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Put Your Agent to the Test

Aug 17, 2007
At this stage in the home selling game, you've already interviewed your Agent candidates, and assuming one has passed your stringent standards and answered the interview questions to your satisfaction, you might be willing to give him or her a shot at listing your home for sale.

It's important to note the positing of the paragraph up above. You are the client, and potential employer for that matter, of this particular individual. You must keep yourself in a position of "why should I give you my business by hiring you today." You wouldn't rush into brain surgery by hiring the first doctor who raised his had and said he could do it. You would get a second opinion first and then ask for references of successful procedures they've accomplished.

Selling your home and hiring a real estate Agent to do so is no different and deserves a little effort in the beginning to ensure that you enlist the help of the very best Agent available- one who will sell your home for the highest price in the shortest amount of time.

So, the next step in the real estate Agent hiring process would be to ask the Agent for a couple of references of homeowners whose homes were successfully sold by them in the last 3 - 6 months. Notice that the question highlights the fact that you're looking for successfully sold references. That's your ultimate goal, and you should only speak to people who've achieved your desired result using the Agent's services. This will eliminate you having to call references that are the Agent's friends, uncles, cousins, etc. You want legitimate references to check.

If the prospective Listing Agent is truly good at what they do, they will already have a list of references that they would be honored to give you. They will likely also be fresh- in the sense that these are people who've achieved this desired result (selling their home) in the recent past. You want to make sure that you're checking references who have worked with the Agent within the last year (less than 6 months would be better).

Don't stop at calling only the one at the top of the list. Call a couple of their references and see if you can get a feel for how their home selling experience with the Agent was. Don't be shy, either. Evaluating their performance is critical to you making the right choice.

Try to also establish which of the following two categories the Agent fits into.

A "Stewardship" Selling Agent:

* Advises and Consults
* Educates and Directs
* Uses Judgment and Experience
* Is Irreplaceable
* Is Highly Compensated
* Focuses on the Client's Values and Needs

The Typical Agent:

* Is merely an Information Source
* Tells and Sells
* Stays away from Guiding the Client
* Follows the Rules and Procedures
* Is Replaceable by any other Agent
* Is looking to make a "One Time" Sale
* Focuses on the Agent

Once you are able to assess which areas your Agent satisfies, you will be able to clearly determine whether you are working with a Champion Agent!
About the Author
Dirk Zeller is the President & CEO of Real Estate Champions.

More Information:
More Help With Buying Homes, Buying In Greenville, Selling In Greenville
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