Thinking about selling your home? You might want a good real estate agent on your side. While there is no rule that says you have to work with a listing agent to sell your home, a real estate professional can help guide you through what can be a complicated and stressful process. Moreover, a good agent can help you find the most qualified buyer and get the greatest possible return on your investment.
But how do I find a good listing agent? This is what we will show you in this article. Keep reading as we unveil 7 different ways you can go about searching for and finding the right real estate agent for you (whether you’re a homeowner or a real estate investor selling for the first time!).
Understand What a Real Estate Agent Can Do for You
Before we go into the details of how to find a listing agent, let’s first have a look at the benefits of hiring one to sell your property. Here’s what a real estate agent can do for you:
- Price your property: The agent will pull real estate comps on the MLS to see how much other properties in your neighborhood sold for in recent weeks and decide on a good listing price for your house.
- Market your property: The agent will get the word out that your property is for sale and will advertise it to a large number of property buyers.
- Negotiate with property buyers: When you start receiving offers, your real estate agent will negotiate with potential buyers on your behalf to make sure you get the best real estate deal that you can.
- Close the sale: Once you’ve found a buyer and signed a contract with them, the agent will guide you through the home sale’s remaining steps, including negotiating property repair requests after inspection and dealing with any last-minute issues before closing.
Related: 10 Benefits of Hiring a Real Estate Agent
How to Find a Real Estate Agent to Sell Your House: 7 Ways
Now that you know what a listing agent can do for you, we can move on to the most important part: how to find a real estate agent. Here are 7 different ways you can go about finding one:
1. Get Referrals from Family and Friends
First on our list of how to find a real estate agent is to get referrals from people close to you. Chances are, someone you know has worked with a real estate agent in the past to sell their home or investment property. It could be a relative, a friend, a neighbor, or even a colleague from work. So, talk to everyone in your social circle and ask them if they can recommend a good real estate agent for you. This can be a great way to find an agent because your friends or your relatives wouldn’t let you work with an agent who couldn’t deliver quality service.
2. Search for Neighborhood Signs
Another way to find a real estate agent is to drive around your local real estate market and look for real estate agent signs. Usually, these can be found on billboards, the sides of a bus, park benches, bus stops, or the front yard of an investment property for sale. Other than real estate agent signs, you can also look for ‘For Sale’ signs. The listing agent’s name and contact information are typically written on them. Try to see which agent’s name appears most often in your community; this agent is likely to know the local market very well.
3. Attend Open Houses
Open houses are a great place to find real estate agents. Look up open houses happening near you and consider attending a few to meet the agents who are selling the houses. The great thing about open houses is that the work environment is not too formal and you can freely chat with the real estate agents over a drink. You may even find other real estate investors there who can refer you to the agents they work with. If you attend an open house, try to collect business cards and make notes about all the agents you meet. Also, pay attention to the way the agent is showing the house so you can be sure that he/she is the right real estate agent for you.
Related: What Is an Open House? A First Time Seller’s Guide
4. Use Real Estate Websites
If you prefer a more modern approach to finding a real estate agent, you have plenty of online options to choose from. You can find a ton of real estate websites on the internet that can refer an agent to you. Here are some of the best ones in the US:
If you visit Mashvisor’s Real Estate Agents Directory, you can filter the location where you want to find an agent by state and city. From there, you will get a list of the top-performing real estate agents in that location.
This real estate website can connect you to a realtor, which is a specific type of real estate agent. As a member of the National Association of Realtors, the realtor is required to meet a set of standards and follow a certain code of ethics. So, if you’re listing your home for sale with a realtor, you know you’ll have a great home selling experience with their personal assistance.
Related: The Best Real Estate Investing Websites Any Investor Must Know About
5. Check Social Media Sites
Social media sites are another good place to find real estate agents online. Search “real estate agents in [your community]” on Facebook or LinkedIn, and you will get a long list of agents in your market. When researching an agent’s social media page, have a look at the ratings and reviews to see what other sellers’ experience has been working with them. Also, pay attention to the agent’s overall social media strategy. Are they present on other social media platforms? Are they good at marketing the listings they have? Do they share quality content? Do they have a large number of followers? After all, you want to find an agent who is able to market your property to thousands of potential buyers looking for investment properties for sale on social media.
6. Look for Ads in Print Media
A more traditional way to find a real estate agent is through print media. Many real estate agents post ads in newspapers and other print media, for two main purposes: They want to sell property, and most importantly, they want to promote themselves. Look in the classified section of your local newspaper for property ads in your community, then look up the websites of the real estate agents who are advertising them. These agents could be specialists in your local real estate market. Checking for ads in specialized real estate magazines is also a good idea, but these usually come out on a weekly or monthly basis.
7. Visit a Real Estate Brokerage Firm
Last on our list of how to find a real estate agent is to check out real estate brokerage firms near you. All real estate agents normally work for real estate brokerages, so you can easily find a listing agent by visiting one of the brokerage firms in your neighborhood. When you walk in, state your intent of selling your property. The brokerage firm should then connect you to one of the real estate agents working for them.
Finding the Right Real Estate Agent
Now that you know how to find a real estate agent, put together a list of all the agents who you think might be suitable for you. Then, get in touch with them and ask to meet with them. You want to find out what their level of experience is, how well they are versed in the local real estate market, and get a feel for how well you would work together. It’s very important to find a real estate agent you’re comfortable with since you will be spending a lot of time together. All in all, you want the agent you choose to have your best interest, along with the skills and expertise to help you sell your home fast and for top dollar.