How Long Have You Sold Houses In This Area?

How many times have you checked your voice mail and heard the following words: "Hi there. I just sold a home in your area, and I'd like to speak to you."

No, this is not just some greedy realtor trying to push his or her luck. Rather, it's a man or woman making a very smart business move. A realtor who has sold a home in an area becomes a well of specialized knowledge valuable to all other potential sellers in that area, and he or she hopes that other potential sellers will recognize that, too.

When you're interviewing a prospective realtor, he or she will no doubt try to impress you with lists of expensive sales they've made. But slow down and ask yourself, how much of this information is useful to you? Good for him or her if he managed to sell five million-dollar downtown lofts in one week, but how will that help you sell your midtown starter home? Similarly, how will the top seller in suburbia benefit the sale of your posh lakeside mansion? It's not just the realtor's overall track record that counts: it's his or her track record in your area that matters the most.

Importance Of Knowing The Area

When a realtor sells homes in a specific area, he or she learns a lot about the kinds of people who buy homes in that neighbourhood. Are they families? Singles? Young couples? Old couples? Are they from a particular socioeconomic group? Is there any ethic group particularly partial to that area? All this information will help your realtor zero in on potential buyers for your home.

If someone has been selling homes in your area for several years, he or she has even more knowledge about the neighbourhood. What are the trends in that area? What is the resale potential of your house? Is the area safe for raising children? Comfortable to retire in? These are questions prospective buyers for your home will likely ask your realtor. You want your realtor to know his or her stuff. Remember, more homes sold= more knowledge. That's why you want your realtor to know your area like the back of his or her hand.