So, ’cause we usually keep our promises, below are nine attributes (skills, services and masteries) of what an agent we’d be excited to hire to represent us should bring to the table:
1. Market Mastery – the agent understands the nuances of the local real estate market – at least the segment of it that affects ME!
2. MLS Mastery – the agent is intimately familiar with the MLS and therefore makes pricing recommendations based on data that is complete, relevant and accurate.
3. Contract (and Disclosure) Mastery – the agent understands and can explain each and every provision in the contracts and disclosures I’ll be asked to sign, and ensures that I understand how each provision affects me.
4. Pricing Expertise – related to #1, the agent understands the nuances of the specific market area(s) that I’m buying or selling in, and how various features and amenities (or lack thereof) affect the market value of the properties there.
5. Photography Skills (or willingness to hire a photographer) – the agent understands the importance of having great photos online and is willing to invest the time and money to either take great photos him or herself, or hire someone to do it.
6. Basic Understanding of Home Construction, Repair and Local Architecture – while I don’t expect my agent to be a licensed contractor, I do expect them to understand basic issues of home construction and repair so they can speak intelligently to me about issues that may arise during our transaction. This knowledge will enhance their credibility with me tremendously.
7. Good Problem-Solving and Negotiating Skills – the agent doesn’t fall apart and go all drama-queen (or king) on me when the going gets a little rocky. They stay calm and focused, and tackle the problem head-on. They are skilled, confident negotiators.
8. A Great Team – the agent has a great team. If I need a referral to the best lender, inspector, handyman, house-cleaner, structural contractor, roofer or painter in town, my agent knows who that is and will set me up.
9. Great Systems in Place to Track Transactions – the agent has detailed checklists and follow-ups in place so that things don’t slip through the cracks or get forgotten when they get busy or distracted.
So, whatcha’ think? Do these sound like the characteristics of an agent you’d hire to take care of your real estate transaction? Any others you’d like to add… or any of these you don’t think belong on the list?