One of the most daunting tasks when you are thinking about selling your house is finding the right real estate agent. Although most agents are ethical and wish to establish a trusting relationship with their clients, there are a few who simply wish to gain your business regardless of whether or not they will truly be able to meet your needs. The last thing anyone wants is to have to deal with a dodgy real estate agent that is just trying to take advantage of you. While there is often no way of knowing for sure if an agent is dodgy, we have included a list of signs that, should make you a little wary.
Agents who Offer you an Immediate High Price for your Property
If an agent asks you what you think your property is worth and then agrees with you without conducting any market analysis, you should be suspicious. Naturally, asking for your opinion on the value of your home is not a bad thing. Good agents want to know what your expectations are like so that they can manage these and work with you towards achieving a realistic yet satisfactory goal. However, you want to be sure that this price is substantiated with hard facts and data obtained in a Comparative Market Analysis. If an agent simply agrees to list your home for the first price you have listed without any analysis to back this up, chances are that they are just trying to win you as a customer any way they can. Once you are locked into a contract and find yourself without a sale; they can blame it on the market or tell you that you have unrealistic expectations. It’s the real estate agent’s job to manage expectations and show you the data that will help you come to a realistic value on your property. After all, they are professionals and should have a much better idea of what your house is worth than you do.
Agents Who Have a Buyer for the Home before You Have Signed a Contract
Another tactic that agents might use to get your business is to say that they already have a potential buyer for your home. You should ask to speak to this buyer before you sign any contract, lest you get fooled into signing an agreement only to find out that the buyer has decided to purchase another property. This tactic is sometimes used by unethical real estate agents if a contract is about to expire. In order to entice you to renew the contract with them, they’ll fabricate a perfect buyer. This perfect buyer will need time to arrange inspections and financing, so you renew your contract with the agent, but then you’ll hear the buyer has pulled out, so you’re stuck with another 90 day contract with this same agent. This could leave your property open to further price reductions, but leaves the agent with the ability to still earn their commission.
Real Estate Agents Who are all Dazzle
We’ve all come across salespeople who are able to say the right things and make the right promises, and many good real estate agents are excellent salespeople. But, beware of a charming agent who has little else to offer besides their charisma. There’s more to real estate than having the ability to forge an initial connection or woo a potential buyer. You’ll also want to look at the agent’s other qualifications to make the right decision. Look for the following factors:
- Whether or not the agent is a licensed member of the Real Estate Institute of Australia and if they are in good standing
- Does the agent pay attention to detail? Will they consistently follow through with potential sales leads and relay information back to you?
- Will the agent be available for open houses and buyer enquiries?
- How many sales has the agent managed to complete in the past few months? Compare this number to the amount of listings they have held, and whether or not these listings were in your area.
- How long were the average listings, and how close in price were the list prices to the final sales prices?
Agents who Avoid Feedback
Although you may think you have a great property to offer, in reality no one has a perfect home. If you want to receive the best possible price for your house, you need to be open to suggestions and feedback from your agent. If the agent doesn’t provide you with any suggestions for improvement, this could mean that they will be willing to sell your home at a lower price in an ‘as is’ condition. They may also just prefer not to share bad news. Although selling your home at a lower price may be acceptable, an agent should tell you that if you replace your carpeting and give your home a fresh coat of paint you could see a 3% higher rate of return on your sale. With a reputable estate agent, you should expect quality feedback about your property.
Agents who don’t Communicate
Choosing the right real estate agent involves taking factors like communication, experience, and ethics into account. You want to find a good, honest communication who will look out for your best interests and try to present you with both the pros and cons of your options, rather than someone who will simply try to tell you what you want to hear.
If you keep these points in mind, you should be able to avoid dodgy agents and find an agent that helps you sell your property with confidence. You can compare real estate agents and find the one that best suits you on LocalAgentFinder. It’s a free, no-obligation service that is quick and easy to use, simply register your property details to start your search for the right agent for your property.