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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Arlington and its neighbors have become more segregated in the last 10 years while fair housing legislation at the state level faces significant roadblocks. Arlington’s fair housing enforcement, education, and commitment to equity practices in housing policy and programs are beginning to show signs of improvement but much more needs to be done.
Join the NAACP Arlington Branch, HOME of Virginia, and Equal Rights Center for the 2nd Annual Arlington Fair Housing Conference on April 15th to discuss the threats and opportunities to advancing fair housing policy across the state and within Arlington.
The half-day, in-person event will feature speakers from fair housing advocacy organizations and government agencies including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and focus on fair housing policy trends in Virginia and Arlington County. The conference aims to advance the understanding of issues and policies related to equity and affirmatively further fair housing among local officials, advocates, and members of the public.
2nd Annual Arlington Fair Housing Conference
Is home ownership a goal of yours in 2023? Now is the time to make it happen! Grab a (virtual) drink with the area’s top Real Estate experts, learn all about the home buying process and on how you can get $1,500 towards your closing costs immediately!
Did you know the average Arlington renter will spend $150K in 5 years of renting? Stop paying down someone else’s mortgage! Join us for a Rent vs. Buy Happy Hour on Wednesday, April 5th at 6 p.m. via Zoom. If this time doesn’t work, we also are offering times convenient for your schedule!
A lot has happened in the local market since the beginning of the pandemic. Sip on your drink of choice and learn from Northern Virginia, Arlington and Washingtonian Magazines top producing agents! We will discuss the latest market updates, the home buying process and rent vs. buy cost savings. Please RSVP by clicking here.
Call/text Manavi at 703-869-6698 with any questions!
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