Refinancing to upgrade? Pick the right agent

Refinancing to upgrade? Pick the right agent

As a homeowner, there may well come a time when your existing property no longer suits your needs. Even if it's a gorgeous property and is close to transport links, a lack of space may lead to you investigating roomier homes. Perhaps space isn't an issue, but the kids are getting older and you want to relocate to an area that's got a better selection of local schools.

Whatever your reasons for packing up and moving on, it's important to follow the right steps when selling, as well as getting  your finances in check.

Choosing the right agent is incredibly important, as well as investigating what home loan interest rates are on offer for your next mortgage. When it comes to picking the right agent, we've got a few pointers.

What do the experts say?

The Real Estate Institute of Victoria (REIV) commented on the importance of obtaining the right agent for your selling needs on June 20.

The REIV explained that the key reasons people take out the services of a licensed agent is to get sound advice and the most favourable price on their property.

From the industry body's perspective, working with a licensed agent is essential, given that they are trained professionals. Being up to date with the latest movements in the property market and knowing which sales techniques are acceptable - and which are not - are invaluable skills.

The industry body also explained what training is required to earn specific titles in the industry.

"A licensed estate agent can own or manage an estate agency and conduct auctions, while an agent's representative is a employed by a licensed estate agent and may work in sales or property management," the REIV noted.

Furthermore, the industry representative explained that agents are experienced in a number of areas, from residential real estate to property management and commercial property. Some agents will focus on a niche area, becoming masters in their chosen field.

The REIV stated that the most important thing to bear in mind as a homeowner is to select a real estate agent who is licensed.

How do I pick a real estate agent?

Even if you've used a mortgage calculator, found a great interest rate and received loan pre-approval, your efforts could go to waste if you don't get the right agent on board to sell your existing property.

When looking for a real estate agent, treat the process like a job interview. Ask your preferred candidates plenty of questions and find out about their previous experience in your area.

There's no point getting an agent who's an inner-city commercial property specialist to sell your three-bedroom home in the suburbs. Think about what kind of property agents have sold before as well as the area they have worked in.

An agent who hasn't worked in your exact suburb but has extensive experience selling properties similar to yours in neighbouring areas could still have the right kind of experience to run a selling campaign for you. Alternatively, you might prefer to get an agent to sell your home who is an expert in your specific suburb. It's up to you who you pick; just be confident they can back up their talk with proof of their successes.

You want to be able to work with someone who is able to communicate with you easily. For many homeowners, real estate jargon can go in one ear and out the other. And it's no wonder; some of it is incredibly technical! Make sure the agent you select is an expert, but ensure they can explain what's going on in straightforward terms.

Image credit: Mark Moz

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