A real estate agent is your single best resource when buying or selling property. We do much more than just ensuring that all the paperwork and contracts are in order. Your home is your greatest asset, and we represent you at every turn. Whether buying or selling, we negotiate on your behalf and look out for your interests at all times. With a good Realtor® by your side, most of the stress of the transaction disappears, and you can look forward to enjoying your next exciting step.
The key is to find an agent who will work hard to exceed all of your expectations.
Asking strategic questions is a great way to start!
How Do You Choose A Realtor®?
Before hiring anyone, you can research online to see if their values align with yours. Top-notch skills are important, but personality, integrity, empathy, and striving to exceed expectations can matter even more. Ideally, you want to find someone in your area with many positive reviews from previous clients they have worked with.
Once you get it narrowed down to your top contenders, you can schedule a face-to-face or online meeting to find out more.
These are the questions you should ask any Realtor® before hiring them to represent you.
What is your track record of success?
Ask how many clients they have worked with in your area, and how many resulted in a successful transaction. Real estate moves quickly, and you need someone with a high success rate.
What sets you apart from other agents working in the local market?
Over the last two years, the real estate industry has been on fire. As a result, many new agents have jumped into the market, expecting that selling homes will be easy. Some even work part-time as agents while working full-time in a different field. If you want a successful transaction, look for someone with experience through all kinds of markets, up and down.
What is your marketing plan to sell my home?
Selling a home in today’s market is different from 10 years ago. Most buyers begin their search online and won’t even call for a showing until they’ve thoroughly researched their options. Your real estate agent should have a plan to reach these savvy buyers.
Posting your listing on the MLS® is a start. However, your agent should also have a vast online network and significant social media presence to expose your home to the widest pool of buyers.
Want to know more about how to successfully sell your home? Here are a few other resources to help:
- Selling Your Home With A Tailored Marketing Approach
- 5 Home Upgrades That Provide High Returns
- When Is The Best Time To Sell Your Home
What do you include in your services?
There’s more to real estate than buying and selling. A full-service Realtor® will handle everything for you to make your transaction go smoothly. This includes helping with cleaning and decluttering, arranging for repairs and updates, staging and working with lawyers and mortgage brokers on your behalf.
Will I be working with you directly or with a junior agent on the team?
Many real estate companies rely on a senior representative as the face of their business. However, you may not end up working with them at all. Once you’ve signed your listing agreement, they may pass you over to a junior agent with minimal experience.
When selling, what are your listing statistics compared to the average in the neighbourhood?
When selling your home, you want the best possible results to move forward to the next stage of your life. An agent with a solid track record for selling property above the average listing prices will give you the boost you need for your next goal.
When buying, will you invest the time to understand my needs and present me with the best options for properties that suit my criteria?
Your Realtor® shouldn’t just answer this question with a resounding, “Yes.” They should also ask you many questions to determine what you want and need. During the interview, ask about their plan for how they will help you find the ideal home. This involves excellent listening skills, empathy and a commitment to serving your needs.
How available are you to show properties for sale?
The biggest complaint about real estate agents is that they aren’t available enough. Buying a house isn’t always something that happens during working hours from Monday to Friday. Is your agent willing to show you homes in the evenings or even on weekends? You want someone who will be there for you through thick and thin, especially during a competitive market.
How technologically savvy are you?
If your agent doesn’t have a website or know how to use email, you might be at a disadvantage with other buyers or sellers. The market moves quickly, and many listings on the MLS® never even make it to print. Your agent should be current and understand the technology.
What type of updates will you provide me with?
There’s nothing worse than silence when you’re in the middle of the most important transaction of your life. Your agent should keep you informed at all times, even when there’s no news – or bad news.
Want more tips on how to buy even in a competitive market? You can read our Buyer’s Guide right here.
I don’t want to feel like just a transaction. What type of client care do you provide?
The best real estate agents are passionate and genuinely care for their clients. Your agent should be able to tell you all about the neighbourhoods, recommend high-quality contractors and even provide advice on home decor and style.
Does the Realtor have a solid reputation and work collaboratively with other agents?
In the modern market, networking skills alone can mean the difference between mediocre and outstanding results. When selling, your Realtor® can connect with other agents to line up a buyer already interested in your area. When buying, these connections can give you access to homes that haven’t even hit the MLS yet.
Are you familiar with the good neighbourhoods for families within my search area?
Working in different areas can give your agent perspective and help you get the best value when searching for your next home. Regardless of location, a keen understanding of the local market is essential. A good agent can analyze and interpret reports and market trends, both from experience and data.
Want to know more about some of the best areas in the GTA? Check out our Neighborhood Guides here.
Is your brokerage full service?
Some real estate agents will scream from the rooftops that they’ve got the lowest commission around. However, you want to be careful. Many companies only provide the bare minimum and leave you to do all of the heavy lifting to get your home ready for sale.
Do you work with a trusted team of service professionals that you can recommend?
Success is a team effort, and real estate is no different. Your agent can take almost everything off your shoulders, but you still need a mortgage broker, home inspector and a lawyer. You may need a trusted contractor to do some work before selling or moving into your new home. Ask your agent what kind of recommendations they can make. If they don’t have any, they may not have the greatest network.
What makes you a skilled negotiator?
Negotiation is critical to success in any transaction. When selling, a skilled negotiator can help you command top dollar. When buying, they can find ways to appeal to a seller without necessarily paying more.
Will your real estate agent get the best results for you? Here’s a good way to find out: Realtor® Red Flags You Don’t Want To Ignore.
What numbers do you have to back up your promises?
Every agent claims to be the best, but do they have the numbers to back it up? Ask your Realtor® what awards they have won and when. Look for superb results over the course of several years so you know the agent can perform in any market.
Do you want to work with a Realtor® that is consistently in the Top 10 for Keller Williams across Canada? Find out more about the Tanya Crepulja Team here.