We own a home in another state that we are going to sell. I had the fun of being in the clients’ shoes and choosing a real estate agent in another town. In this particular town, my network of worldwide luxury agents was not applicable.
So, below are the steps I took to find and hire an agent. As the story unfolds, you will see that the decision was not easy. I’m asking for your help. So please read to the end and weigh in with your opinion……….
- I asked my relatives who live in the town where the home is located for the names of agents they recommended. I received one name this way. Studies show that word of mouth is one of the most common ways that people find real estate agents.
- I looked on Zillow, but I didn’t use Zillow to choose an agent. Why? Because agents who don’t live or work in the area pay to be on Zillow. I did use Zillow to get an idea of the inventory and the Z-estimate. By the way, after speaking with the two agents, I learned the Z-estimate was way off, just like it is in Park City. A computer is no substitute for local knowledge!
- I looked on realtor.com to see if there was an agent who had another listing nearby. I found one who did.
- I called both agents. Neither answered. I left a voice mail for each of them. The realtor.com agent called me back immediately. The other called me back several hours later. The one who called me back immediately was at a conference. I was impressed she was furthering her professionalism by attending a conference and that she took the time to return the call right away.
As a side note, when you are a REALTOR, about the best call you can get is a person calling you to tell you they have a house to sell. Just sayin’.
- I made arrangements for each agent to see the house. Again, the first agent, who was referred by a relative, did not talk to me on the phone. She just texted and emailed. I found it very alarming that this agent would not give me the courtesy of a phone call while she had the possibility of earning my business. I was concerned that if I hired her to list the home, the communication would be worse, not better. The other agent, who I found on realtor.com, told me she was busy showing property. We set up a time for her to call me. Then, she did not call at the appointed time. When I texted her ten minutes later, she said she had met with her clients earlier than expected and we set up another time to talk later in the day.
- The agent who never called me put together an excellent CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) and emailed it to me. She clearly spent a lot of time on it. Her cover letter had no explanation, just the CMA attachment.
When I finally talked with the second agent, she verbally gave me a few comparable sales and gave me a suggested list price that was almost 10% more than the first agent’s list price.
Which of these two agents would you hire and why?