Looking for a Realtor®? We reached out to Phil Haig, award-winning Tri-Cities Realtor® and the leader of Team Phil Haig, for his top 10 tips on what to ask any Realtor® before you hire them.
1. Experience matters: Ask the prospective Realtor® how long they’ve been in the business and what length of time they’ve been selling in the local market, says Haig.
“A better question might actually be to ask the Realtor® if he or she has another job,” he adds. “You want to know if being a Realtor® is their primary occupation, because it should be. Otherwise, it can quickly become frustrating if you’re trying to reach your Realtor® on their lunch break and you can’t get an answer.”
2. Ask for the time to review any document before signing. Not only is it a best practice with any contract, it’s your legal right.
3. Ask how the proposed marketing plan will meet your needs.Or simply ask for the name of their Marketing Director.
“There’s a lot that goes into selling a home,” says Phil. “If a Realtor is doing it all on their own, they’re spending 95% of their time on paperwork and administrative details. If they work with an experienced team, they can deliver a lot more value. We have a dedicated Marketing Director that handles marketing, for example. We also have assistants that handle the paperwork so that we can focus on helping our clients buy or sell a home.”
4. Ask for References: If the person can’t supply credible references, move on.
5. Ask what happens if you’re unhappy with their service.
“If a Realtor®refuses to cancel their listing, ask to speak to their manager right away,” says Phil. “Clients should be able to cancel at any time. Of course, if you do a good job, cancellation procedures tend to be irrelevant. But it’s still good to be aware of your rights.”
6. Does the prospective Realtor®try to convince you to sign based on their sales ratios? “Internal numbers can be manipulated to influence the public,” says Phil. “We keep track of sales ratios, of course, but we don’t use them for advertising.”
7. Ask if the Realtor® can help you find other professionals you might need during the process. The best Vancouver Realtors®have a rolodex filled with the names of the best home inspectors, staging directors, renovators, lawyers, financial advisors and more, says Phil. It should be a part of the service they offer.
8. Ask what their commission breakdown is. Commissions are negotiable and may differ from broker to broker. You should get a clear breakdown of the commission structure before hiring your Realtor®, not after.