Ok, so you are looking to sell your house. You might want to ask a few agents in to discuss their individual approaches to getting the job done in the time frame that works best for you. There will be an exchange of ideas between you and each of the competing agents. Obviously you will have questions to ask them and unless the agent is dead from the neck up, they will have some questions for you. So quite unlike in the Wizard of Oz, I am going to let you look behind the curtain, so you know what are the 3 most important questions you can, and should ask your agent.
Before I tell you what they are, let me ask you, do you think numbers are important in Real Estate? The answer to this is a simple “HELL YES!” The entire business is predicated on a complex series of numbers and how they are gathered. A good agent knows their numbers, and based on this, if you start asking about them, if they are not sure of their own numbers, or if they tell you, “it’s around,” or worse still “let me get back to you,” This is a good reason to move on to the next agent. Think of them as your doctor. If you needed serious surgery, wouldn’t you want to know how successful the doctor was at performing this particular kind of surgery? How many patients didn’t survive the surgery? What in fact was the doctor’s “mortality rate?” I can’t imagine you NOT asking about this. How would you feel, if the doctor said, “well, I am not sure” or let me get back to you on that? I don’t know about you, but if the doctor lost anyone on the table, they should remember that (and who) and if it happened multiple times, I would hope to God they would remember each and every one of his/her patients.
So let’s get back to Real Estate and the 3 questions your agent should know the answers to off the top of their heads.
- Of the listing you have taken, how many actually sold? (Sometimes agents call this their kill ratio.)
- What is your list price to sale price ratio? Is it 92.3%, 96.8%, 123%?
- What are your average days on the Market?
Having said this, the agent should be able to discuss their numbers as they are compared to the overall market. Again, if they appear to be thinking about them or if they don’t know or if they struggle, you really should ask yourself why are you bothering to talk to them. Go back to the doctor, and describe your reaction when you ask them about their mortality rate, and you watch them stroking their beard and murmur something like “well it was a very low number, maybe 2 or 3?” Wait, you’re not sure? 2 or 3? Oh, well, what’s the big deal? We are only talking about ONE life, right? Pretty scary isn’t it?
So as much as you might want to talk about who they know, and what kind of car they are driving, or what country club they belong to, go for the gusto and get to the important stuff. Get the agent to discuss their numbers. Watch them struggle or watch them knock you over with a feather. It’s the best way to make the optimum choice.
“Hey, I wrote the book on Real Estate, literally.”
Author Brendan J. Cunningham is a New York Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker, lead of the Platinum Team at HusVar Real Estate, as well as an accomplished writer, Shakespearean trained professional actor, and podcaster.
Start your home search now at www.husvarre.com