Ask anyone who’s ever dealt with a real estate agent, let alone hired a realtor to buy or sell, and they’ll tell you some good horror stories filled with red flags to watch out for.
Realtors are One of the Least Trusted Professions
According to a Gallup poll, real estate agents are not a trusted profession as a whole. Coming in just above politicians and car salesman, there’s not much space to go any lower! This, is not the first time they’ve been this low, either. They have been at or near the bottom of trustworthiness in the eyes of consumers for a long time. Is it an earned moniker or unjustified?
Reasons Why Realtors are Not Trusted
There are many reasons why Realtors are not trusted as a whole. First, anyone in the position of sales is typically not going to have a good reputation to start because there have been so many bad apples. The lure of a quick buck tends to attract those who are good at taking advantage of innocent consumers. That said, most agents I know are regular hard-working people that care about the community they live in. It is quite easy to avoid the bad agents when you recognize the red flags. First, let’s go into some more reasons why real estate agents are not trusted.
Most real estate transactions involve a lot of money, sometimes people’s entire bank account. So it’s easy to see how this can add a lot of stress to the situation. Most real estate agents are bad at communication. This is the number 1 complain of consumers. Further, because realtors do this same work day in and day out, they don’t recognize what appears simple to them is incredibly complicated to the consumer.
Red Flags in Real Estate Agents
So can you trust realtors? The answer is yes AND no. However it is easy to separate the the good from the bad. Let’s take a look at some red flags to watch out for in real estate agents.
They are pushy or aggressive
Sometimes this can be good. If the agent has your best interests in mind and they channel this into getting a good deal for you, this can be a great thing. However, more often than not, they channel this energy into you to get you to sign when you’re not ready.
They don’t point out ways to maximize the value of your home
If your agent is focused on the contract and not ways to increase the value of your home in inexpensive ways, they are not acting in your best interest. In fact, they are probably just using your property as a lead generator.
They tell you what you want to hear
There are some agents who will “buy” your listing by telling you an above market price. Their next step, other than to generate leads for themselves, will be to constantly nag you for price reductions. If you say no, chances are your home will linger on the market until the contract expires.
They won’t share their list to sales price
This is a big one. You’ll be able to avoid an agent who “buys” listings because you’ll see how far away from the original list price that they finally sold your home at. Accurate pricing is one of the cornerstones of a trustworthy agent.
They accept a reduction in commission without negotiating
When negotiating a commission with the agent, a good agent will try to get their full asking amount. If they accept a lower amount without trying, how hard will they negotiate for you? Also, how much are they planning on spending to market your home if accepting a reduction is not painful for them?
They don’t communicate
I can’t tell you how many stories I’ve heard from sellers who said their realtor was their buddy when it was time to list, then disappeared until the home was about to expire and they wanted to re-list. A good real estate agent will have a communication plan or guarantee in place so you can get regular updates, even if there’s nothing to update you about.
How to Choose the Right Real Estate Agent
So now that you know what red flags to watch out for in real estate agents, how do you choose the right real estate agent to sell your home?
Ask them about the market stats
A good realtor should be able to tell you what the market is doing. A great realtor should be able to tell you what it’s going to do next. An extraordinary realtor will make videos and show you the stats.
Ask them about how they create targeted ad campaigns on social media
A good realtor should be able to tell you how they utilize social media. 97% of buyers start their home search online and 75% of them used social media to search for homes. However, just posting on your personal or business page is not enough. You have to build targeted ad campaigns to locate qualified buyers who would be interested in your property if you want to maximize your homes exposure. Ask for examples.
Ask them about the absorption rate
Most agents that I know can tell you what the average time to sell a home is and some can even tell you how many months of supply there is. These are easy to track as the MLS does it for us. However, the absorption rate is not tracked, it’s a calculation, and can pinpoint how long you can expect to be on the market. If your agent can’t answer this question for your home, they’re probably not planning to spend any money on marketing past the first week.
Avoiding Red Flags when Choosing Your Real Estate Agent
Now that you know the red flags to watch out for with real estate agents, and which questions to ask when interviewing them, you should have no problem picking out the best of the best. Even then, you should always trust, but verify, to make sure you’re fully informed and know exactly what’s going on.
If you’re thinking of buying or selling your home in the west Lewis County area, contact me today! I’d love to hear from you! Eren Millam – Managing Broker Premiere Property Group, LLC WA License No. 26933
Chehalis, WA 98532 | Centralia, WA 98531 | Adna, WA | Napavine, WA | Onalaska, WA 98570 | Rochester, WA 98579 | Vader, WA 98593 | Winlock, WA 98596 | Boistfort, WA
Call/Text: (360) 219-3616 | Email: Eren@LewisCountyHomes.com
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