You already know the smart way to sell your home is through a real estate professional, but you may not realize how much your agent really does for you.

A real estate practitioner is licensed and regulated by the state to sell real estate, but service levels are far from standard. Most practitioners offer full service, but what does that really mean?

It means you should have an agent’s most professional advice and services – from pricing your home to preparing your home for market, to finding the right buyer, to shepherding the transaction to a smooth closing.

A great agent has a wealth of data and personal experience to share with you about local real estate market conditions, comparable homes on the market, and current lending and appraisal requirements. Her knowledge and experience will help you develop a pricing and marketing strategy that will bring about the quickest sale for the highest amount and best terms possible.

A great agent will help you prepare your home for sale in a critical marketplace. He will offer staging, cleaning and repair suggestions, as well as help you understand what buyers are looking for in today’s market.

A great agent will market your home on the MLS, third-party sites and on signs, flyers, blogs and other media. But don’t be surprised if your first showings come from your agent’s community of contacts such as previous clients, current buyers and other personal and professional contacts.

A great agent will qualify buyers to make certain they’re serious and financially able to buy your home before letting them into your home. Your agent can help you evaluate and negotiate offers of purchase, and write counter-offers with a sales price and terms as likely to meet your goals as possible.

Murphy’s Law was written for closings. Your home can fail to meet the buyer’s appraisal price, or the buyer’s inspection may reveal a water leak. Your agent knows how to react defensively and help you solve any problem that comes up. Your agent also takes preventative and curative measures to keep lenders, closing agents, contractors, and you on task. Her goal is to get you safely to closing.

A great agent’s job isn’t finished when you turn over the keys. He can help you find and buy your next home, providing the same level of service to you when you become the buyer. Your agent can keep you alerted to good housing investments, second homes or homes for your children.

For great agents, professionalism is about building a relationship that lasts a lifetime, from helping you buy your first home, to helping you sell your home and move up, to downsizing when you become an empty nester.

The only way to do that is to give you the results you want.

Written by Blanche Evans

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