Question #1- How long have you been in residential real estate sales? Is it your full-time job? While experience is no guarantee of skill, real estate — like many other professions — is mostly learned on the job.
Question #2- Do you have any office assistants and if so, who will I be dealing with most often?
Question #3- On average, how many days does it take you to sell a home? How does that compare to the overall market? The REALTOR® you interview should have these facts on hand and be able to present market statistics from the local MLS to provide a comparison.
Question #4- How close to the initial asking prices of the homes you sold were the final sale prices? This is one indication of how skilled the REALTOR® is at pricing homes and marketing to suitable buyers. Of course, other factors may also be at play, including an exceptionally hot or cool real estate market.
Question #5- What types of specific marketing systems and approaches will you use to sell my home? You don’t want someone who’s going to put a For Sale sign in the yard and hope for the best. Look for someone who has aggressive and innovative approaches, and knows how to market your property competitively on the Internet. Buyers today want information fast, so it’s important that your REALTOR® is responsive.
Question #6- Can you recommend service providers who can help me obtain a mortgage, make home repairs and help with other things I need done? Because REALTORS® are immersed in the industry, they’re wonderful resources as you seek lenders, home improvement companies and other home service providers. Practitioners should generally recommend more than one provider and let you know if they have any special relationship with or receive compensation from any of the providers.
Question #7- What type of support and supervision does your brokerage office provide to you? Having resources such as in-house support staff, access to a real estate attorney and assistance with technology can help an agent sell your home.
Question #8- What’s your business philosophy? While there’s no right answer to this question, the response will help you assess what’s important to the agent and determine how closely the agent’s goals and business emphasis mesh with your own.
Question #9- How will you keep me informed about the progress of my transaction? How frequently? Again, this is not a question with a correct answer, but how you judge the response will reflect your own desires. Do you want updates twice a week or do you prefer not to be bothered unless there’s a hot prospect? Do you prefer phone, e-mail or a personal visit?
Question #10- Could you please give me the names and phone numbers of your 5 most recent clients? Ask recent clients if they would work with this REALTOR® again. Find out whether they were pleased with the communication style, follow-up and work ethic of the REALTOR®.