Choosing a Realtor to Sell Your Home

Listing Your Home...Seller Beware!

So you’ve decided to sell your home and have an idea of what you think it’s worth. You schedule appointments with three local listing agents who have been referred by a friend or relative, or work in your neighbourhood regularly. Each Realtor recommends a list price and shows you comparative data to back up their opinion.

Two of the Realtors have come up with prices that are lower than you hoped. Although they back up their recommendations with recent sales data of similar homes, you still think your house is worth more.
When you interview the third agent, they tell you a price much more in line with your own anticipated value, or maybe even higher. Suddenly, you are a happy and excited home seller, already counting the money!
If you’re like many people, you pick Realtor number three. You eagerly sign a listing contract with this Realtor because this is an agent who seems willing to listen to your input and work with you. This is an agent that cares about putting the most money in your pocket. This is an agent that is willing to start out at your price and if you need to drop the price later, you can do that easily, right?

The truth is, you may have just met an agent engaging in a questionable sales practice called "buying a listing". By suggesting he might be able to get a higher sales price than the other agents recommended, he raised the odds considerably more in his favour that you'd choose him and essentially "bought" the listing. Most likely, he is quite doubtful that your home will actually sell at that price.

The intention from the beginning was to get that listing and eventually talk you into lowering the price. In the long run, you may sell at a price similar to what was suggested by the other agents, or may even lose money if the property is on the market too long.

Remember that, ultimately, the market place establishes your home’s value. There are many factors that determine the market - regional economics, time of year, and condition of the property, to name a few. Realize that a good agent must consider all of these factors and that marketing plans and negotiation abilities are far more important than just a high market estimate.

Choose your agent based on honesty, ethics, experience, marketing, and how comfortable you feel working with them. After all, you are trusting them to advise and act in your best interest.


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