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How to choose the right real estate agent

February 22nd 2017

WONDERING how to choose the right real estate agent to sell your home? It seems like a simple task, but when it comes to getting the best price for your most valuable asset – finding the right agent is key. Here’s a few tips to get you started.

Fletchers Director, Jeremy Desmier, says research, referrals from friends and your own judgment are key in finding the right agent to sell your property.

 “The best way to find an agent to represent you is research. Look at who is getting consistently good results in your area. Fluking one big sale doesn’t mean an agent can deliver the same result for your property.

“Referrals and recommendations from friends who have recently sold or purchased a property are invaluable”.

Above all, Jeremy recommends property owners use their own judgement.

“If you need to interview more than one agent, appoint the one who you feel will do the best job and market your property to the widest possible audience. This may not be the agent who quotes the highest potential sale price, and is almost never the one who offers the cheapest commission.

“And if you’re in the market to buy, take note of about which agents have been professional, responsive, and displayed integrity in their interactions with you, while still working hard to negotiate the best result for their client – the seller”.

What about agent referral sites?

Agent referral sites aim to connect potential sellers with a number of agents in their local area. The chosen agent then gives a cut of their commission to the referral site. So what’s the catch?

Although the process seems simple enough, Jeremy warns that there are issues with the way these sites work and encourages sellers to conduct their own research before choosing an agent via a referral site.

“Generally, little or no effort is made to accredit or qualify the quality of the agents referred. They don’t mind which agent gets the job, as long it’s an agent that they have a referral arrangement with.

“These sites use clever marketing, claiming to provide valuable comparisons and reputable agents, to gather seller contact information, and then sell the information to numerous local agents as a ‘lead’. The agent is charged a referral fee, usually calculated as 20-30% of the agreed commission.

Jeremy encourages sellers to be particularly wary of referral sites that list agent’s fees as a point of comparison.

“If you’re comparing agents only on their level of fee, they inevitably end up with a low quality agent. If you think about it, you are appointing someone as a professional negotiator to maximise the price of a substantial asset. There is definite irony in appointing a professional negotiator to represent you based on who will offer the cheapest commission rate”.

Happy selling!