Selling real estate is a complex and time-consuming process, which is why you get the best results by hiring a real estate agent with expertise in the area in which you are selling whether you are upgrading from your Grayton Beach bungalow or are trading in your Rosemary Beach condo for one in Mirimar Beach.
It’s All about the Relationship There generally comes a point in every property owner’s life when they decide it is time to sell. As anyone who has ever sold real estate before can attest, the process is much more comprehensive than simply putting out a sign and waiting for buyers.
A successful sale requires you to
- Read the market
- List the house appropriate
- Market the property
- State the property
- Vet offers
- Negotiate the transaction
Selling property is a full time job, which is why many homeowners hire a realtor to facilitate the real estate selling process. Your realtor will function as your advisor throughout the process; they will advocate for you and will see your interests through from start to finish.
Trust is a Must
Thus, your real estate agent must be someone you trust. You should trust their personal and professional judgment; you should trust them for pricing advice. Never select a realtor just because they are your friend; your realtor should be someone whose professional track record and perspective you agree with.
To find a realtor you trust, locate two or three with experience in the area you’re planning to sell in. Schedule an interview with each prospective realtor. Find out:
- What has the realtor sold recently? Are the properties similar to yours? Are the price points similar?
- Where were the properties sold? Were they in a similar location? If you’re selling luxury beach real estate, for example, you’ll want a realtor who has experience handling similar properties.
- How long were recent sales on the market? Sometimes, this is out of the realtor’s hands, but a proactive realtor will –on average—have faster closing times.
- How long has the realtor been in business full time? An experienced realtor will have more expertise and practice in doing whatever it takes to sell your home; they will also have more contacts (inspectors, appraisers, repairmen, etc.).
- What is the realtor’s business philosophy? When asking this question, you’re looking to see that the realtor’s professional POV gels with yours. You need to get along with your realtor and agree with how they do business.
In addition to conducting the interview, ask for contact information from recent clients; if the realtor you’re interested in has favorable reviews from previous clients, then you’ll be able to enter into the relationship with greater confidence.
Your Realtor, Your Advocate
Once you’ve made your decision, you and your realtor will begin strategizing the best way to market your property. The time and effort it takes to market a property is one of the top reasons to hire a realtor to facilitate your sale versus doing a for sale by owner.
Marketing real estate is not only time consuming, it is also strategic. More goes into marketing than putting a sign in the yard and writing a catchy listing and posting it online. Your realtor will gather information about the property from you to help personalize the listing. Your real estate agent will also determine an attractive price based on the home’s market value. Additionally, he or she will help you stage the home to show and sell and will take photos for the listing.
- Listing online: Realtors have access to Multiple Listing Service (MLS) sites, which disseminates broadly disseminates you listing to other realtors and to buyers interested in your area who have signed up to receive notifications
- Contacts: Realtors have contacts and new contacts they meet with daily; any one of these individuals might be someone who is a perfect match for the home you’re selling.
- Open house: Your realtor advertises, coordinates, and operates the open house. You’re welcome to provide intimate details about the home before the open house, so the realtor is able to communicate that to guests.
Once you’ve received an offer, your realtor will act as a liaison between the offering party and you. They will advise on whether or not the offer is a sound offer; how, if, and why you should counteroffer; and what terms and contingencies are appropriate.
Another aspect of negotiating is ensuring you have a legally binding contract between you and the offering party. Realtors have purchase agreements specific to the state you are selling in available; the legalities of selling on 30A in Florida, for example, might be slightly different from those in Alabama or in nearby Georgia. Your realtor can also translate dense legal verbiage standard to such documentation, so you can conduct yourself in a manner most beneficial to your interests.
Once you and the buyer have come to an agreement, your realtor will facilitate the rest of the process, and before you know it, you will have sold your home. The best part is, when you are ready to buy, you already have a trusted industry contact who knows you and who can get you where you want to live.
Whether you’re selling a primary or secondary residence or relocating from one side of 30A to the other, coastal living expert, Melissa Clements, is a friendly, motivated, local realtor who can help you sell your home and can help you get into your next one. From Blue Mountain Beach to Panama City, Melissa is a trusted name in buying and selling Florida Panhandle real estate.