As is so often the case, "Best" is pretty subjective, however I believe most people agree that biggest is not necessarily the Best. Rather you would want to look for who is recognized for the Superior Knowledge and Customer Service they offer and what kind of meaningful evidence can they provide to back it up? (i.e. - Customer Testimonials, Sold transactions prices, Average sales vs asking price).
For example, Wal Mart is the worlds biggest retailer, but I am sure that most will agree that while they provide good prices, their individual customer service and product knowledge is not the best.
"After all...when selling a house what matters more...How Many homes the Realtor Sells or HOW MUCH the Realtor sells YOUR home for?" â„¢ Â©
I could tell you that my company, Pat Newell & Associates, Inc. - Metro Brokers was VOTED "Best Realty Company in Colorado Springs 2007 - Silver Award" by the readers of the Colorado Springs Independent News, coming in between 2 huge national franchises, or that I was VOTED "Best Realtor in Colorado Springs 2006 - Gold Award" by the readers of the Colorado Springs Independent News, but you would still need to know that, because we are a small independent company, these awards were not voted on by our own associates, but by past clients and friends who know the high level of customer service and knowledge we give.
As you are looking for a company to help you sell your property, it's important to remember in a challenging market such as now, those that work the smartest in marketing your property for you are going to be most successful. Even for Realtors who work with "teams", the individual Realtors education, knowledge and experience is what's most important to a successful transaction.
There are a number of ways to find a competent Realtor, but if you want the best for you and your property...Interview.
When looking for a Realtor Professional you should first look for a Realtor who first and foremost treats their profession as a profession and then interview a some using the following questions to see who you feel most comfortable having represent you.
1. Are they a Full Time, Full Service Realtor? (This eliminates those who see real estate as a "Hobby" or "extra income" and is a wide definition as to what constitutes "Full Service")
2. How long have they been practicing real estate? (Too long and they may be out of touch with current practices and marketing trends. Too little and they may not have the experience to avoid the multitude of transaction pitfalls or negotiation faux pas)
3. Have they continued their real estate education beyond just getting their real estate license and when was their last continuing education class? (for example: the CRS *Certified Residential Specialist* designation is considered the PhD of real estate and is the highest designation recognizing education and performance that a Residential Realtor can receive. While only about 4% of the over 1.3 Million Realtors qualify for the CRS Designation, they do about 25% of all the business in the United States each year.)
4. When were their last 5 listing transactions and what was the result for their seller clients? (Do they have more experience working with buyers or sellers and how much did they get for the seller asking price vs. sold price)
5. Ask about their methodology for doing a CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) to help you price your home correctly for the market. (How do they determine what's a good comparable and can they back it up with market facts specific to your area? Are they giving a price estimate that might be too high just to get your listing only to have to ask you to lower that price several times after wasting your time with your property just sitting stale on the market.)
6. How will they communicate with you about your property? (are they Internet Savvy or e-PRO Technology Certified, do they use tools to keep you up to date on what's going on with your property, how will they provide showing feedback)
7. What tools do they use to market your property? (Do they invest in their business by using tools and technologies to get your property in front of as many potential buyers as possible or do they just rely on the MLS and a few pictures. How do they keep up with the ever changing market. Are they on the cutting edge or still just using newspapers and magazines)
8. Ask if you can call any of their past clients about your service to see what they have to say. If they don't have several to refer you to...that can be an indication of their past service or lack there of.
There are literally thousands of Realtors in the Colorado Springs area who will be happy to take your listing, but you need to carefully examine how they do business and their past success at selling properties as a gauge of how they will market your property.
Fact, we sold more real estate than our closest 2 competitors combined last year.
Fact, we don't even have the highest number of agents, but still out sell our competition.
That being said, it is still important to find an agent that works they way you want. I would be happy to help you find an agent that meets your needs. Call or email and I will match you up with one of the great agents in our company.
I agree completely with Kathy & Susan. A great company is made up of great agents. To detemine which company is best for you, you should start by determining what is most important to you. For example; are you buying or selling, which part of town is your transaction going to take place, are schools important, are HOA's important, do you want an agent with X number of years experience, do you want an individual agent or a team, etc... Once you determine what is important to you, do your research. The internet is a great place to starts, so is the local REALTOR board http://(www.ppar.com) as is the BBB and Chamber. Also, interview in person more then 1 agent so you can compare. By doing a little work up front, you can greatly improve your chances of hiring an agent & company you will be happy with.
The larger chains produce higher statistics but not necessarily have all great agents. Large real estate agencies do not sell your house, their agents do. And, typically the agents are all self employed. Thus, the better question is who is the best Realtor(s)? The answer is there is not just one and depending on your specific criteria there may be an independent agent who specializes in that but doesn't belong to a large agency.
Bottom line, there are good and bad apples in every barrel so interview the agent. Buying and selling a home is typically the biggest transaction a consumer can make thus your relationship with your agent is paramount. Sharing similar values in terms of fiduciary matters will help with trust and achieving the desired outcome.
Outside of myself, I could recommend other good agents in this town that I'd trust and I know work hard for their clients some are with the big guys and some are independent.
I have a client that has just relocated from Colorado Springs to Greensboro, NC. If you like I can ask him what his opinion is? I know he has his home still for sale also.
Coldwell Banker Triad