Monthly Archives: February 2013

Choosing a Realtor®? 12 Questions to Ask.

So you’re planning on buying or selling your home and have decided to hire an agent to either list your home, or help you find your dream home. Great! The good news is, you don’t need to know everything about buying and selling real estate if you hire a real estate professional who does. But how do you go about choosing a good agent to work with? ImageWhat questions should you ask an agent you’re considering hiring? How do you know if they have the experience & expertise that you need? We’ve provided a few questions here from REALTOR Magazine to get you started when interviewing potential agents. This is by no means meant to be an extensive list, so don’t be afraid to add your own questions as you think of them. A good agent will be more than happy to answer all your questions and share with you their background and experience.

  1. How long have you been in residential real estate sales? Is it your full-time job? While experience is no guarantee of skill, real estate — like many other professions — is mostly learned on the job.
  2. What designations do you hold? Designations such as GRI and CRS®, which require that agents take additional, specialized real estate training, are held only by about one-quarter of real estate practitioners.
  3. How many homes did you and your real estate brokerage sell last year? By asking this question, you’ll get a good idea of how much experience the practitioner has.
  4. How many days did it take you to sell the average home? How did that compare to the overall market? The REALTOR® you interview should have these facts on hand, and be able to present market statistics from the local MLS to provide a comparison.
  5. How close to the initial asking prices of the homes you sold were the final sale prices? This is one indication of how skilled the REALTOR® is at pricing homes and marketing to suitable buyers. Of course, other factors also may be at play, including an exceptionally hot or cool real estate market.
  6. What types of specific marketing systems and approaches will you use to sell my home? You don’t want someone who’s going to put a For Sale sign in the yard and hope for the best. Look for someone who has aggressive and innovative approaches, and knows how to market your property competitively on the Internet. Buyers today want information fast, so it’s important that your REALTOR® is responsive.
  7. Will you represent me exclusively, or will you represent both the buyer and the seller in the transaction? While it’s usually legal to represent both parties in a transaction, it’s important to understand where the practitioner’s obligations lie. Your REALTOR® should explain his or her agency relationship to you and describe the rights of each party.
  8. Can you recommend service providers who can help me obtain a mortgage, make home repairs, and help with other things I need done? Because REALTORS® are immersed in the industry, they’re wonderful resources as you seek lenders, home improvement companies, and other home service providers. Practitioners should generally recommend more than one provider and let you know if they have any special relationship with or receive compensation from any of the providers.
  9. What type of support and supervision does your brokerage office provide to you? Having resources such as in-house support staff, access to a real estate attorney, and assistance with technology can help an agent sell your home.
  10. What’s your business philosophy? While there’s no right answer to this question, the response will help you assess what’s important to the agent and determine how closely the agent’s goals and business emphasis mesh with your own.
  11. How will you keep me informed about the progress of my transaction? How frequently? Again, this is not a question with a correct answer, but how you judge the response will reflect your own desires. Do you want updates twice a week or do you prefer not to be bothered unless there’s a hot prospect? Do you prefer phone, e-mail, or a personal visit?
  12. Could you please give me the names and phone numbers of your three most recent clients? Ask recent clients if they would work with this REALTOR® again. Find out whether they were pleased with the communication style, follow-up, and work ethic of the REALTOR®.

More from REALTOR magazine

Meet our newest team member!

Say hello to Denise Schroeder, the newest addition to the Mallett Integrity Team! A great addition Denise_smallto the team, Denise offers over 20 years of experience in multiple facets of real estate including: land development, site construction, and ranch management. Through these experiences, she has become familiar with the processes of selling and purchasing land and the assets that transfer. Raised outside of Houston, Denise is a “Native Texan” proud to call the Hill Country “home” for her and her family. Denise holds a position on the Dripping Springs Youth Association Football Board and is involved with Dripping Springs Elementary & Middle School PTA.  If you’re looking to buy home in the Texas Hill Country contact Denise today!

3 Reasons Why it’s a Great Time to Sell Your Home

Here’s the short version of why it’s a great time to list your home in the Austin area right NOW:

1. Inventory is down – At first this may sound like a bad thing, however, for you, the home seller, this means buyers are more limited in their selection, making your home potentially more desirable than when inventory is high.

2. Median Home Prices are up – In January 2013 we have seen an increase of about 10% in median home sales prices compared to 2012 (see chart below). That means that you may be able to get more for your home than you were able to one year ago. Recent statistics also show that sellers are also getting about 95% of their asking price – now that is good news!

3.  Closed sales are UP and Days on the Market are Down – MLS statistics are showing a 23% increase in closed home sales in the Austin area combined with a 22% decrease in the number of days a home is on the market until sale. So,if you need to sell your home quickly, now is the time!

Although we don’t have a crystal ball to predict your particular situation, we’d love the opportunity to work with you to get your home SOLD. If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home this year, let’s talk! Contact us at 512-829-2062 today!

We’ve also included all the most recent charts here below so you can see for yourself what the market is doing in the Austin area right now.

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Keller Williams #1 in closed volume for 2012

According to the Austin Board of Realtors, Keller Williams closed volume in Austin Texas dominated the competition in 2012. The Southwest Austin Market Center (the market center our team is part of) closed $1,121,481,375 worth of real estate transactions last year. When combined with the other Keller Williams Market Centers in Austin, our offices totaled over 2 Billion in Real Estate sales! We’re even more excited because 2013 is also beginning with some incredible momentum.  Take a look at the chart below to see how we compared in 2012 to other national real estate firms.

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Keller Williams – One of the top 10 best places to work in the U.S.!

Keller Williams was ranked #9 in a recent Workplace Dynamics 150 best workplaces survey, and was the only national real estate franchise to make the list! No wonder we love working here! 🙂

Click here for the full list. For more info on the study click here.