People are bombarded by Real Estate opinions these days. Even your dentist and car mechanic are happy to offer their thoughts on selling your home. You’ll rarely see a Real Estate agent offer advice on cavities or fuel injection, but these days everyone seems to think they are real estate gurus. Knowing whose advice to trust is harder than it has ever been. That makes choosing your real estate professional harder than ever too.  
Only about 5% of agents that launch a Real Estate business end up being able to make a career out of it. That means that at any one time you have a 1 in 20 chance of picking an experienced and savvy agent to sell your home. Many people just hire someone familiar or someone they met at the gym. It’s like choosing your spouse based on how close they live to you. Familiarity shouldn’t be a factor in choosing the best agent.  
A seller should always seek out experience, market knowledge, personality fit, and superior negotiating skill in the agent they hire. It’s OK to ask for references and subject the agent to an interview process.
Always ask about the agent’s background. There are many good agents out there, but an agent with a few hundred transactions under their belt will do a better job for you.  
Good agents know what is happening in the trenches of real estate. What are other local agents saying about your neighborhood and the market overall? What are current inventory levels? Supply and Demand are the most important factors in determining your property’s value.  
Always hire a good negotiator.  Weak negotiators let your money evaporate like water on a hot August sidewalk. A good negotiator does not have to be tough or offensive. The best negotiators can get what they want with no friction at all.  
Make sure your agent is a fit for you. Hire someone you will trust and listen to. Without trust you will second guess every decision you have to make.  
The agent you hire is the single biggest factor in how smooth your transaction will be and how much money you will make. Select carefully and interview to determine which agent will give you the best outcome. Good agents appreciate being interviewed. It shows that the client wants to hire the best person to guide them through one of the largest financial transactions of their life.   


Steve Mallett is the Team Leader and owner of The Mallett Integrity Team (MIT).  MIT is an award winning top team in the Austin area.  Steve can be reached at 512-627-7018.