Not All Agents Are Created Equal – How to Pick the Right Agent for YOU!

Selecting the right agent is important.  Everyone’s needs are different.  This guide will help you find the agent that will best meet your needs, and it may not be what you expect!  Depending on your personality, experience, and expectations, where you fall on the experience vs. availability scale will determine which type of agent may be ideal for you.

Experienced Agents: 

Top producing agents are leaders in the real estate field.  They have more clients, more listings, more sales, and more experience than the majority of their competition.  It has likely taken that top producing agent years of hard work and dedication to get to this point.

These agents are always on the go!  Showings, appointments, research, all of these things take time, therefore top producing agents often employ newer agents or form teams to meet the needs of their customers.  Depending on the skill and devotion of the people working with that agent, clients may receive an excellent level of service from either the top producing agent or one of the members of his or her team that takes over your transaction.

New Agents:

A new agent lacks experience.  They have few, if any listings, clients, and sales.  They have plenty of time to devote to their clients, are up to date on real estate laws, and are eager to prove themselves and get started in this market.  They will likely provide more time and attention than any other agent, but his or her lack of experience may result in hiccups along the way.

Goldilocks Agents:

The goldilocks agent has been in the business long enough to have some experience with listings, clients, sales, attorneys, photographers, inspectors, etc.  They are probably working with a few clients at any given time, but would be able to handle a couple more without a drop in service.  They can often answer your calls or return them within a couple hours, and are usually able to go see a new listing on short notice.

Which is right for you?

Realtors are human.  They still only get 24 hours per day regardless of whether they’re working with one client or 30 clients.

That experienced agent may be phenomenal at his or her job, but at some point, the time devoted to each customer is reduced.

The new agent can call and email you multiple times per day.  They have the time to look at 30 houses and are eager to earn your business and future referral business.

The goldilocks agent is at the equilibrium of experience and attention.  They have some experience and are able to spent more time and attention than an experienced agent.

Questions consumers should ask themselves:

  • Do I expect my agent to be available to talk to all day?

The new agent may be for you.  Top producers may not be ideal for you.

  • Do I expect my agent to be available to go see a new listing with short notice?

The new or goldilocks agent may be for you.  Top producers may not be ideal for you.

  • Do I expect my agent to have the experience of having closed hundreds of transactions?

The top producing, experienced agent may be for you.

  • Do I expect my agent to get in touch with me daily?

If you want to be in touch daily, the new or goldilocks agent will be able to meet this need better than a top producer.

  • Am I going to want to see houses before I really know what I’m looking for?

A newer or goldilocks agent may be ideal as they may be more willing to spend time showing you houses and helping you determine your needs.

  • Do I know exactly what I want and expect that my agent understands my unique needs and will find my new home quickly?

The experienced agent or the goldilocks agent may be ideal for you.  Their knowledge of neighborhoods and current inventory may speed up the process.

Sell Your Home Faster and Higher with These Ten Tips

A home is generally the most expensive purchase one makes.  Conversely, it’s also the most expensive sale one makes.  Use these six tips to sell your home faster and for a higher price.

To do list:

  1. Paint.  Even if you just painted a couple years ago.  Repaint.  It’s an inexpensive way to freshen up the look of a home.  Currently, light to medium greys are all the rage.  Painting every common room the same color helps the space look more open due to the continuity.  Painting bedrooms the same color as the common rooms is an option, or go with other neutral, tranquil colors.
  2. Declutter.  Your collection of teaspoons and teacups is darling, but any time a potential buyer spends looking at your collection is time that they are not picturing themselves living in the home.  A home packed with stuff appears to lack storage space.  If you need to rent a storage room, do it!
  3. Depersonalize.  While your home is on the market, it is a commodity.  People will be coming into your home and determining whether they can see themselves living there.  Family photos, masterpieces by your children, hunting trophies, and any other highly personal decor makes it hard for potential buyers to picture their furniture, decor, and family in the space.  These items should be put in storage then cherished again in your new home.
  4. Stage.  Staging is decorating your home to best showcase it’s features and appealing to the most buyers.  Consider buying inexpensive quilts/comforters in neutral or trendy patterns that complement your freshly painted walls.  Covering family photos in geometric fabric, patterned wrapping paper, or printed images is an inexpensive way to both depersonalize and stage.
  5. Landscape.  The first impression a buyer has is when they pull up to your home.  Make it count!  Plant some new flowers, put down fresh mulch, and keep your yard well manicured.  It may be worth hiring a lawn service temporarily.  If you have a front porch, a potted plant or flowers are always a nice touch.
  6. Clean.  Keep your home clean.  The perfect buyer may call at any moment to see your home and you want them to see that you maintain the home.  Before you leave for work in the morning, close toilet lids, put dishes in the dishwasher, pile dirty clothes in a basket and put in the back of the closet, empty trash cans, fold and display decorative towels in bathrooms and kitchen, make all beds, wipe down the countertops, tables, and anywhere dust accumulates (if you declutter, this is much easier), get down cobwebs (check corners, lamps, chandeliers, and windows), and open blinds to allow sunlight to fill each room.
  7. Be available.  Yes, showings may be very inconvenient.  If you cancel showings, those buyers may not reschedule or may go fall in love with another home before they are able to see yours.  Never decline a showing unless you absolutely must.
  8. Price appropriately.  Discuss your priorities with your Realtor.  Is getting top dollar even if it takes a year more important, or is selling within the next 30 days more important?  This discussion along with both the comparable sales in the neighborhood and the properties currently listed for sale will help determine your list price.
  9. Hire a Realtor.  Statistics show that in 2014, 88% of prospective buyers were working with a Realtor.  That 88% will likely not be looking at FSBO listings.  The average For Sale By Owner (FSBO) is on the market for 88 days, while the average home listed with a Realtor is on the market for 69 days.  Realtors will handle negotiations, paperwork, meeting inspectors, and organizing all people who will participate in the closing.
  10. Pre-inspect.  Consider having a pre-inspection, fixing any issues that arise, and providing both the inspection and the receipts from repairs to prospective buyers.  This helps buyers feel confident making an offer on your home and minimizes the opportunity for repair negotiations in the future.