Urban Innovators: How to Find a Real Estate Agent with an Edge

by Urbane Property

It’s one of the most important job interviews of your life – and this time, you’re in the power seat. If you’re planning to sell a property, make time to sit down with at least three potential real estate agents and ask some hard-hitting questions. When your home is your biggest asset, a successful sale has the potential to be life-changing, catapulting you up the property ladder and boosting your financial security. A proactive, innovative agent can make all the difference, so start with these questions to find the best ally for your property sale.

HOW WILL YOU MARKET MY PROPERTY?

Online is a vital component of any property marketing campaign, with 86 per cent of potential buyers using online as their main tool to search for property, according to a Residential Consumer Property Seeker Report. Be aware that not all web listings are created equal, with premium options available to ensure your property appears in more searchers, and higher up on the list. At Urbane, we offer dynamic floorplans to show prospective buyers how their furniture will work within a home, and a kitchen styling option, enabling them to see how different colours and materials could transform the space.

CAN I SPEAK TO PAST VENDORS?

An agent isn’t going to hand over any negative testimonials, but speaking to recent sellers will give you a clearer insight into their experience. Ask things like: “were there any issues throughout the campaign? Is there anything the agent could have improved on?” and “how long did it take to sell your home?”

WHAT WILL MAKE MY HOME SHINE?

A savvy agent will provide advice on the best way to present your home and highlight its unique qualities. Property styling is widespread in the inner-west, and around half of Urbane Property’s clients now have their homes either fully or partially styled. In our patch of Sydney, we’re selling a lifestyle, along with bricks and mortar. Communicating that lifestyle through homewares and furniture can capture the hearts of prospective purchasers.

HOW DO YOU INSPIRE BUYERS?

Homes may have sold themselves during Sydney’s record housing boom, but in today’s cooling market, it’s not uncommon for a sale to come down to a one-on-one negotiation between the agent and the highest bidder. It’s here that an agent’s experience comes to the fore. Put an agent to the test by enquiring about a current listing. This will show you how quickly they respond, how they create excitement about the property, and how they respond to challenging questions.

ARE YOU EMBEDDED IN THE AREA?

An agent with deep knowledge of the local area will understand your home’s specific strengths and weaknesses in the market, and be able to provide a realistic valuation. Someone who can identify the selling points of your home will also be best equipped to showcase them to prospective purchasers.

HOW WILL WE COMMUNICATE?

Daily phone or email updates on any enquiries, offers or feedback will provide a clear picture of how your campaign is faring, setting your mind at ease and ensuring you’re fully informed when you agree to a sale.

WHAT SALE METHOD DO YOU RECOMMEND?

The vast majority of properties in the inner-west are sold via auction, but it shouldn’t be a default decision. If, for example, there’s an oversupply of properties similar to yours, a set price could give you an edge. Your agent should provide carefully considered advice based on your property and the current market conditions.

HOW MANY PURCHASERS DO YOU HAVE LOOKING FOR A HOME LIKE MINE?

A proactive agent will have a network of prospective purchasers and may have a few targets in mind before the online queries start rolling in. Ask about homes they’ve sold recently, and whether they’ve kept in touch with the parties who missed out.

WHO AM I DEALING WITH?

A successful agent will be part of a strong team. That said, you also want to make sure the agent you choose will be personally involved in every step of the process. Find out what their level of involvement will be – if they’ll be at every open home, or if they will send a representative. While you’re at it, check that their real estate licence is valid through onegov.nsw.gov.au.

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