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Monday, June 04, 2007

Hiring a Real Estate Company - the first step

So you want to sell your house? How do you choose the real estate company that you will trust with such a major event? There are many available checklists out there telling you how to interview a real estate agent. Asking the right questions in selecting an agent is important. But, the more important issue is never addressed. The most critical issue (and first step) is deciding on the company(ies) you choose to interview. Should you go with one of the "big box" brokerages such as Century 21? Should you consider the local independent office? Remember, the agent is an extension of the office so the office selection is vital.

Before hiring any real estate agent I suggest you visit the office. Even before making any appointment to speak with an agent, stop by the office, unannounced. See if the office has a professional appearance. What type of reception do you receive? Is the location appealing to "drop by" traffic? The office sets the tone for the type of support you will receive. After all, the office will be scheduling most of the showings. The office will be responding to initial inquiries. What type of visibility does the office enjoy within your community? Although it is true that most real estate agents work from home, they do go to the office at some point. Remember, you are hiring a company, not just an agent.

Some points to consider when selecting the real estate broker include "Where is your buyer going to be coming from?" Do you live in a small market where there are not a lot of folks relocating from outside your local geographical area? Or, are there major employers in your community that bring in folks who are not familiar with the area? If you are selling to a small local buyer's pool, then maybe the local independent broker will get the job done. However, selling real estate is a global business in most markets. I suggest the direction to take is going with a "big box" real estate company. Why? Because real estate marketing is global and the "big box" companies provide a more sophiticated system of support and marketing.

If you say Century 21 I am sure most, if not all those you ask, will know it is a real estate company. The people with the "gold jacket." The name Century 21 has a reputation for high quality. Offices are located worldwide. The internet presence of Century 21 through its corporate website is tremendous. These formal networks allow agents to communicate with each other and find someone they can trust for a referral in the case of relocations from out of the area.

Now that you have decided on the company it i time to go visit the office!

Florida Licensed real estate agent with Century 21 Baytree Realty, Melbourne Florida. Former U.S. Navy officer and healthcare administrator. Received BS in Health Sciences from The George Washington University, Master of Public Administration (MPA) from Troy University.

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