or a Realtor that you "know" (not one of us typing-icons online that you do NOT know) giving you a referral to an agent in your area who will then sent a portion of their commission back to us as a finder's fee.
Once you've got that referral.. that does not negate the need to ask those important questions (as Rockin' outlined below from that incredibly talented Elv!s guy that he's quoting. :-)
The answer here depends on what you are looking for. There are discount brokerages and then there are full service brokerages. No commission is every written in stone. Each one is negotiable, just a word to the wise, as with anything, you get what you pay for. If you want above average service and professionalism, it won't happen with an agency that just puts the listing on the MLS and then does nothng else. Talk to people you know who have recently sold to see how they made out and with whom. Interview at least 3 agents from 3 different agencies. Have questions written out and ask each agent the same questions. Then later you can evaluate each one. Listen to each agent for what he/she has to offer. Experience and success are two characteristics you want to pay particular attention to Good luck and if there is anything I can do for you, please don't hesitate to contact me. One further thought, once you put your home on the market, make sure the tenants are aware and agreeable. Sometimes tenants make it impossible to show their homes.
Worry less about the commission and more about the bottom line. I suggest interviewing three REaltors and comparing their proposals.
If you look at the link below you can see that you are in a declining market, so you need an expert who can expose the best value of your homes so the buyers will have to see it for themselves. If you would like a referral to a Realtor that is in the top ten percent of your area, please contact me and I will arrange it.
I'll give you a hint on the referral thing. If the agent that is referred to you has had positive results with friends or relatives in this market, they certainly should be considered at a high level. If, on the other hand, the only experience your friends or relatives had with the referred agent was during the bubble, be much more skeptical. Been there. Done that.
(1) expertise and track record in local market, years in the business,
(2) membership in National Association of Realtors a must (only NAR members are REALTORS),
(3) customized marketing plan for your property, including most important Internet presence (multiple photos, virtual tours), color property brochures, weekend and twilight open houses, etc.,
(4) realistic reccomended range of value, as validated by an accurate market analysis,
(5) if referred by a trusted source that has had a positive experience with that agent,
(6) agent's and broker/franchise national and global networking resources,
(7) availability of agent, method of communication and regular reporting, reliance on assistants and/or backup while absent on vacation or conventions, and
(8) whether during the interview process you feel a certain chemistry with that agent as you will be interacting with him/her frequently.
Commissions are negotiable; however, I feel that in today's challenging market you should expect to pay at least a 6% brokerage fee and to list the property for a realistic period of time (depending on turn-around time in your market). High inventory levels affect the days on market and therefore the agent's marketing costs. We Realtors are Independent Contractors working strictly on commission, without benefits. Marketing dollars come out of our pockets, and advertising is expensive. Commissions are shared with the selling agent, the broker, and additional fees to the Franchise (if there's one) must be paid. You will find some agents that will provide "a-la-carte" services for a lower fee, but your exposure will be lessened and your goal is to sell the property quickly and for the highest bottom line to you - and your net has more to do with accurate, realistic pricing and agressive marketing than commissions.
Hope this helps, Lisa ... good luck in your selection! Do let me know if you need a top-not Century 21 agent in your area, and I'll be more than happy to recommend a colleague. We have over 8,000 offices worldwide, in 58 countries and territories. Terri
Terri Dominguez, REALTORÂ®
ABR, AHWD, ALHS, BBA, CIPS, CRS, ePRO, GRI, TRC
Senior Broker Associate, Master Brokers Forum Member
Century 21 Premier Elite Realty
305-898-7028, direct line
Your REALTORÂ® - Global Resources, Local Expertise.
" I would be happy to recommend someone in Rhinebeck if want assistance." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
If the referral is the best, why not use that agent? Below is from my post. Are you just disagreeing because I'm not an agent? It seems to me you are doing little more than paraphrasing parts of my post, and looking for a referral fee with the rest
"Certainly having a referral to him or her is a plus, but is certainly not a sure thing. The agent that was referred to me by three friends was an absolute disaster."
I am a Top Producing agent located just down the road from you in the Town of Poughkeepsie. I sell many homes each year, both Single Family and Multi Family. I will gladly answer any questions you have about my performance history or my company. I would love to have the opportunity to be interviewed and show you what my marketing program can do for you. Visit my website below and see my current listings and my long list of sold homes. I have increased my volume of sales each year I have been in business. I have sold more homes this year, in this market than ever before. Call me direct at 845-591-5274 if I can be of help to you.
I disagree with Rockinblu...a referral is best; however, it does not mean you should hire the referral...it means the referral should be one of the Realtors chosen to be interviewed for the job.
I would be happy to recommend someone in Rhinebeck if want assistance. I can be reached off line at Gail@GailGladstone.com. By the way, my designations are CIPS, TRC, RECS, SRES and CIC.
In choosing a Realtor possibly the first thing I would look for is some letters behind the name. These do lend some sort of creditability. Certainly having a referral to him or her is a plus, but is certainly not a sure thing. The agent that was referred to me by three friends was an absolute disaster. As far as choosing one on your own, drive around the neighborhood and look at signs to find out what brokerages are represented and look their site up on the web. Go to the agents roster and select a few. I would try to find the Realtor's listings on Realtor.com and see whose listings are the best described with and are featured listings with multiple photos and a virtual tour. From those use the criteria below. Some of the criteria are obvious, and couple not so much so.
1. Your call to the agent was answered, or returned in a prompt manner.
2. The agent showed up on time for the appointment, and was neat and professional in appearance.
3. Be sure to mention the names of other agents you have talked with, or will be interviewing. If the agent you are interviewing gives any indication that could be interpreted as a knock against the competition, he or she has failed on an important criterion. If, on the other hand, the agent is complimentary about his or her colleagues, that is a plus.
4. The agent should be prepared with facts and figures, marketing plan, and offer suggestions. When an agent says "This property is perfect. You don't need to do a thing to it," it could very well be a big red flag.
After finally finding four that have met all of the above criteria, of the four suggested listing price ranges choose between the agents that have the two in the middle. Of those two, choose the agent you felt the most comfortable with. There is a lot to be said about trusting your "gut." The reason I disqualified the one with the high suggested price is that it could be a good chance the agent is just giving the info that you want to hear to get your listing. Not a very honest practice. I threw out the low, based on the possibility that this agent is just looking for a easy and quick sale at your expense. However, easy and quick are not adjectives normally found used in this market. If all four or even three suggested prices would come in extremely close, just go with the Realtor that you have the best feeling about of the group.
ELV!S posted these great interview questions below on another thread. They should be of some help as well.
â€¢ How many homes, of my type, have you sold? (recently, 6 mos, 1 year, 5 years)
â€¢ What is your list / sale ratio?
â€¢ What is your average "days on market"
â€¢ What is your marketing plan for my home?
does it include internet (where?), do you offer multiple photos, virtual tours, color brochures
â€¢ Do you do open houses (why / why not / how often?)
â€¢ What is your price recommendation (why / how did you arrive at that / do you have comps to back that up?... do you have a "quick sale" price, and a normal sale price")
â€¢ What is your plan if I'm not under contract in 30 days / 60 days / 90 days ...etc....
â€¢ Why should I hire you? What do you bring to the table that's different than the myriad of other agents out there who want my listing.
â€¢ Will you offer a reduced commission (why / why not?)
â€¢ Are you a full-time agent?
â€¢ Do you practice dual-agency? (why / why not?)
â€¢ What do you think of Agent A and Agent B (the two other agents you're interviewing)
â€¢ Are you planning any upcoming vacations or are you going to be unavailable, and who is your back-up when you're gone?
â€¢ What weekly communication can I expect from you?
â€¢ Is there anything I haven't asked you, that you think I should have?
A great post from a TruliaVoices Member named Alan in New Jersey brought this question to mind:
Will buyers have to sign in to view my property on your site?
The preferred answer is obviously â€œno.â€
If there is even a remote chance of you eventually going FSBO, try to make sure that in the listing agreement that the Realtor protection period is short as possible. Try for 30 days, and that a protected list of buyers is given to you within a 3 business day period after the expiration of the listing. This should be written in the agreement. Finally, remember commissions are negotiable. Good luck.