Choosing the right brokerage is critical to real estate professionals. It significantly affects their opportunities, earnings, and overall professional growth.
Find out how your broker plans to market your home. Ask how they will differentiate your property from the competition and highlight its most desirable features.
Buying or selling a home is one of the most significant financial transactions most people make. Choose an agent with extensive experience to help ensure a smooth and profitable process.
Ask potential agents how many homes they’ve sold in the past year. This will give you a good idea of their experience level and how they’ve handled challenges. It’s also important to consider your unique situation when choosing an agent. First-time homebuyers, for example, often need more guidance than those who have purchased multiple properties or downsized in the past.
If you’re selling a luxury waterfront property, you may want an agent with experience working with high-end clients. You can also ask prospective brokers about their network and whether they have worked with professionals in your unique circumstances. Also, be sure to consider a brokerage’s culture. For example, some brokerages provide training, mentoring programs, and marketing support, while others don’t. Choose a brokerage that aligns with your professional goals and values.
A good reputation is vital in real estate, especially with new clients and other agents. A bad rep can cost an agent a lot of business, even if they’re the best at what they do.
Check out agents’ websites, social media, reviews, property listings, and more to understand how they professionally market themselves online. This can also give you a glimpse into their personalities and help you determine whether or not they’re the right fit for your unique home-buying or selling needs.
Ask the New Home Sales Broker for key statistics like how many homes they’ve sold this year, how quickly they’ve closed on properties, and whether they’ve worked with buyers like you. A good broker should have this information at their fingertips and be able to explain it clearly. Beware of a broker who says things that might raise red flags, such as telling you to avoid specific neighborhoods or that you can sign a buyer-broker agreement to bypass paying a commission on for-sale-by-owner houses.
While a broker’s experience and reputation are necessary, they should also be able to connect with you on a personal level. You want to find someone whose working style and personality match your own.
When choosing a home sales broker, ask about the commission rate they charge and any other fees associated with listing and selling your property. It’s not uncommon for a broker to negotiate on the commission rate, especially in high-demand markets.
In New York City, for example, a typical broker fee is around 6% of the home sale price. These fees are typically split between the seller’s and buyer’s agents. However, some brokers charge a flat rate for their services, like Houzeo. This can be an attractive option for FSBO sellers.
Client communication is critical before, during, and after a real estate transaction. If your clients feel that they need to trust you to communicate important details, they could change their minds about working with you in the future.
Ask your potential broker how they keep clients updated. For instance, ask how frequently they provide marketing and activity reports, whether by email or text message (note that some information is too sensitive for a text), and if they have a backup team to handle calls or emails when unavailable.
You should also find out how the broker promptly responds to buyer or seller questions. Ask if they can provide examples of their work. If they can’t, you should consider hiring a different agent.