Selling your home is a big deal, and choosing the right person to sell it for you can be a difficult decision. What kind of qualities should you look for in a real estate agent to be sure you make the best choice? Here are eight general character traits and professional qualities commonly found in successful real estate agents. While an agent may not possess every last one, this list may help you define the qualities most important to you and your situation, and assist you in making your choice.
An ambitious agent is usually a real estate agent who will work hard for you. Selecting an agent who is driven to achieve great results for themselves in the real estate industry means you’ll be in the best position to take advantage of their efforts. The agent will be driven to sell your house for the best possible price and secure the best deal for you, their vendor. Beyond ambition, do you also sense the real estate agent has a sense of purpose? Do they display a passion not just for the real estate industry but perhaps for something more altruistic, such as supporting local charity or community initiatives? All these determined characteristics are good qualities to demonstrate the agent’s willingness to work hard for you.
Honesty, transparency and trustworthiness are all traits which determine a real estate agent’s level of integrity. Can you trust what they claim about their own performance, previous sales and so on? It’s fairly simple to find out if you have any doubts. A Google search on an expired listing will often still show the details you’re looking for in terms of who sold the home and when. Real estate agents in NZ also have minimum professional standards to maintain, and all real estate brands have their own guidelines within which their agents are expected to operate. If an agent has testimonials, feel free to ask them for a contact of someone who has dealt with the agent before and is willing to talk to a potential client. Yes, that person is likely to be in favour of the agent, but even by talking to someone directly you may be able to learn more than just by reading their testimonials. It’s not a bad idea to employ good old Google again here, and directly search up a potential real estate agent’s name. Not only will you likely capture any news articles- good or not so good- concerning that agent, you may even learn some more about their personality in the meantime, and that’s never a bad thing when selecting an agent from a group of likely candidates. A service like MyPitchList is also invaluable in providing sales history and information on each agent you view.
Your real estate agent doesn’t have to have the largest or most effusive personality in the room - in fact that’s a downright put-off for a lot of people - as long as they display a sense of amiability, or the ability to get on with others. Of course, there are always exceptions, and there are as many personality types in real estate as there are in any other profession, but as a rule a successful real estate agent is pretty good at getting along with people, and often has a natural or acquired affinity for making people feel at ease. These traits are important in building relationships, an essential component of operating a successful real estate business, as well as in negotiation, the crucial deciding factor in nailing a great result for any vendor. Again, the agent doesn’t need to be possessed of a heap of in-your-face energy, but getting a positive vibe from them is vital. If you feel the agent is giving off the right kind of energy, your potential home buyers will too. Lastly, you’ll want your real estate agent to be an effective networker, in order for them to promote your listing effectively and cast their net as widely as possible for the perfect buyer.
This is a word which sums up a range of different qualities seen in the most successful real estate agents. An agent needs to stay open and curious, and to maintain good attention to detail with a strong work ethic in order to stay on task for their clients. Resourcefulness allows an agent the flexibility they need to be ready to maximise opportunities and secure the best deal for you. These all-important traits are also essential for your agent to be a persistent, responsive problem-solver for you and your property. Spotting resourcefulness can be challenging at first, so stay alert in your initial dealings with an agent. You’ll be looking for someone who’s interested to hear your story, asks thoughtful questions about you and your situation, and makes considered suggestions about how you can show off your property to its best advantage, or which features you’ll want to highlight.
Effective communication is an absolute prerequisite for a successful real estate agent these days, and some technological know-how goes a long way too. There are so many different ways to communicate now, and an agent will do well to embrace the range of options and be able to be effective across a multitude of communication channels. Whether it’s written letters, emails or texts, chatting via social media or old-style telephone calls, an agent should be responsive, timely and clear in their communication. How they perform in communicating with you, is likely how effective they’ll be with your potential buyers, so don’t dismiss this important point. A ‘gift of the gab’ style may have stood an agent well in the past, but these days both vendors and purchasers expect more from a real estate professional. Using marketing to their best advantage is another way an agent may impress you with their communication skills.
Skilled not only in the machinations of the real estate industry and adept at handling your particular property, a successful real estate agent will also understand the local market and be attuned to what potential buyers are looking for. The ability to listen well and to negotiate are important skills a successful agent is likely to have worked on developing. Emotional intelligence and a person’s sensitivity to or empathy with others and their unique situation is also a big plus.
Not all agents can be long in the tooth with a string of house sales under their belt, but these are not the only ways to prove experience. An agent may have worked in tandem with a mentor or other more senior agent for a time; this counts equally as experience in the field. A real estate agent may also bring years of experience to the job from another career or profession, and this may give them a distinct advantage over their peers. An agent may simply have been around the property market a good deal, or may be otherwise schooled up on the industry. Experience comes in many guises but a transparent desire to communicate their level and type of experience is arguably the best way to determine whether a real estate agent’s experience fits with your expectations.
The generalisation is no less true; a jaded real estate agent with no passion left for the industry is unlikely to give your listing the energy it deserves, and the end result may well disappoint. A sense of enthusiasm for property in general, and your property in particular, speaks volumes about an agent’s willingness to go the extra mile for their vendor. Enthusiasm is infectious, too, and if you find yourself inspired by your real estate agent’s zest for your property, you can be sure those potential vendors will pick up on it too. Optimism is definitely a virtue in the world of real estate, and a positive attitude can make all sorts of potentially tense or stressful situations that little bit easier.
To sum up…. Reviewing this list of eight amazing qualities to look for in a real estate agent may have you wondering: where you can possibly find such a real estate superhero? Remember, a sense of humility, earnestness and gravitas can be important too. We are all made up of a mix of characteristics and real estate agents are no exception. Doing a little homework when assessing a real estate agent’s potential is a smart way to go beyond your initial impression in considering whether that agent is the right fit for you and your property, but instincts also play an important role. If your first impressions of an agent give you a sense of their ambition, honesty, friendliness or enthusiasm, or if you feel they’ve communicated effectively with you in a responsive manner and seem to have the knowledge and experience you feel will help sell your unique property, you’ll be well on the way to achieving a top result in selling your home.