Home Sellers How to Work Well with Your Listing Agent
How to Get the Most Out of Your Listing Agent When Selling
Selling a house can be an incredible opportunity to cash in on your major investment. Before you can officially sell your house, there are a few steps you need to take. From staging and marketing to dealing with interested buyers, the house selling process can easily become overwhelming for anyone. Luckily, our home HomeHunt agents are available to help you with this endeavor. If you’re ready to sell your home, working with a listing agent can help streamline the process and improve the selling price.
What is a Listing Agent?
You may have heard certain terms such as listing agent, selling agent, or buyer’s agent. A listing agent is a professional realtor that represents the seller during a real estate transaction. Additionally, a listing agent is responsible for listing homes for sale and working with the seller to sell the house at an ideal price. Working with a listing agent can provide a wide array of benefits, including:
- Gaining professional consultation
- Determining the asking price for your home
- Marketing and selling your home
- Recommending other professionals
- Scheduling showings
- Communicating and negotiating on your behalf
After Hiring a Listing Agent
Once you hire a listing agent to help you with the complex task of selling your home, it is important to find the right one. Here are a few tips from our HomeHunt agents on how to work successfully with your listing agent:
1. Find the right listing agent
Finding the right listing agent to sell your home can be a process within itself. Take the time to do your research and find out about a potential agent’s experience, references, and qualifications. While most agents work with both buyers and sellers, there are certain agents that specialize in only one or the other. Consider hiring an agent that has experience in:
- Selling homes in your neighborhood
- Selling homes within your price point
- Different types of property
- Solid, above-average sales-to-list price ratio
Once you narrow down the list, interview each one that you are interested in. Ask questions about their experience, how many homes they sold last year, what marketing ideas they have for your home, and any other relevant questions. Likewise, it is important to choose someone you feel comfortable communicating with and someone who has the skills required for this task. Your listing agent will act as your counselor and confidante during every step of the selling process.
2. Schedule an initial walkthrough to create your marketing plan
While a listing agent will usually conduct a walkthrough of your home during the interview process, you may require a more thorough walkthrough if you work with each other. During this guided tour, listen to your agent with an open mind. For instance, listing agents will evaluate your property through an objective lens, noting things that may require attention before potential buyers come by. Be ready to take notes and discuss the following information to create a custom-tailored marketing plan:
- The basics of your home: Square footage, lot size, HOA fees, utility costs, property taxes, recent repairs, upgrades, and so on.
- Known concerns with your home: Older appliances or fixtures, exterior or interior damage, structural issues, and more.
- Selling homes within your price point
- Your budget for upgrades and repairs: Your total budget is available for any cosmetic or necessary upgrades or repairs.
3. Work together to create your pricing strategy based on your listing agent’s CMA.
As part of their listing services, your agent will conduct a comparative market analysis (CMA) to help you determine a listing price. This analysis will assess recently sold properties that are comparable to yours within the area. Pricing will increase based on anything your home has that is considered added value, like new flooring or an open floor plan. Other factors can also reduce the value of your home, which will be considered during this analysis. Your listing agent will utilize this data to help you understand how your home compares to others before you set your listing price. They’ll consider the following information for their CMA:
- Sold prices with house conditions for every comparable property
- Foreclosures and short sales for outlier comparable properties
- Impact of market trends on pricing
TIP: Don't be afraid to ask your listing agent questions about their CMA and why they chose that listing price. They will be happy to walk you through it.
4. Review your home’s listing description for specific highlights.
Even though your listing agent will have the expertise to market what makes your home unique based on what buyers are looking for, they will not have the same experience you do from living in your home. Take the time to review all your home's wonderful features with your listing agent.
5. Determine what a winning offer looks like to you.
Having a clear, defined goal is important for both you and your listing agent to discuss. This is crucial before you start taking offers. Take the time to consider your needs, what you are flexible on, and what a winning offer would entail. Once you determine this, share your vision with your agent. As a result, your agent will explain different contract terms that may sweeten the deal or provide explanations on things they think may not be viable.
Remember, your listing agent should explain what an ideal offer looks like. They will also provide an itemized list of expenses and credits for your final sale price. If your buyer has a significant list of repairs or requests based on the home inspection report, your agent can provide clear guidance during tense moments and guide you in the right direction.
HomeHunt Can Connect You With an Experienced Listing Agent
Working with the right listing agent can make all the difference when it comes to selling your home. At HomeHunt, our experienced selling experts can help you navigate through this complicated process, ensuring you receive the best price and terms for your property.