Sometimes we REALTORS® forget that most people are not experienced home sellers. There are some homeowners who haven’t been involved in a real estate transaction for 30 years or more. In addition, real estate is often the largest investment most of us will ever own. For these reasons, it is so important that sellers know what to expect when hiring a REALTOR®.
Current statistics indicate about 94% of people shop online for a home. Ideally, the online viewer sees beautiful photos of a home and calls their agent to request a showing. To have beautiful photos you need a beautiful home. Staging has more than proven its ability to sell a home for more money. (see my Blog on Staging). Staging is worth it whether your home is selling for $200,000 or $2,000,000. Once your home is staged, you must have professional photos and a lot of them. This is non-negotiable. Do not let your agent shoot the photos with their phone or their camera. This is unfair to you. Make sure they hire a professional real estate photographer to present your home at its very best. The reason you want a lot of photos is that a). people want to see interior and exterior details and b). websites will often rank listings by the number of photos, pushing homes with the most photos to the top of the search results.
You should also request a printout of the MLS sheet so you can proof the information for accuracy and see how your home is being presented. I see so many mistakes in the listing data including the wrong schools. If a buyer is searching for homes based on specific data and that data is wrong, one small input error can mean a huge percentage of potential buyers will never see this home that actually meets their criteria. Since our MLS data feeds to the major real estate websites, that erroneous information is now on REALTOR®.com, Zillow, Trulia, etc.
Finally, you want to make sure your agent requests feedback from every show. You need to know if there is something wrong so you can address it sooner rather than later. Many times a buyer sees something and makes an incorrect assumption. If I know the buyer’s concern or need, I can address it with their agent immediately.
These are just a few suggestions and the minimum you should expect from the person representing your largest investment.