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Ten Questions You Should Absolutely, Positively Get Truthfully Answered Before You Sell Any Property Part One April 27th, 2017 | Posted in General Real Estate, Other Interests, Real Estate

This is a “primer” for your seller clients as they learn more about the selling process.  Again, include this under the seller section of your website.

To break it up, we’re splitting this series into two blogs so be sure to come back tomorrow for the rest of it!


Not all real estate agents are the same.  If you decide to seek the help of an agent when selling or buying your home, you need the right information before you can make a decision to sign a listing agreement.  Did you know that approximately 6% of all real estate agents do 80% of the business?

Picking the right agent is one of those critical issues that can cost or save you thousands of dollars.  There are very specific questions that you should be asking to ensure that you get the best representation for your needs.  Many agents would prefer that you do not ask these questions, because the knowledge you will gain from their honest answers will give you a very good idea of what outcome you can expect from using this agent.  Let us face it – in real estate, as in life – not all things are created equal.

Hiring a real estate agent is like any hiring process – with you on the boss’ side of the desk.  It is critical that you make the right decision about who will handle what is maybe one of the single largest financial investments you will ever make.  You should ask your agents the following questions:

  1. Do you make it easy for buyers to get information about my home and how do they get this information?

In addition to using the Multiple Listing Service, you may be surprised to know that the other two marketing tools that agents use to sell homes (open houses and big company ads) are actually not very effective at all.  In fact, according the National Association of REALTORS®, less than 3% of people purchase their home as a result of calling on a company ad, and less than 1% of homes are sold at an open house.

How do most homes in Long Beach sell?  As I said earlier – the Multiple Listing Service.  When an agent puts a home on the MLS, every agent from every company has access to show and sell that home.  By the way, there are 3400 REALTORS® in Long Beach, California and over 25,000 listings.  So, how do you make it stand out?

Prospects calling for information on your home probably value their time as much as you do.  The last thing they want to be subjected to is either a game of telephone tag with an agent or an unwanted sales pitch.  Make sure the ad your agent places for your home is attached to a twenty-four hour pre-recorded hotline with a specific ID# for your home which gives buyers and agents access to detailed information about your property day or night, seven days a week.

Also, make your prospective agent show you his/her website with all their listings.  Ask to see a virtual tour a home.  Request information from the site on a particular listing and see how long it takes for that agent to get in touch with you.  Three hours is the goal!  We have found that six times as many buyers go the web or free phone information systems for information on your home.

What is the search engine strategy?  Remember, the more buyers you have looking at your home the better, because it sets up an auction-like atmosphere that puts you in the driver’s seat.  Also, direct mail, databasing buyer needs, list-to-sell ratios, days on market, individual agent production, and over thirty other items determine the success of a marketing program.  Sanford Systems literally wrote the book on marketing!

  1. What is your commission and why are you worth it?

Do not ever agree to any commission unless you are shown exactly how this agent earns it.  Fact: real estate commissions are NOT set by law!  Your new agent should be able to show you how to make money, not cost you money.  Your net proceeds should be increased by an agent.  At Sanford Systems, we have over ten ways to increase your net proceeds at sale.

  1. Do you have an assistant to help you? Tell me about your team.

Most agents work by themselves without any support making it difficult for them to provide you with a consistently superior level of service.  The job of real estate has many and varied parts to it.  Just as you would not expect a doctor or lawyer to reorganize the files or deliver documents, so your real estate agent should not be spending their time on simple, but time-consuming tasks that could be delegated.  If the agent does not have an assistant or team members to cover each aspect of your transaction, you should ask yourself how much time they really have to market and get your home sold.

Note: An assistant is much different than the company receptionist.  The company receptionist works for ALL agents in the office, but an assistant only works for one agent and could be a licensed real estate professional.  Always get a team to achieve your goals. 

  1. Specifically, how do you attract buyers?

The agent should be able to explain, step-by-step, how they attract buyers and show you evidence.  If they cannot, hire another agent!  Do not hire any agent who tells you their reputation will somehow attract buyers.  Make them prove it!  For instance, here at Sanford Systems, we have over eighteen methods to attract buyers.  We even have a buyer’s club for motivated buyers to join!

  1. What has been sold in my area?

Agents should bring you a list of comparable sales in your area.  It should include expireds, cancelleds, and pendings.  They should be scientifically compared by square footage, amenities, and emotional aspects with a plus and minus system just like an appraiser.  Appraisers call Walter Sanford every day to get his take on real values.

We’ll pick up with the rest of the list tomorrow so be sure to check back!


Lead generation is what builds your business and keeps your pipeline full, no matter what the market says!  Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter is a hefty book full of detailed and complete prospecting systems, and it includes the data CD (digital copy).  This is also a great manual for an assistant.

Call 800.792.5837 and ask for the $50 blog special on Grow Your Leads: Just Add Wa(l)ter.  Check out the content details here:


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