Sell Your Home: 6 Signs of a Great Estate Agent!
….. an important 5 minute read..…
Whether you’re selling your home in South Craven or looking to buy, choosing a great estate agent is a hugely important part of the process. Pick the right agent and your transaction is much more likely to go off without a hitch. You’ll be able to find the house of your dreams or get your property off the market much more quickly.
The question is how do you distinguish between a great estate agent and a mediocre one? It can be hard to tell at the initial stage when the agent will be on their best behaviour trying to pitch their services to you. Luckily, there are some signs to look out for. Read on to find out how to spot a great estate agent:
1. They’ll have excellent online reviews
Thanks to Google, it is no longer possible for any service provider to get away with lousy service. Customers and clients can easily leave bad online reviews which will affect their future business. Look online before you decide on an estate agent. Goole reviews and Facebook recommendations are the best places to look.
Search for reputable estate agents that have verified reviews. If they’ve delivered exceptional service in the past, it’s likely, they will again. The same applies to those who have delivered bad service and have poor reviews – avoid them!
2. They’ll often come recommended
One of the best ways to start your hunt for a great local estate agent is to ask around for recommendations. If anyone within your friends and family circle is personally vouching for an estate agent, they’re likely to provide excellent service. It also adds an element of credibility, as the recommendation is coming from someone that you know and trust.
What is also a good way to see who people recommend is to ask on social media. Local Facebook groups are a fantastic place to ask the question “Which estate agent would you recommend?” and watch the comments to come flooding in!
3. They’re members of a governing body
What might surprise you is that estate agents are not regulated. Anyone can open and office, get the right insurance policies in place and say they are estate agents. Find someone that is a member of the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and displays the “propertymark protected” logo. When you see this logo you have the peace of mind that you are being represented by an estate agent that has the experience, is qualified and they will abide by a nationally recognised code of practice.
4. Their average selling time speaks for itself
One of the signs of an effective estate agent is how quickly they can work to move your property off the market. While you want to ensure that they don’t rush the process and achieve a good price for your property, you also don’t want to wait too long when you’re ready to sell your house. A great estate agent will be skilled on how to market your property and will be able to find interested buyers and line up viewings until they get your house sold.
So, how do you find out whether your estate agent will be effective at selling your property? Ask them what their average selling time is. Beware of those with very short selling times, as this could have been done at the expense of price.
5. They offer a fair property valuation
To value a house accurately is a lot more work than you may think. All estate agents know that the property valuation you offer them could lead to you choosing to hire them or not, and they may adjust their valuation accordingly. Some agents may decide to overvalue the property to tempt you into working with them, only to reduce this to a more realistic valuation once you’ve chosen them. Opt for an estate agent that gives you a realistic valuation from the start that is aligned with the market value.
Always ask an agent to explain their valuation regardless of whether it may appear too high, too low or just what you thought. A great estate agent will happily explain their reasoning for their valuation and break down why they’ve given those numbers.
It’s also a very good idea to ask the agent what % of their asking prices they achieve. It’s all well and good if they value your property £20,000 higher than anyone else, but if they are expecting you to negotiate on price by 10% then does it really stack up?
6. They have good communication skills
This is less easy to ‘measure’, but it’s one of the most important things that make up a great estate agent. They should be friendly and communicative so you can be sure that you will be kept informed throughout the process. They should also listen to you. A great agent will understand why you are moving and will tailor the marketing of your property accordingly.
It is also vital that you work with an estate agent that will is excellent at communicating with other agents, mortgage advisors, surveyors and solicitors in order to successfully progress the sale of your property once an offer has been accepted. All too many agents are happy to wash their hands of this responsibility and expect you and your solicitor to get the sale over the line.
Suss out their communication style with a simple phone call or video call, although keep in mind that all agents will be putting their best foot forward at this stage! What I always recommend is to enquire about a property they have on their books as if you were a buyer. That way you’ll know how they would be dealing with a buyer for your property.
Above all you need to remember that you and your agent work as a team. You need to be comfortable with them as people and how they aim to market your property. If it doesn’t feel right then it probably isn’t!
Thanks for reading
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