5 Criteria to Evaluate a Real Estate Agent


To say the housing market is hot across many areas of the country can feel like a major understatement. All you have to do is look at the hot markets of Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Victoria, and pockets in Alberta and it’s clear that the housing market is on a tear. With that said it’s easy for sellers to make the assumption that all they have to do is plunk a “for sale” sign on their lawn and the house will basically sell itself. While that can happen from time to time, typically there is more to it than just putting up a sign.

One of the best ways to go about selling your home whether it be in a hot or a cold market is to enlist the help of a real estate agent. Real estate agents bring with them a network of contacts, all kinds of helpful information and advice, and they understand how to negotiate a deal. Of course not all agents are the same, and some will just work better with your needs, expectations, and your personality.

To help you find the right real estate agent to sell your home, here are five things to look for.

1. Get Recommendations from Friends and Family

A great place to start is talking with friends and family who have recently sold their home and ask who they used. Ask what their experience was like and if they would recommend the agent they used. Be sure to ask for details whether it is pros or cons they have to tell you about.

If you don’t know anyone who has recently sold a house, take a drive through your neighbourhood and take note of the agents who have multiple listings. You can then do a little search online to find out more about them.

2. How Does the Agent Advertise their Listings?

A big part of selling your house is making sure it is being seen by the right kinds of buyers. You’ll want to ask your agent how they advertise their listings, if they have a website, what kind of marketing they will do on your behalf, and if they have any partnership deals with other agents. The more specifics the agent can give you about how they plan to sell your home, the more assured you will likely feel. Some real estate agents may use real estate newsletters or email marketing to convey their information, so make sure you properly explore all of the insights available.

3. Take a Look at the Listings the Agent Currently Has

Another telling sign is to look at the listings the agent currently has. Are they similar homes to yours? Are they in the same neighbourhood/town? The agent may even specialize in particular types of listings, which you will want to be aware of. You also want to pay attention to how many listings they have. If they have a lot then it could be a sign that they have a good reputation in the industry, and they have no problem attracting clients.

4. What Advice Do They Have For You?

Have the agent come over to your house and do a walk through, then get their feedback. Do they have any advice you should follow, what is the price range they suggest listing at, are there any red flags they see? These answers will help determine if you are on the same page as the agent.

5. What is the Fee They Charge?

You also want to ask about their fee, as you don’t want to have any surprises when the house closes.

By taking these tips into consideration while searching for a real estate agent you will be sure to find one that works with your specific needs and expectations, and will help you sell your house for top dollar.