression. Be it your curb appeal, your home, and yes, your Realtor. You want someone who is well put together, that commands respect from the real estate community and buyers alike because they are representing you, and your investment. It’s a job interview and they should show up accordingly.
- Take a video! Ask them to give you a tour of your own home. Really. Don’t be embarrassed to ask! First, you won’t be there for showings so you want to see how they will showcase your house; highlighting its best features and spinning the flaws into something fabulous. How do they sound? How do they look? Also, you want to see if they are comfortable with technology which brings me to our next point.
- Are they tech savvy? There are so many great Realtors out there who have incredible experience because they’ve been around the block a time or two. Heck, they sold the block back in ’82. There is most definitely something to be said for hiring someone with experience but in 2019 you need access to every avenue (both traditional and new-age) to market your home to ALL the buyers. I’m talking every social media platform, insta stories, youtube videos, blogs and the like.
- Phone it in. To piggyback on #5, what kind of phone do they have and do they know how to use it? If there’s an out of town buyer interested in your listing who would like video walkarounds of each of the rooms – can they send them? Will they be able to text you back quickly when you’re in need of an update? This may sound like a no-brainer, but trust me when I tell you, there are some dinosaurs out there with antiquated flip phones (sorry, Gram, I love you!). Harsh, but true.
- Would you like them as a friend? No, I am not advocating that you hire your bestie because she just got her license and needs a guinea pig. I’m asking, are they likeable? Could you grab a beer with them? You are going to spend a lot of time with this person over the next few months and they will get to know the intimacies of your finances, your home life, and yes, your underwear drawer.
- Ask Around. What’s their reputation like? Most would tell you I’m a tough negotiator (Jon would say scary at times) and they’d tell you Jon will have the whole room doubled over laughing with an inappropriate comment during a tense moment in a home inspection. Get the dirt. A Realtor we used in NY was so well respected by even her most rabid competition that I knew we hired the right woman for the job.
- On the Clock. Do they make you feel like you’re their only client? They should. You should never feel rushed or like you’re asking too much. You’re not. This is the biggest investment of your life and they are in charge of it. I was overdue with our baby and was having pretty intense contractions during an open house, but I stuck it out because that’s what gets your home sold. And it worked – we had multiple offers that day and I was reviewing contracts in my hospital bed!
- What else do they bring to the table? Find out what their strengths are. Do they have a construction background? A keen eye for home design? An incredible network of buyers at their fingertips? What sets them apart from every other Tom, Dick and Harry? Scratch that. Every Tina, Dawn and Hannah? When the market gets tough, you need to get creative. If they can help re-paint a wall, style a room or have the most innovative marketing strategy you’ve heard yet – that counts.
We hope some of these tips help when it’s time to start the interview process and we hope you got a good laugh from our cheeseball head shot from a couple of years back. What would you add to the interview list? Share with us below!