Home Selling in 12020>Question Details

Hope-floats, Home Seller in Saratoga Springs, NY

How to find the right agent?

Asked by Hope-floats, Saratoga Springs, NY Wed Jul 27, 2011

I am the one who listed the question about my house not being shown. I am firing my agent and looking for a new one. My previous agent, brought me no comps, showed me no activity reports. Gave me no details of where my house was listed. Everything was quite unprofessional. My house is now dropped in price by 20,000. I have it listed for 229.999. It needs some minor TLC which we are working on. My son had leukemia and a transplant and quite frankly I have run out of funds. It's 4 bdrms, 2 baths, executive ranch on almost 2 acres, with a large 40x60 pole barn and large pond. It also has a large in law apartment. I am also surrounded by state owned land and it will always be country living close to everything. I'm told it's also one of the most desirable school districts. It's also easy access to the highway 2.5 miles and close to all amenities. My agent had to pay her own advertising and she is pretty broke. How do I go about comparing agents.

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I would ask around to your friends/family if they know of a good agent in town. We recently had someone post the same question on facebook and got a lot of responses from fiends. Our name came up more frequently than any other agent and that's why she called us. I would ask how long they have been in selling, how many homes they sell a year and what their marketing program is. Get multiple agents to give you a free market analysis and choose one after meeting with them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 7, 2013
I agree with the answer below that you need to make a good team and hire an agent with experience and full time. I think we as agents and people need to communicate better. I think technology has taken away the personal side of the businesss
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 7, 2013
All this time later, Hope Floats, I hope you were able to actually find an agent who worked for your listing.

If you are ever looking again, I hope that you think about that first interview-

How quickly did the agent respond to you? Did she establish expectations- both on her side and on yours?
If you want a fast sale, the answer is to aggressively establish a fair price, to stage your home as attractively as possible within the parameters of what you are willing to put forth, both in money and in sweat equity terms, and to realize that if you don't have showings and offers in the first three weeks you need to aggressively re-price: there is nothing worse than trailing a market down, leaving your home stale to prospective buyers. And the price should be agreed to by you- with your agent giving you all the information you need to be an educated participant in knowing what your market is.

If you want daily reports, set that expectation up front. Whether by phone or e-mail or text. If you would rather have reports weekly, or based on activity, your agent should be there for you.
Your agent should be aggressive and you shouldn't be worrying about her marketing costs: it's her job to present her marketing plan to you and to be effective in using all the tools realtors now have, both old-style and cutting edge.

Make it a great day!

Gail Weiss
NYS Licensed Real Estate Salesperson
Keller Williams Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 10, 2013
A major factor in choosing an agent is with the amount of education an agent has obtained. Are they a "sales agent" or have they went further and obtained their brokers license? I am a sales agent who has wanted to learn more about the laws and procedures in my profession and went back to get additional education... It has given me an edge and a whole new look at the industry.... So, as I become an associate broker , I feel a greater confidence in my abilities and can help others at a new level.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
After checking to make sure your prospective agent is licensed, educated, and professional, I believe the most important next step is determining if together, both of you, make a good team.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Agent who will provide you data required.

I never go on listing call till I phone interview the seller , comp property , provide data

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Interview in person a few agents, or as many as needed, from different realty companies, then choose the one you like best and who has the most to offer; ask what marketing strategies will be implemented; what plans will be put in place to coordinate meetings with buyers; what feedback/communication can you expect and with what frequency; will data be supplied to help establish a fair and marketable asking price; will buyers be pre-screened and required to have mortgage pre-approvals when submitting offers; what other services does the agency offer, if any, etc. Choose your agent with care.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
I would look for agents already working in your area possible from for sale signs. Interview the agents, check out their websites, ask for referrals and make sure they give you all the information you need to be well educated on the local market.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
What you are looking for is an agent that understands your local market and can give you honest advise on where your home should be priced to bring in offers. Why worry about reports, comps etc if you are not getting showings or offers. This means your home is not priced right for your local market. Don't wait to price your home lower to bring in offers. Have your agent price your home based on recent sold properties only. Active listings represent only what the seller may want for a home not what a buyer would pay. This is what sold listings do for you. So you need to decide if you want your home as an active listing or sold listing. Get an agent who will price your home to sell and position your home better than your competition. Then you will accomplish your home and your home will sell while most others will remain on the market and chase it by making price reductions after price reductions. Get ahead of the competition if you can. .....

All the best,

Gary Geer

0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
You need to find an agent you feel comfortable with, this is a relationship with a lot of contact, you want to be sure it is not someone that irks you!
Have interviews and take your time, review at least three agents but five is better!
Contact these agents and have them come to you at different times.
1) Ask for a CMA of the home you wish to sell! compare, drop agents that are not in the common zone!
2) Ask the agents to show you their plan on marketing your property!
3) Ask for references,
4) Ask for performance over the past year! Again look at Quality not Quantity
5) Make no judgement for at least a week, Call each agent at least three times and not in the 9-5 zone, call once on any day a 8pm, another call should be on a Friday after 5pm and then call on Saturday at 12 -2 pm zone, Record how long it takes for each to call you back, the one that calls the quickest and most often is a good Realtor and will be there for you!
6) Ask how they back themselves up, you know they are not always going to be available, but what do they do to keep me covered 24/7
7) Watch their dress and listen to their communication, this is important in getting buyers!
8) A good agent will always listen to you, and will not interrupt while you are giving them information or explaining something. They will never embellish on you desires or requirements. The can and will repeat what you have said back to you word for word, because your requirements have been noted and they will as long as ethics allows carry out your wishes!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Hi Hope-floats,

You mentioned a lot of valid reasons for firing you current agent.
Just curious, why did you list your home with he/her to begin with?

Since you are already on Trulia, why not take a look at the professionals under "Find a Pro"
Interview a few, and get to know how he/she would handle business for you.

- Pricing/Strategy
- Marketing (plus how do they track the marketing results, and analyze that info.... personally, I like to see the pictures they have taken of other properties, as well)
- Communication (biggest complaint most buyers/sellers have with their agent)

Let them know your questions/concerns, and note how each responds accordingly.
I'm sure you have some really great agents in your area, don't let this bad experience get you down.

If you need some help finding a great Realtor in your area, feel free to drop me a line.

Hope this helps,

Randy P.
Web Reference: http://www.trust2move.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Hello Hope Floats
I would ask friends and family for agent referrals. Ask if they worked with an agent that they think would do a good job for you and meet your expectations. If you dont find an agent to meet you expectations through a family member or friend you could interview. I would maybe pick 3-4 agents from different offices and interview them. Listen to what they say they will do to market your home and share your expectations. It is unfortunate that you had a bad experience but their are great agents out there! Do some research on your end for agents in your area! You will find somebody. If in fact your in a desirable area for schools the sooner you get your house on the market the better. Many like to move before the school year begins. I wish you the best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Hi Hope,
It is unfortunate you had this experience and are in such a difficult situation. First of all, your agent should be a Realtor. This is a person who is a member of the state and National Realtor Associations. I personally would work witha Nationally known brokerage. Speak to the broker in the office and ask for a Realtor who has experience and who works in your area. Then interview them, and pick one that will meet your needs and criteria.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
I do not belive that there is ONE TRUE AGENT out there for you:
There are a lot of good agents in every area. Good people! Hard working people!

They say that there are good ones, and bad ones in every group: I've found that the process we have to go through, just to become a Realtor is mind-blowing. It takes a lot of time and hard work, and that isn't even accounting for the first five years.

I am so proud to be a Realtor; and when we have a meeting or conference, I really enjoy meeting my compatriots. They are intelligent, compasionite and enjoyable to be around.

Just call three Agents out of the blue, tell them you are considering LISTING, and see what they bring to the table. I'll bet all three are prepared.

Good luck and may God bless
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Best thing to do is, research, research, research! Look in your local print advertisements (newspapers, real estate publications) & online websites (trulia.com, realtor.com, zillow.com). Active Agents will have quite a few listings, check out how their listings are portrayed (#of photos, description, tours etc). This is the best way to narrow it down. Once you get it down to 3 of the "best" agents, call them & conduct a phone interview. Ask how many active listings they have in your area, how many have they sold in your area this year, what they will do for advertising beyond what you had last time, etc.
Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
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