Getting ready to sell your old home with a real estate agent? There are several things to consider before you hire an agent including your budget, schedule, and more.

If you’re thinking of selling your home, it’s important to know what you’re getting into. It might seem like a simple process, but there are many things that need to be considered before you hire an agent.

On top of the stress of getting your home prepared to sell (including thorough cleaning, renovations and repairs, and inspections and appraisals) you need to consider who will be selling your home. You’re going to want to find a real estate agent that knows the market, fits into your budget, can work with your schedule, comes with strong references, is professional, will respect your decisions as a seller, will work hard to sell your old home quickly, and is compatible with you.

Let’s take a closer look at these seven things to consider before hiring a real estate agent for your old home:

1) A Keen Understanding of Current Market Trends

When you’re putting your trust in someone to get you the most for your old home, you want the comfort of knowing that, well, they know what they’re doing!  A great agent will have a keen understanding of current market trends and how to capitalize on them. They’ll know when is the best time to put your home on the market, what price range is optimal for certain markets, and they’ll have a solid knowledge of techniques that can help draw in buyers.

2) Fitting Into Your Budget

Buying and selling real estate takes a major toll on your finances. When handling such a large purchase and sale, you want to be sure that you get the most for your old home, but that doesn’t mean you should break the bank either.

Some agents are more expensive than others, so it’s important to find one who works within your price range. A good agent will be open about their fees before they start working with you and make sure you feel comfortable with what they’re charging.

3) Work With Your Schedule

The last thing anyone wants to feel is stressed and overwhelmed, and that’s exactly the type of mindset you want to avoid when selling your old home.  An excellent real estate agent will be flexible and accommodating when it comes to their client’s schedules. They’ll make sure they’re able to show your home when you’re available and will be easy to get a hold of.

Another factor to consider before hiring a listing agent is how busy they are. Ask them outright how many clients they’re currently dealing with. You don’t want to get lost in the shuffle because they’ve bit off more than they can chew.

4) Great References and Recommendations

Having a great reputation in the business is a good sign of how well an agent will do selling your old home. You want to work with someone who has a long list of satisfied clients and glowing recommendations, so make sure you ask them about their references.

If you’re able to speak to past clients, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Some questions you may want to ask include:

  • What’s their communication style and how often did you hear from your agent?
  • Did you feel pushed into your decisions?
  • Would you work with this agent again?

5) Professionalism and Respect for Your Decisions

As a home seller, you want to be sure that you’re working with someone who respects your decisions and will treat you as the homeowner. An agent should never make you feel like they know better than you or push their own opinions onto you.

One way to be certain that an agent is respectful of your decisions is by asking them how they would handle certain situations. For example, you can say something like, “Our friend offered us $750,000 for our old home. Do you think that’s a good deal?” You’ll get an idea of how professional they are and if they will be able to stay out of the negotiation process while working on your behalf.

6) The Amount of Time it Will Take to Sell Your Home

With an ever-changing market, it’s hard to know exactly how long it’ll take to sell your home. If you’re on a short timeline or need a quick sale, make sure that the agent you hire is someone who will work efficiently and quickly. Ask them upfront about how long they think it will take to sell your home and what you can expect once they start working for you.

7)  Compatibility: Are They Able to Work With You

At the end of the day, you want to find someone who is compatible with your personality and work style. If you’re not comfortable around an agent, it’ll be hard for them to sell your home quickly.

Feel free to ask what their ideal client is like or you can even describe your lifestyle and let them know if it sounds like a good fit. Don’t be afraid to interview multiple real estate agents from different agencies. A great agent will be easy to talk to and will not be phased by multiple rejections.