When home buyers and home sellers in Westchester choose an agent, they often wind up taking a leap of faith – and dive in with the first person that seems reasonably suitable. With the sheer number of agents in the county (as well as in other parts of the country) this seems almost baffling. Why? With so many choices, why do buyers and sellers pick the same small group of agents over and over again. Some of these top producers are truly terrific, but there are enough bad apples in that pile to leave most sane real estate watchers scratching their heads.
But the answer probably has something to do with the fact that there are TOO many choices and at some point they the buyer or seller just needs to “pick someone” – and it can just be anyone with a “name” or someone who is blowing their own horn loud enough – claiming to be #1!
The fact that many agents and brokerages to be #1 only adds to the confusion. The question that buyers and sellers need to ask when an agent or brokerage claims to be #1 is “#1 in WHAT?”
Some claim to be #1 in listings in a given area. That’s great – but what percentage of these listings actually sold? An agent that holds many listings and doesn’t have an effective team may be spread too thin. That wonderful load of listings may hide the carnage of many expired listings.
Some claim to be #1 in sales. Sales where? How big an area? Do they know the area you are looking in well enough? Are their clients satisfied with the terms of these sales?
Some claim to be the #1 selling agent. But then you find they combined the sales of over 30 years into that claim.
The difficulty we have here is that there are many ways to be #1. I’m sure if I thought about it, I would be #1 in many, many things – many of them totally irrelevant to the topic at hand – serving my clients. This is why I’m always a bit suspicious of anyone claiming to be “#1” or a “top producer”. The difficulty for buyers and sellers is that few know enough about real estate to parse these claims effectively. So they “settle” on a known name or a name that they have seen around town.
In future posts, I will give potential home buyers and sellers some guidelines to look for when choosing an agent. In the meantime, remember that that the person you are selecting is advising you with what is probably the biggest single financial transaction that you will ever maker. So be careful when picking an agent out of thin air because they claim to be #1 for something you may not have a full understanding of.
© 2012 Ruthmarie G. Hicks – https://thewestchesterview.com – All rights reserved.
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