All things real estate: Interviewing your Broker to sell your home, condo, town home, coop or commercial property


So now you have decided to finally consider selling your property and now you have to decide how to approach this most arduous, complicated and nerve-racking process.

Do you do this on your own (For Sale by Owner/FSBO) or hire a knowledgeable professional who has years of experience in all facets of the residential and commercial real estate business. So how do you start, you say to yourself?

Then you ask yourself, should I hire someone I know, a good friend or someone my friend knows and recommends? That’s a possible route, but now step back and think about it. Recommendations can be an excellent source to pursue. However, the overall knowledge of that individual should come into play and who best to check out that most important ingredient, is many times an impartial stranger, but one who has had direct contact in the past who has dealt with that broker in a sale or purchase of a property.

I am surely not saying that friends and associates won’t necessarily have your back and recommend someone that is not a true professional, but my motto is, “you’re only as good as your last deal.”

The exception to that is the testimonials and reviews that an expert real estate broker receives from past sellers, purchasers, investors, renters and lessees of residential and commercial properties who have had the first-hand experience on a one on one basis, in dealing with that broker before, during and after the sale!

From my research, testimonials and reviews over the short and long run are the lifeblood of a professional, regardless of the industry that they are employed or in business within. Of course, your friends, family members, and business associates can be a source of recommendations for whom to use as well as future business.

But sometimes relying on friends and business associates for recommendations can turn into a disaster hearing many stories from clients and purchasers in how difficult and stressful it was. I am quite sure that you would rather keep your friendships and close relationships than lose them, especially when your sale or purchase is probably the most expensive commodity that one purchases in their lifetime.

Making sure that the person you hire or are working with, guides you through the process from beginning to the closing table, by showing, advising and consulting you through their concerted efforts, disciplined actions and the sacrifice of their valuable time! This process takes some serious knowledge, expertise and time tested trial and error to perfect and mold one’s way to do business and handle their clientele.

Many who try to travel this path don’t always receive the proper training and guidance from whoever is educating them whether it is their broker or outside groups or individual mentors.

Many don’t prove they’re worthy or gain the proper information due to lack of business experience, not sure of the correct way to go, confusion as to what to learn, laziness, wrong attitude, dedication and most crucial, their motivation and passion to be in the real estate business. For these reasons I believe, this is a major contributing factor in the dropout rate of agents being excessively high and would be lower if those factors were addressed, minimized and a solution was found.

More important, there are those who have this agenda to pick the shortest path to get their commission check without really knowing what to do from start to finish in having the necessary tools and expert knowledge to provide what that seller, investor, buyer, and even renter and lessee are so desperately looking for to enable their sale or search to have a positive outcome.

I have seen many within our industry trying to sell real estate instead of consulting their clientele. Advocates and those that you have done business with who verbally expound the virtues of how good you were are very important and a great way to gain future referrals. But having something in writing as a testimonial and review of services rendered, is one of the most powerful tools to be able to utilize as proof of how good you are in the transaction.

So the reaction and rating from clients, purchasers or renters and how they felt about the agent’s performance and the services provided if exemplary and top-notch would go a long way if put in a review or testimonial.

Unfortunately, future clients will most likely not know your personal friends, business associates or any of your advocates, so having reviews and testimonials posted in the proper places, allows those that don’t know you to have a clear picture painted of you and your business and truly your essence, what you represent and who you are as a realtor.

I believe the longer the track record and length in business and the more positive comments, the more successful you will become and the more you will earn in real estate. Anyone can take a licensing class and pass the New York State exam, but those basic preliminary tests don’t teach or closely prepare you for the real test of the business in how to consult your clients negotiations, keeping within the state Department of State rules and regulations, as well as our local Multiple Listing Service rules and regulations too, creating a workable business plan, learning technology, knowledge of construction, heating, electrical and so many other facets of the business that the typical agent doesn’t know about or even understand.

Consumers today, and especially the millennial crowd, demand and expect those in our business to be the most knowledgeable and experienced about all the aspects of our industry and all those things necessary to guide them from the start of showing property, to advising and consulting them (and not selling them vanilla if they need and want to purchase chocolate) and assist them with paperwork, suggestions for improvements of their prospective purchase and so much more to go through the process in as smooth a fashion with the least amount of stress and hassles possible.

For many, it is an extremely challenging chore, but it must be learned, absorbed and applied to truly become a successful Realtor. So when you are ready to sell, and begin the process of interviewing, don’t just get so impressed with a large company or all those million-dollar producers, because I have a secret, with prices at all-time highs, most of us are million-dollar producers, even if we have sold as little as one place.

Get impressed with those that have the greatest knowledge, expertise, credibility, straightforwardness, reliability, and consistency, follow up and above average reviews and testimonials to back up how good they are as being an absolute requirement and necessity in Real Estate business today.

Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave. Suite 180 in Great Neck. He has earned designations as a Graduate of the Realtor Institute and also as a Certified International Property Specialist. He can be reached by cell: (516) 647-4289 or by email: Phil@TurnKeyRealEstate.Com to answer any of your questions or concerns.


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