7 Questions You Should Ask a Realtor Before Hiring Them - Rego Realty



With home prices having risen dramatically in Southwestern Ontario over the past year, the costs of not working with the best Realtor for your needs are amplified. 

Today, inexperience, a strategy that’s incongruent with your goals, or a lack of responsiveness on the part of your real estate professional will cost you more time, money, and opportunities than ever.

Just as you’d seek an optometrist’s help for vision problems, you’ll want to work with a Realtor whose expertise is aligned with your goals and who is, of course, on their game.


Putting On Your HR Pants


There are a lot of great Realtors out there and you’ll no doubt have agent family and friends vying for your business.

And while it may be tempting to go with who you know, or pick the first Realtor you speak with, you’ll want to be methodical, explore your options, and, ultimately, choose the professional most likely to deliver success based on substance.

(We’re talking about a 500k, 600k, 700k, or possibly $1 million+ transaction, after all!)

While Uncle Terry may end up being the right fit, you’ll want to make sure you’ve spoken with a few agents and asked the right questions before making your decision.

Here are some questions and criteria that will help you choose the best Realtor for your needs.


1. How many homes do you sell a year?

Notice that this is a much different question than “How many years have you been in real estate?”

Even if a Realtor has ten years of experience in the industry, that doesn’t mean they’re active. On the flip side, you could speak with a newer agent who has only been in the industry for two years but has already sold 60 or 70 homes. 

Sales volume speaks, well, volumes about a Realtor’s experience, conditioning (rusty vs. ready for action), and commitment to their craft.

Considering that the vast majority of agents sell only four homes or less each year, this is a question you need to ask.


2. What kind of homes do you specialize in?

You’ll no doubt find many Realtors who sell residential resale homes: the most common property type out there.

But, even within this category, there are agents who specialize in condos, luxury homes, income properties, cottages, etc. All of these require their own expertise and approach.

If you’re purchasing an income property, for example, you likely don’t want to work with an agent who doesn’t routinely work with investors or hasn’t invested themselves. You’re just not going to get the same insights.

And, if you’re looking to purchase a new construction home, you’ll absolutely want to work with a Realtor who is an expert in the home building process. It’s a beast of its own.

Any way you slice it, you need to know their level of specialization and if their expertise aligns with your needs.


3. What locations/areas do you work in the most?

Location, location, location!

It matters to you and virtually every buyer and seller, but it also matters that your Realtor is dialed into the neighbourhoods in which you’re buying or selling. 

Local experts know the best neighbourhoods, areas to perhaps avoid, growth zones, schools, attractions, and so much more. 

And, at offer time, the kind of insights you’ll get from someone who makes and takes offers in that neighborhood day in and day out will be MUCH different than those from someone who goes in cold and relies solely on comparable sales data for the area. 


4. How many team members do you have?

If you liked the answers you got to the first three questions, you’ve probably found yourself a solid Realtor for your needs. But, the busier they are, the less time they’ll have. If they’re bogged down with administrative and marketing tasks, your purchase or sale could be impacted.

Understanding this, you’ll want to make sure your Realtor has a support system in place that will handle day-to-day tasks and enable them to stay focused on your transaction. 


5. How much will you invest to market my home?

At the end of the day, as a seller, you’re paying your Realtor to sell your home quickly and get top dollar. The commission you pay isn’t just for their expertise and effort; it’s to help them expertly market your property.

Naturally, you’ll want to understand how your investment will be applied to your success. 

A Realtor who invests in your listing will be able to speak to paid advertising, staging, multimedia, etc., whereas those who do not likely won’t have as much to say.

This question is directly related to your success and likely to create a clear contrast between agents. It’s worth asking.


6. What’s your negotiations plan?

In hockey, you don’t typically put your rookies on the ice in the last minute when defending a one-goal lead. In most cases, you’d put out experienced players who’ve thrived in high-pressure situations. 

The same goes when negotiating your home purchase or sale. With multiple offers possible, you’ll want a Realtor who’s been there, done that, can tell some great stories about their experiences, and, of course, clearly outline their methodology for making, taking, and negotiating offers.


7. Can you provide me with references?

Let’s be real: if you’re calling a Realtor’s references, you’ve probably decided to hire the Realtor.

Getting more real: we all know a Realtor isn’t going to provide you with anything other than glowing recommendations.

This exercise is not so much about making a hiring decision as it is about getting the most out of your engagement with the Realtor.

Ask references about their results, what they liked about their experience and their recommendations for how to work best with your new Realtor.


Done is Better Than Perfect

Don’t worry about the need to interview 20+ Realtors and ask every question perfectly.

The point of this exercise is to understand the relationship between “Realtor fit” and your success, be proactive, have conversations, and ask mindful questions that help you understand contrasts in service levels.

Even if you only speak with three Realtors who are known to focus on your specific areas of need and ask these basic questions, you’ll not only be set up for better results, you’ll feel more confident moving forward.



If you would like to chat with us about your real estate needs, we’re here to help. Contact us below.