One of the first steps you'll take as a seller is to find a reputable real estate agent. Often called a listing agent, this person represents your interests as the home seller and will play a significant role in the sale of your home.
What to look for in an agent
You'll want to choose an agent who you trust, are comfortable asking questions to, and can provide the knowledge and services you need. It's equally important that the listing agent is familiar with your neighborhood and can knowledgeably talk with potential buyers about your neighborhood, homeowners association and property taxes. Knowledge of your area will also help them price your home with confidence.
To find a listing agent you can trust, ask your colleagues, friends and family for referrals. Don’t be afraid to interview multiple agents or review their client references.
What to expect from your agent
Your agent should:
Provide you with a detailed market analysis based on similar homes in your local area and recommend a sale price. They will also factor in the condition of your home and other selling features that may affect the price, such as lot size and upgrades.
Discuss their strategy for selling your home and ensure it aligns with your goals for sales price and time on market. This should include an advertising plan for connecting with potential homebuyers and coordinating open houses and showings.
Advise on how you can best prepare your home for market. A good agent should provide sound advice on staging, repairs and potential improvements to make it more marketable or lift your home's value.
List your home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), an online database that lists homes for sale. Your agent is responsible for writing a detailed description of your home and uploading photos that represent it best.
Manage the negotiations and all related paperwork with the buyer, always working in your best interest.
Your real estate agent will be by your side throughout the selling process, so it’s important to choose someone you feel comfortable working with.