Selling a house is a daunting prospect for many people; especially if they have remained in the same house and area for a long period of time. Getting the right price in the required time frame is the key objective, and finding a realtor that can support and help you achieve this is important.
Our team at Property Matters are Florida real estate experts and we pride ourselves on delivering client service excellence with a focus on trust, honesty and integrity. With this in mind, we believe that there are five important questions any seller should be asking their realtor in order to find the agent that is right for them. If they are unable to answer them to your satisfaction, you have to trust your gut feeling; are they the right group for you?
1. What Can I do To Improve Chances of Selling?
You must trust your agent to represent your best interests. Therefore, they need to be honest with you about ways in which you can improve your house to help it sell. They should know what can be effective in your area, the neighborhood and what potential new buyers are looking for. Ask them what advice they would give. This could include:
- Covering personal choices of color or wallpaper with a neutral color.
- De-cluttering as much as possible. The less clutter the larger the rooms will feel.
- Removing personal photos helps as it allows a potential buyer to imagine it as their home as opposed to seeing it as yours.
- If possible, removing old window treatments that block natural light.
- If any items are not being included in the sale, try to have them removed before showing the house. It’s a lot nicer than having to argue with a buyer further down the line if they have fallen in love with a light fitting for example.
- Wherever possible, make sure any maintenance issues have been resolved.
2. How Will You Market My Home?
Realtors deploy different methods to market properties, and with the rise in online, digital and social media, these methods have rapidly changed in the past few years. It is therefore important that your home is marketed efficiently to appeal to the maximum number of potential buyers. Ask your agent if they are considering new techniques, in addition to the traditional marketing techniques. such as networking, newsletters and print advertising. New techniques that we favor at Property Matters USA include:
- Hard-working website – a modern, easy-to-navigate site that showcases your property and makes it more ‘discoverable’ such as ‘Featured Property of the Week’.
- Social Media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter featuring your house in adverts, boosted posts and on-going content posts that use targeted demographic information to reach the right audience.
- 3D Videos and Floor Plans – providing potential buyers with a way of viewing the house from the comfort of their own home.
- Online Advertising: ensuring that your property appears in places where your potential buyers will be looking such as online lifestyle and luxury magazines and sites.
3. How Do Your Fees Work?
If you are selling your home, you would be asked to pay commission to both your agent and the buyer’s agent when your house closes. There is no such thing as an industry standard when it comes to what fees you can expect to pay. At Property Matters, we ask for a commission of 6% to be shared by both parties.
4. Request a CMA
Setting the right price for your home is vital if you are going to achieve your selling goals. A good realtor will help to set the right price by appraising the property and combining this with their knowledge of the local area. This appraisal is a CMA or Comparative Market Analysis – it’s worth noting that this is not a real estate appraisal which is a comprehensive evaluation performed by an independent professional appraiser. Your realtor will create you CMA using a blend of experience, research from the MLS, knowledge of the neighborhood and also the condition of the house. The final report will feature all of these factors and suggest a price range. This will give you a feel for how your house compares to current listings, against which your house will be competing, and closed sales which have recently been concluded. This will also give you a good idea as to the approximate value and will be a good indicator as to the amount of debt a bank appraiser will be able to authorize to a potential purchaser of your house.
5. How Will We Work Together?
An efficient agent who keeps you updated and in the loop will make your life a whole lot easier. Ask your agent about how they prefer to work, and what time-saving tools they are using to enhance the client experience. A culture of ‘client first’ should be the priority, and you need to discover if the agent also shares this view! At Property Matters, we utilize the latest in emerging technologies in the realtor sector to not only improve the efficiency of our agents, but also to create a smoother process by adopting more efficient ways of working. For example, ask your agent if they are able to deliver the following:
- Advanced search tools on their website
- 3D, interactive Floor Plans
- Drone photography
- E-signing capabilities for all documents
- State-of-the-art transaction management system to ensure all deadlines are highlighted and met