Looking for a new home, or selling your current home can feel like a daunting task. Finding an estate agent to help you through the process can help the process to go much smoother. But finding the right agent can also feel like a difficult task. There are a number of things you can do to make the process of choosing an estate agent easier.
Start with Recommendations
Start by asking around for recommendations. Ask friends and family members who have recently sold or purchased their homes. Or ask your neighbors and coworkers who they have used in the past. Ask them what they thought of them, and if they were happy with them. If so that is a good place to start, and if they were not happy then you know which agents to avoid working with. Another idea is to look around your area and see which agents have experience working in your area. Those who have multiple listings in the area will known the community and what the best approach is for selling and purchasing homes in the area.
Check Their Credentials
Once you have made a list of agents to consider, look at the professional credentials for the estate agents. You can usually find out from the estate’s website or from the professional organization if they are members or not. Those agents who are members of professional organizations also adhere to the code of conduct of those organizations. Some of these organizations include:
- National Association of Estate Agents,
- Guild of Professional Estate Agents, and
- Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
Ask Agents to Value Your Property
After you have made a short list of those agents that peek your interest, ask them to value your property. Ask at least three or four agents to value the property, and compare the information they provide you with before making your decision. Although it may be tempting, do not make a decision solely on the highest value you get from the agents. Instead look over the information for the one that is most accurate and fair in their value of your property. This will help to ensure they are going to be able to deliver on what they promise.
Ask Important Questions
When agents come to value your property make sure to ask them some key questions to help you make your decision. Some of these questions include:
- Sole agency costs and time – This allows a single agent to sell your property over a specific period of time. The fees for this vary and are usually a percentage of the sale price for the home.
- Multiple agency costs – This allows multiple agents to sell your property, and the agent who sells the home is paid the fee. This fee is often a higher percentage of the sale price of the home, but usually also give greater exposure of potential buyers to your home.
- Agent’s experience – This tells you how long the agent has been in the business, and how successful they have been in selling property. As part of their experience also ask about their experience in selling homes in your community.
- Who is responsible for viewings – This will let you know if your agent will be present at viewings or if another agent will be present. Also find out what items they will be available for viewings.
After you have all of this information, you can make an educated decision about which agent best meets your needs.