Questions to Ask a Listing Agent

The right listing agent will make all the difference when it comes to selling your home


Choosing a real estate agent to market and sell your home may seem like a game of chance. But as a smart seller, you will be in capable hands if you do your homework before signing any real estate agent on to represent your interests after listing your property for sale. Look for someone that has the skills, personality, and commitment you need in this partnership. Also ask friends or family for referrals. Take note that a successful real estate company is usually very well known in the communities it serves. Once you have a couple of agent prospects, ask some questions to make certain which is the right agent for you and your priorities.

How long has the agent been in real estate?

New agents are still valuable, but much depends on whether they have access to competent mentors and the level of their training. This means looking at the company they work with. At Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani, new agents receive a tremendous amount of support and training.

When picking an agent consider that new agents tend to have more time to concentrate on you, but those with a track record may get things done with greater ease since they have encountered situations before. The choice between agents is for you to make, but make it an educated choice, and know from the start the experience level being brought to the table.

What is the agent's average list-price-to-sales-price ratio?

This is a ratio that will tell you a lot about the real estate agent's negotiation skills. A competent listing agent should hold a track record for negotiating sales prices that are very close to list prices, so they should have ratios close to 100%.

What is the best marketing plan/strategy to sell my home?

As a seller, you will need to ask how the agent plans to sell your home. Is there a sales campaign that will be planned? Where and how often do they advertise? How do they market homes online?

What are the things that put you above your competition?

Look for things that you value most in this relationship. Most people say they are seeking an agent who is honest, trustworthy, assertive, analytical, and an excellent negotiator. Good communication skills and being available by phone or email also made the list. Finally, you'll want someone who is friendly and able to maintain a good sense of humor when situations get challenging.

Do you have references I can contact?

Everybody has work references, even new agents have some experience in the business unless you are their first client. Look at what kind of business person they have been in the past and what kind of person they will be to work with.

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