If you are selling your home in today’s market, you better be darn sure your real estate agent is doing everything they can to get it sold. Often times, it becomes a listing verses a plan to sell. Your agent needs to be working for you and dedicating their time to getting it sold, not treating it like just another listing for them to hold onto.
Last fall, I was home in Michigan visiting my parents. They had a small cottage in a lakeshore town that they were having a hard time selling and becoming more frustrated daily. They had it listed with my mom’s co-worker’s husband for over one year. When I looked at the MLS listing, I was blown away. The pictures of the home were taken on a rainy day and the lights were not on in the house! In person, this is such a cute and charming home. Online it looked awful – and these pictures had been the main source of marketing this home for over a year! No wonder no one was looking at it!
This is mistake number one. Don’t feel obligated to use a friend, or a friend of a friend, just because they are a Realtor. You are selling an asset (usually your biggest); take it seriously. Get an expert, find someone who specializes in your market, and remember you want your house sold – not just listed by a friendly realtor.
I told my parents that if their real estate agent doesn’t care enough to take pictures when it’s a nice, sunny, bright day, then they probably aren’t going to put in the extra effort that it takes to get a home sold in today’s market. I wrote out a list of questions and started interviewing new agents to list the home. I spent one morning calling 4 agents for my parents and felt them out over the phone. I found one agent who I could tell was a straight shooter; she knew a lot of people in town, did a lot of networking, and sold a lot of homes. My parents decided to go with her to get the job done.
Immediately after securing the listing, she took new light and bright pictures. She started marketing it online (almost 90% of all buyers start their search online now) and holding open houses on the weekends. She had a buyer and the home under contract within a month of listing it for my parents; it closed about thirty days after that.
My parents felt bad about having to get rid of their listing agent who was a friend; this is tough to do sometimes. But they are beyond happy that they’ve sold their house! And that is the goal- get it sold! Find the right agent that focuses on getting the job done. Don’t just put it on the market, get it sold! There is true peace of mind that comes when you no longer have the stress involved as an owner.
Make sure your agent is working for you. Giving your home the little touches that will set it apart in today’s market is a must- not optional! For all you sellers out there having a hard time selling, I hope this paves the way for success!