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HOW TO SELECT A LISTING AGENT

Stacey Sanders
Broker, Weichert, Realtors® - Porter Properties
President, Alabama Association of Realtors®
January 16, 2019

So you are thinking of selling your house? You’ve seen the strong market activity in our area and are wondering if now is the time to sell. The answer is yes, it is a great time to sell! But selling your house is much more difficult than merely putting a sign in the yard. 

To get the most for your home, you should get a listing agent. A listing agent will put your house on the market in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), thereby exposing it to the maximum audience of potential buyers and creating the best opportunity for a sale. Listing agents’ key roles are knowing the market to accurately price the house, strategically marketing the home, and negotiating to get the most favorable outcome for the seller. 

Not all listing agents provide the same level of service. It is important to note that licensed real estate agents are not the same as Realtors®. Realtors® are a special subset of the industry who abide by the Realtors® Code of Ethics. You will want to interview agents to determine who has the best marketing strategy, resources, and tools and who seems to be the best fit for you. Agents are used to competing for a listing so this is no imposition on them. It is in your best interest to interview at least one Realtor® to make sure you are choosing the right person to get the job done – selling your house for the highest price the market will bear, in the quickest amount of time. 

Here are some topics you may want to consider or discuss when selecting a listing agent.

  • Create a list of two or three candidate agents you want to interview. Ask your friends if they recommend anyone. 
  • Do your research: search online and evaluate their reviews. 
  • In your interview, ask what the agent’s marketing strategy is for your particular home. Beyond installing a sign in the yard and putting the listing in the MLS, what more will they offer?
  • At what price does s/he recommend listing your home? What justifications are made for that price?

Based on your interactions with the agents you have interviewed, ask yourself the following:

  • How responsive was the agent before, during and after the interview?
  • Was the agent listening to and understanding my needs?
  • Who did I feel was most compatible with me?
  • How knowledgeable does the agent seem?
  • Does the agent have the support of an available broker and/or office team?

Your home has been a large financial investment. It is important to get the most return possible on that investment. Make sure you find the right person to make it happen. Best of luck!