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    North of NYC North of NYC By Houlihan Lawrence By Houlihan Lawrence by

    The first day of spring was a washout in our area, but the beginning of the new season reminded me that many Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess County homeowners are getting ready to move and are preparing their home for a potential sale.

    If you’re a homeowner who has decided that now is the time to list your house for sale, finding the right Realtor® is the most effective way to get the best price for your property in the shortest amount of time. Here is a quick list of tips to consider when choosing a real estate agent to sell your home:

    • Referrals – Speak with friends and neighbors who have sold a home similar to your own. Ask your friends and family if they’ve had a positive experience hiring their Realtor ®. Ask them what made that individual the right person to sell their home. Get references.
    • Online Resources – Utilize the Internet to your advantage by researching various Realtor® candidates on their website. Check out their homepage and social media sites, i.e., Facebook and Linkedin to get additional detail about their skill levels and interests.
    • Local Expertise – Ask prospective agents how well they know your neighborhood and the town that you live in. They should be familiar with the current real estate market in your neighborhood and recent comparable sales.
    • Narrow Your Choices – Once you have two or three names based on positive feedback and your own research, you will need to find a mutual time to interview each candidate and find the one Realtor® that is best suited to work with you to sell your home. Whether an agent is new or a seasoned professional, make sure you’re comfortable with them and are confident that they will deliver the results you need to sell your home.
    • Professional Designations – Did you ever wonder what all those acronyms meant after a real estate agents name? They indicate that a Realtor® has undergone additional training to increase their skills or expertise in a particular aspect of real estate. For information on many of these professional designations, go to The National Association of Realtors® website.
    • Agent Network – One factor to consider when listing your home with a Realtor® is the company they work for. A larger firm will have the advantage of a wide network of sales professionals in force to help sell your home.
    • Brokerage – Ask what tools and assistance the brokerage firm they work for provides them to keep pace with today’s real estate market. Is there ongoing education and training available? Where will they showcase your listing on the Internet? Do they offer professional photographers and video? What reports would be available to help sell your home?
    • Educate Yourself – There are many more tips and suggestions available on the Internet. You won't regret the time spent researching what you need to be aware of before you hire a Realtor®.