Selling your home can be a chaotic time. You know you need a strategic asking price, but you still want buyers to offer top dollar. Interviewing your realtor can help ensure that you’re on the same page from the get-go. If your realtor can confidently answer these 11 questions, there’s bound to be a big “SOLD” sign in your future!
1. Can you show me the CMA for my area?
For the real estate industry, this is square one. You need to understand the lay of the land and selling prices for other homes in your neighborhood if you’re going to get good offers. Cross-reference what your realtor says about your property with a CMA, or Comparable Market Analysis report.
2. Are you working solo or with a team?
There isn’t exactly a “right” or “wrong” answer here, but how realtors answer can reveal a lot. Will they be someone who answers their phone 24/7? Or do they have office staff to help field their calls? Try to get a sense of their communication style upfront to make sure it fits with your expectations.
3. What makes you different from other agents?
If your realtor didn’t make this clear before, now’s their chance to shine. Maybe they have a passion for educating homeowners about the area—which can help highlight your home’s address. Or perhaps they have a niche working with high-end buyers?
4. Can you explain your realtor fees?
Real estate agents are typically paid with a percentage of your home’s final sale. This usually benefits sellers because it means your realtor has an actual vested interest in how much your home goes for. The exact percentage can change between realtors, so confirm their rate before you start working together.
5. On average, how long does it take for your listings to sell?
The real estate market is always changing, but looking at the recent seasons can give you a general idea of what to expect with your home—especially if the realtor has worked around your neighborhood before. Can you afford to have it on the market for a couple months? Or do you need to sell ASAP?
6. And when they sell, how close is the final price to the asking price?
If their sellers get the full asking price the vast majority of the time, you’ll probably feel more confident that their listings that are fair. (And have a better idea of what to expect out of your own property.) You don’t want to be tempted with a high asking price, just to get knocked down when buyers won’t bite.
7. How do you market your sellers’ homes?
You’re hiring your realtor for their connections and industry resources. The best realtors should have lots of marketing techniques up their sleeve. Check to see if your realtor will hold open houses to get traffic through the door, or if they’ll post your listing online or through other media outlets.
8. In your opinion, what are my home’s selling points?
It’s always nice to get some compliments! Make sure your agent can speak to the good qualities in your home—they might even say things that you hadn’t thought of. If they know what’s “hot” for buyers in your area, they’ll be interested to promote those aspects.
9. What drawbacks do you see for this home?
A good realtor will be able to share the tough love too. It might be hard to trust someone who can’t be realistic with you and (politely) share the cons as well as the pros for your home. If they can help you improve your listing, you’ll want to hear it—especially when it can increase your asking price!
10. Can you recommend any prep work before we list?
Here’s the kicker. Your realtor should be able to give concrete advice for how to move forward and position your listing to sell—all while keeping your timeline and ROI in mind. If they’re well connected, they might even be able to refer you to qualified home professionals.
11. What will it cost to sell?
You might need to make a couple investments to get your property in peak “showing” condition. Does you realtor have estimates for sprucing up your front yard? How about for general cleaning services before showings? It’s nice to know these numbers if you don’t want to do the work yourself, but the one thing you don’t want to “DIY” is home staging in Indianapolis.
For today’s sellers, professional home staging is more important than ever before. The area is booming, and professional staging can definitely help your listing stand out in the crowd. Ask your realtor about the benefits of staging, and follow up on these other 11 questions to find an agent that represents you and your home in the best way possible. A little investment upfront can go a long way in getting your property sold on time—and for the best price.
Ready to take your listing to the next level? Contact Home Matters today for all your home staging and design needs!