Top 4 Reasons NOT to Hire a Real Estate Agent
Do not hire someone you have a social relationship with when selling
Do not hire a real estate agent because you agreed to list with them as a courtesy, such as a relative, friend or neighbour in the business. This can be a huge mistake and unfortunately, it happens often. Sellers can feel pressured because there is a relationship which has been developed. If your friend, relative or neighbour is not a full-time, selling agent and on top of their game, selling your home may not be a priority. If you choose to hire someone you already have a relationship with, make sure they are a real estate professional and during the listing appointment, they treat it as a business interview and not social coffee time.
Do not hire a real estate agent who cannot answer simple real estate questions
This is one of the easiest tests that you can utilize when first meeting a real estate agent. Ask the prospective Realtor the following questions:
- What is the absorption rate (months of inventory) in our community?
- How many days is it taking to sell a home in the Edmonton market?
- Do you use social media and syndication websites?
- What do you normally do every day?
- How often will you be in touch with me?
- Would you be willing to do open houses?
These may seem like a basic question but there are many real estate agents in Edmonton who do not do open houses, have websites, social media or stay in touch with home sellers on a regular basis. Whether the answer is yes or no, listen carefully to the agent's response and it will give you an indication of how much effort will be going into actively selling your home.
The agent’s valuation of your home seems off
This is a biggie. If any real estate agent throws out a number that sounds too good to be true, it likely is - expect several price reductions as soon as you sign the listing agreement (This is called "buying the listing"). On the other end of the spectrum, if the valuation is way less than what you expected, the agent may just want a quick sale and may not be working in your best interest. An experienced agent will take the time to show you all of the market data for you, as a homeowner, to make an informed decision on pricing your own home.
The real estate agent lowers their commission when asked
It requires time and costs money to properly market a property. Your Realtor will be splitting this commission with the agent that brings the buyer and has other costs to pay out prior to receiving offers. A good agent will tell you what they charge and will not budge. Remember, you are hiring a professional negotiator to represent you in the sale of an extremely valuable asset. If you choose to go with a commission discount company, remember, you will receive what you pay for. Would you rather save the most on your commission, or net the most money after the sale? If you want to maximize your profit, saving on the commission is the wrong way to get there!
The agent does not place a high priority on professional photos, and marketing.
This may be the easiest way to weed out a bad real estate agent. If an agent is not willing to hire a professional photographer to photograph one of the most important assets of your life - Choose a different real estate agent. Almost every person in the world who is looking for a home is online. If your property photos look dark, poorly positioned, and were obviously taken on an iPhone, you are at a massive disadvantage and will result in fewer showings which means fewer buyers looking at your home. There is simply no excuse for this!