As a military family, you’re likely to buy and/or sell a home at some point during your time spent with the military. While both buying and selling are big financial decisions, selling is a huge responsibility that often needs a little more planning and attention.
With hidden costs, stress of perfecting your home to sell, searching for another home, and wondering if enough people are viewing your home, selling a home is one of the most stressful situations in life.
So, when it’s time to sell your investment, don’t entrust it to just any real estate agent.
When it’s time to find a realtor, ask these questions to know if they’re the right fit.
1. How long is our contract good for?
Read the contract, but have a discussion about how long you are under contract with them until you can jump ship if you just aren’t feeling the relationship.
2. Do you have a proposed contract I can review?
A good agent will have a contract with you and allow time for you to review. Don’t feel pressured to sign on the spot.
3. What costs am I responsible for?
Are all services included or will you have to pay extra for staging, photography, or special marketing like ads and open houses?
4. How many years have you had your real estate license, is it in good standing?
It’s easy to verify if your real estate agent has a license in good standing. You can Google “real estate license lookup (and the state you’re in)” to find out more details on your agent.
5. What percentage of your clients are buyers vs. sellers?’
Some agents specialize in being a buyer’s agent OR a seller’s agent. Some agents dabble equally in both. Which do you want?
6. What price range do you typically work in?
Is the price of your home in the range the agent typically works or are they going out of their comfort zone?
7. Describe the current market?
Have the agent give you their thoughts on the market you’ll be selling in. Hopefully the briefing will not only educate you on the current market conditions, but it will also give you a feel for how your agent is able to articulate their ideas.
8. How much do you charge?
What is the agent’s commission? Most agents ask for 6%, which is split 50/50 between the buyer and seller agents. Everything is negotiable.
9. What percentage of your work has involved VA loans?
If you’re selling in a heavy military market, it’s a good idea to find an agent who has experience with VA loans. The rules, timing, and even appraisals are a little different with a VA loan as compared to a conventional loan.
10. Can you walk me through the VA Appraisal process?
The VA Loan Appraisal process is different than that of a conventional loan. Does the agent understand the process? Do they have concerns about Tidewater?
11. Have you worked with military families before?
An agent doesn’t have to be a veteran or military spouse to be military friendly. However, if you are a service member or a military spouse, finding a real estate agent with experience working with military families is a plus. The agent will be more families with military jargon, powers of attorney, mail-out closings, and the general fast-paces tempo of military life. As you know, MilHousing Network requires its agents to to be familiar with military life (being a milspouse or veteran), and to work with a high number of military families, and VA loans. We can help you in this process.
12. Are you MRP certified?
It’s not a make or break, but The Military Relocation Professional certification shows that an agent has gone above and beyond to learn about working with current and former military service members.
13. What is your average “days on market” for the last 6 months?
This is another statistic that is a mix of the agent’s skills and talents along with the current conditions of the market. However, it’s still helpful to forecast what you might be in for.
14. Do you have a team? Will I work with them? How much face-time will I have with you?
It’s common for agents to work in teams. How much time will you actually get with the lead agent? A follow-up interview with any potential team members would help you see all sides of your agent’s team.
15. How will you market my home?
Which websites will your home be listed on? Will there be open houses? Glossy postcard mailers? Ads in magazines?
Selling a home is one of the most stressful situations in a person’s life. Don’t enlist the help of just anyone. Use these questions to see if your realtor is right for you.
If you’re looking for a realtor, connect with us so we can get you in touch with one of our network agents who understand your crazy military life.