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Want to Invest in Real Estate?

How to Hire a Realtor

What's the Key to Locking in a Mortgage?

How to Improve Your Credit

Watch out for Mortgage Fraud

Need a Buyer-Broker?

Learn How to Best Insure Your Home and Save Money

Avoid Trouble on Your Kids Mortgage

Downward Direction for Down Payments

How to Hire a Contractor

Save Money by Cancelling Your Private Mortgage Insurance ("PMI")

Crunch the Numbers and Drop Your Private Mortgage Insurance ("PMI") Payments

Who's Watching your Deposit Money?

Remodeling Value: Your Best Investments

More Than One Way to Pay for Remodeling

File Your Income Tax Returns Early and Save Money

Types of Loans Available for the Self-Employed

Top Five Homeowner Tax Saving Ideas


The Seller Agent

4 Steps to Hiring a Seller's Agent

Welcome to Sales!
It�s a new ballgame.

Never thought you'd be in the home sales business, did you? Join the club. More homes are being sold than ever before, for lots of reasons. Pick yours: new job, job transfer, moving up to a second home, or moving on to a retirement community... the list goes on.

Why Worry?
It's Only Your Time and Money!

No matter what the circumstances, you want the experience to be smooth, relatively quick, and profitable. NOTHING is more important to your ultimate success than selecting the right broker. You need a real professional. Choose the wrong person, and you're doomed to fail or flounder along the way.

The Basics
Here are the four basic steps to keep in mind:

Step 1 � Interview Several Candidates

Don't hire the first person to send you a flyer boasting about selling a few homes in your neighborhood. Get referrals from friends, associates and neighbors. Be sure to interview several people from different agencies. Pay very close attention to their qualifications but stay attuned to their personality, too, is it a good match to yours?

Step 2 � Check their Track Record

Make sure the agent you hire has the experience, training and support you need. Be sure to ask:

  • Does the agent have a successful track record of assisting sellers in YOUR town or county?

  • How many years of experience?

  • How many homes sold? Don't be bamboozled by awards like "Top Producer," or "Million Dollar Circle." 

The bottom line is, how many sales transactions did the agent close last year?

Don't forget to ask if your agent advertises nationally on the Internet or real estate classifieds-the aggressive marketing plan always includes national exposure.

Step 3 � Ask About Support and Customer Service

Many top producing agents have assistants that handle various tasks related to marketing and the final sales transaction. It actually helps to have several people working for you, but make sure your agent personally handles the contract negotiations and closing.

How does you agent like to communicate, and how often? If you want updates every other day by phone or e-mail, then say so.

Step 4 � Ask About Their Ethical Background

You have a right-to-know as a consumer about the agent's ethical background. Make a call to the state board of Realtors(r). Find out if any complaints or violations exist on his or her record. Ask the agent if he or she has ever had a complaint from the local board or association of Realtors(r), or a lawsuit filed over a sales transaction. Finally, ask if the individual Realtor or agency has errors-and-omissions insurance.

Start Off on the Right Track
It will make all the difference.

Of course, there's more to the process of marketing and selling a home than picking the right seller's agent. But this hiring decision can MAKE or BREAK that critical debut when you first put your house on the market.

Who You End Up With Affects What You End Up With!

Follow these four steps and you'll start on the right track. Now, let's look at some pitfalls to avoid...

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