Editor’s Note: This periodic sponsored Q&A column is written by Adam Gallegos of Arlington-based real estate firm Arbour Realty. The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com. Please submit follow-up questions in the comments section or via email.
A reader asks: How should I go about choosing a Realtor to sell my house?
I’ve made my living off of referrals so obviously I am biased towards the recommendations of people you know, like and trust. But, let’s just say you don’t know anyone who can provide a good referral.
You could go old school and write down the names you are seeing most frequently on for sale signs near you home. Preferably, you would also get some feedback from the homeowner about their experience working with the Realtor.
Try Googling your neighborhood to see if there are some Realtors writing about your particular neighborhood. It’s a good way to preview their market expertise.
You may want to look at online reviews on Yelp, Google Places or Angie’s List. I think that Yelp would be my top choice. Yelp is developing into good source for finding Realtors based on reviews. It also allows you to search based on location to help filter out realtors who don’t specialize in Arlington.
Okay, so you have a few names, now what?
Recently I received an email from a homeowner I had never met before. He introduced himself and the home he and his wife were planning to sell. He then requested my response to the following questions.
- Do you work full-time or part-time as a real estate agent?
- How many homes have you sold in my neighborhood?
- How many other sellers are you representing now?
- Will you handle all aspects of my transaction or will you delegate some tasks to a sales associate or administrative assistant?
- What are your fees and are they negotiable?
- At what price do you think my home can sell given the current market?
- Can you give me a comparative market analysis (CMA) of recent sales in the area and homes currently on the market?
- What does your marketing package contain in addition to a comparative market analysis?
- Can I list the house with you for 60 to 90 days?
- Is your license in good standing?
- How many years of education and experience do you have?
- Are you also a broker and/or a Realtor?
- Can you provide me with the names and phone numbers of past clients who have agreed to be references?
I like this RFP approach. Before you invest any time meeting with a Realtor, you can get some of your basic questions answered. It’s a great way to narrow down the pool of Realtors you are considering.
I should point out that I am now working with the person who sent me the questionnaire inserted above and he let me know that he based the questionnaire off of an article he found on homegain.com.
Like the seller in my example, you will want to customize the questions you ask to fit your requirements. You should also have a general idea of the answers you hope to receive.
Once you have received answers from the Realtors you have queried, you should select the top two or three to meet with in person. Ask them to show you examples of the marketing they are currently providing to clients. Have them walk you through their pricing analysis and recommendations. You’ll also want to discuss commission and come to an agreement that you are all comfortable with. Be sure to ask if there are any additional fees that they or their brokerage will be charging you (i.e. admin fees). I think it is also important to review a “net sheet” to understand exactly what your proceeds will be after closing costs.
I hope this helps you find a Realtor you will want to work with and recommend for years to come.
Please keep the questions coming: [email protected]
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“Probing the highly imaginative, inspired mind of Teresa Oaxaca is not altogether unlike having a present-day conversation with an Old Master,” says Nashville Arts Magazine.
Here is an unusual opportunity to learn from this incredibly talented and accessible artist, at Art House 7’s two-day oil painting workshop in October. Teresa will give 2 portrait painting demonstrations for 3 hours each morning. Students will then be painting from a clothed live model. Teresa will offer individual critiques that focus on materials, techniques, process and artistic vision. You’ll get jazzed up about painting and become more confident about your abilities.
Art House 7, Two-Day Oil Painting Workshop with Teresa Oaxaca. Saturday, October 22 and Sunday, October 23, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. EDT $250.
See more about Teresa Oaxaca here. Art House 7 5537 Langston Blvd., Arlington, Va. 22207
Validating one’s emotions has the power to heal, transform, and empower. What Is Validation? Every human being has feelings. We all have emotions that change over time, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. The question isn’t whether we feel; it’s how we handle feelings once they arise.
Building strategies to understand emotions is essential to positive mental health, and validation is one effective skill to practice.
Emotional validation is the process of understanding, embracing, and actively listening to another person’s feelings (or your own).
Understanding someone’s emotions doesn’t necessarily mean you approve of how they are feeling or reacting to something. You can be supportive in acknowledging and validating an emotional experience without agreeing or diminishing it. Validation is a skill to learn and improve over time. It may take practice, but the effort is most certainly worth it. Emotional validation has the power to enhance interpersonal communication and foster strong relationships.
Are you ready to buy your first home, but concerned about saving for a down payment? Grab a drink and join us for 45 minutes to learn more about how you can buy your first house with 3%, 5%, or