The real estate market has been steadily recovering since the crash of 2008, and even with the pandemic arriving in 2020, sales still rose. Last year saw over 5.6 million existing houses sold, and 2021 is predicted to beat this number by almost a million more.
If you are thinking of selling your home soon, you may have already started to look at the different selling methods available. Maybe you have already decided that the traditional route of using a real estate agent is the best option.
However, when you appoint a realtor you are entering into a contract, so, it makes sense to have some questions ready to ask them. Not only will this bring you peace of mind that you have chosen the right agent, but they can also give you advice on how to present the house and speed up the sale.
Is using a real estate agent the right choice?
If you are planning on marketing your home soon then you will surely be investigating the various ways to go about this. These days, not everyone uses a realtor.
Auctions can be a fast way to offload an unwanted property, and the internet has made it possible to sell a house all by yourself. Some say a house buying company is the best bet to sell a home fast and save money, but realtors offer something these methods cannot.
A professional realtor will try to get you the best price that is possible. In fact, it is in their interest to do so. Quick house sales and happy clients mean the reputation of the business grows. Word of mouth is very important to realtors, and happy sellers are likely to recommend them to other people.
What questions should you ask real estate agents?
Once you have shortlisted your choice of agents, you should consider what to ask them before deciding on the best option. This is your chance to gain useful information and build trust on both sides. If a realtor knows you are a committed seller, they will try harder to move your property along quickly.
Here are some questions you should ask when visiting a real estate agent:
1. How long have you been operating in the area and how well do you know it?
Local area knowledge is invaluable when selling a home. An established agent will know the local market and understand what sells well. For instance, Poway Real Estate can advise on their particular location, just as a New York agent should be able to help with their borough.
2. How long on average have the listed properties been on the market?
Find out how quickly properties are selling from the agent compared to others you are looking at.
3. How do you use the internet and media to market homes?
Are they stuck in the dark ages or are they fully utilizing modern technology to help sell houses fast?
4. How should I present my home?
This is a chance to find out how you should present your home to viewers. A good realtor can advise on what you should remove into storage to help declutter.
5. How much commission do you take?
Don’t forget to ask this as the fee could differ between agents. Traditionally the commission for a house sale could be 6% of the total sale price, but this has changed in some places. According to Investopedia, the commission could be as low as 4% with some agents. Plus, this fee could be split between buyer and seller.
6. What is curb appeal?
You may have heard of this term before, but a realtor can explain it properly to you and help to point out how you can improve yours. Basically, curb appeal is how attractive your home appears to a potential buyer as they pull up to the sidewalk.
7. Should I carry out any renovations or repairs?
Mention any areas that you know need attention to find out if the realtor believes they will impede the sale.
8. Should I pay for my own house inspections?
Ask your realtor’s advice, but you may want to go ahead with this anyway as it will show up any problems before a buyer gets a chance to find them.
You may have more questions of your own, and a good real estate agent will be happy to answer all of them. If you find an uninterested agent, take your property elsewhere.
Understanding what you should do to help yourself can make the house sale less stressful. When looking at how you can speed up the sale of your home without dropping the price, fixing small problems may be a good option. Your real estate agent can help you to make some decisions here.
They should also be happy to answer any questions about their experience, and their selling methods. Once you have your questions answered, you can be happy knowing you have picked the right realtor.