Selling a residential property is always an emotional time for property owners. It is also a time of big expectations – how much money will they get for their home and how long will it take to sell? While pricing a property correctly is essential to attracting serious buyers, the first step sellers need to take is selecting an agent to work with in the marketing and sale of their home.
“This is perhaps the most crucial step in the whole process,” says Debbie Justus-Ferns, divisional manager of Renprop Residential Sales. “The agent a seller chooses to work with will influence the entire process and the sale prospects in the correct marketing of your home. Therefore making a careful choice when it comes to agent selection is vital.”
As many sellers request valuations and marketing proposals from numerous estate agents, how do they know which agent is the right one for them to work with? Justus-Ferns lays out some basic questions she believes every seller should ask the agent or agents they want to work with:
- Do you have a valid Fidelity Fund Certificate?
- How long have you sold properties for in this area?
Setting the sale price:
- What price can I achieve for my home?
- How would you justify that this price is correct for the current market?
Comparative properties for sale in the area:
- How many properties are currently on the market in this area?
- Is my property selling price market related to compete with other properties currently in this price range?
Current sales in the area:
- What have the selling prices been for similar properties in the last six months?
- How long were these homes on the market?
- What was the actual selling price compared to the marketing price advertised?
- How long is it currently taking to sell properties in this market?
Marketing my property:
- Do you have a marketing plan to showcase my property?
- Is there anything you would recommend to enhance the condition of my home?
- What is the time period that I should give you a sole mandate to sell my home?
- Who do you think would buy my home?
- What features of my home would attract a buyer and how can we highlight this to a potential buyer?
- Are you using a professional photographer to take photographs of my home?
- Will I receive weekly updates from you on the progress of my sale?
- Will you always accompany the buyer to view my property?
- Do you pre-qualify the potential buying power of a prospect buyer ?
- Do you plan on hosting show days?
- What costs will I be liable for as the seller?
- Must I disclose any known defects of my home to the purchaser?
- Must I give notice to my bank on my current bond on the property?
- Must I continue to pay home insurance on my property?
- What compliance certificates am I responsible for providing to the purchasers?
Asking these questions will give sellers a good idea of the time and money involved in the sale of their property. “Selling a home needn’t be a stressful time. That is why working with a professional agent who can provide you with solid answers to the questions above and any other questions you may have is the best way forward,” Justus-Ferns concludes.