Listing with a Neighborhood Specialist?

There is absolutely no benefit to listing your home with a neighborhood specialist.   What the heck is a neighborhood specialist anyway?  Is this an agent that lives in the neighborhood or do they simply send postcards to the community?  Maybe it’s an agent that has sold several homes in the neighborhood and claims to know more about the area than anyone else.  In any case, I want to look at what a neighborhood specialist might mean to you in your real estate transaction as a seller.

First let’s look the attributes of an effective agent.  

  • An understanding of the real estate market trends and how they effect the price of your homes.  An effective agent will know how to select the right comparable homes, how to make adjustments based on contributing features and the current trends in the market.  They will be able to confidently guide you through the pricing process.
  • Demonstrate the financial benefits of pre-list preparations that will encourage buyers to bring higher offers.  Good listing agents are hired for their expertise.  This can be pointless if the agent isn’t skilled enough to show the benefits in a way that the seller sees the advantages and follows the agents advise.
  • A substantial and effective marketing plan to expose your home in a way that will generate the highest net income for their client.  This plan is multi-faceted with internet, point of purchase strategies, print media and connections with agents and buyers.
  • The practical experience to guide you through a transaction with options and likely potential outcomes to issues as they arise.  Every transaction is different and your agent must be able to address any issue that comes up.  Their guidance and your decisions could earn you or cost you thousands.
  • An understanding of the purchase agreements presented to you from the buyer’s agents.  There are definite strategies and safeguards your agent must be aware of in dealing with the purchase agreement.  Sellers and Buyers sometimes have conflicting interests on items in the agreement and the agent must address these with their client.

Now, let’s see how buyers most often find homes.

  • Buyers find homes online with search engines such as, Zillow, Redfin which are all fed information from the local real estate multiple listing service (NWMLS).  All listings from all companies and agents MUST be in the system pay huge fines.  No neighborhood specialist needed!
  • Buyers drive through neighborhoods and call the listing agent’s number on the for sale sign.  Statistically, there is a 10% chance that the agent will sell their own listing and a small chance that the buyer will even buy the home they called about.  No neighborhood specialist needed!
  • Friends tell buyers about homes in their neighborhood and invite them over to see.  No neighborhood specialist needed!

An experienced knowledgeable listing agent with an effective marketing plan and strong negotiating skills is always the best choice to list your home.  They might live in the neighborhood or in the next county … it just doesn’t matter!

So, how do you select the right agent?

  • Interview a couple agents.  It’s good to get a couple different viewpoints on strategies and price.  You can always share ideas you learned with the agent that you choose to work with. Remember, hire the agent that you trust to get the job done.  Your decision is based on; experience, understanding, effectiveness, marketing plan and negotiation skills.
  • Do not select the agent because of a high list price, lower commission, or that they are a neighborhood specialist.  But, if the best agent can prove, not just suggest, the highest listing price, offer their services at a lower commission and claim to be a neighborhood specialist … more power to you.

Tom Perry has more than 20 years of full time real estate experience with sellers and buyers.  His Seller and Buyer Systems are pro-active and effective and can be seen on his website  Contact Tom today 206-713-2538 to schedule an appointment.

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