I strongly recommend blind references when interviewing agents. These are references where people will write directly to you. This is much more effective than getting a set of pre-written letters. Anyone -- and I mean anyone -- who has been in the business for two or three years can find two or three people who will say they were a great agent.
When you get to the blind reference, these are the questions I think you should ask.
1. Did the agent know about the town, the area, the market?
2. Do you believe that the agent was working in your interests and not being influenced by other agents?
4. Do you believe that the agent helped you develop a plan and stick to it?
5. Did the agent provide an attractive marketing presentation of the house? Did you like the look of your listing sheet and materials?
6. Did your agent show respect for your time and your property? Was anything stolen or damaged during the showing process?
7. Did the agent provide useful information during the Offer process? Did you get market data to inform your decisions? Did you feel well informed during negotiation?
8. Did you feel pushed into selling something too quickly? Did you think that the agent failed to work for your best deal in order to get the deal done?
9. What adjective would you use to describe this agent when house hunting? When negotiating?
For interviewing the agent, you can also ask questions on the same topics in the form of “How do you” or “Will you” questions.
I know there are more good questions out there. What are they?
You know the term "trust, but verify." Well, do it! If you are a seller, please, please look at your listings sheet. Ask a friend or a relative to go to your open house. Pay attention to what your agent is doing.
Once you know that your agent is doing his or her job, don't forget to pay attention to his/her advice when it comes to getting your house ready to show and keeping your possessions in a safe place.
Did you interview your agent? Did you get references? Does anyone have a "near miss" story of a agent that was fired before the damage was done?
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