The most important step to take when selling a house in Pittsburgh – or anywhere for that matter – is finding a real estate agent you feel comfortable with and trust. As with most professions, not every real estate agent is created equal. Some specialize in certain neighborhoods, or certain types of properties. Some are newer than others. If all of this seems intimidating, don’t worry! We’ll break down the process for you in this article, and you’ll be on your way to picking the best real estate agent in Pittsburgh (for you) in no time.
Related article: How to Sell a House in Pittsburgh Without an Agent
Interview Your Prospects to Find the Best Real Estate Agent in Pittsburgh
If you were going to remodel your kitchen, would you hire the first contractor you talk to? Probably not. You’d likely get estimates from 3 or more contractors. The same concept applies when picking a real estate agent. Make sure you talk to several before deciding which one you feel comfortable working with.
When interviewing different real estate agents, there are plenty of questions you can ask. For now, we’ll just focus on five key topics. Make sure you cover these when interviewing real estate agents in Pittsburgh.
Top Five Topics to Discuss with Your Pittsburgh Real Estate Agent
1. Recent Sales in Your Pittsburgh Neighborhood
Being familiar with your local real estate market is a trait your real estate agent must have. Pittsburgh is a city made up of 90 neighborhoods. Real estate agents often specialize in one or two different neighborhoods. Just because an agent sold a Lawrenceville house in 10 days doesn’t mean that same agent can sell a house in Shadyside in the same amount of time. If you live in Lawrenceville, this agent might be the right fit for you. It’s likely they have their finger on the pulse of the market, and already have a network of buyers who are interested in houses in that area of Pittsburgh. Ask your potential agent which areas of Pittsburgh they specialize in, and how many homes they have sold in that area in the past year.
2. Average Number of Days on Market
When you interview a real estate agent, ask them what the average Days on Market (DOM) is for their listings. A high average DOM can indicate that the agent’s network of buyers may not be that strong or that their ability to price houses competitively isn’t very accurate. This could be a particular red flag in Pittsburgh, given that we’re in a hot seller’s market right now. That said, make sure you factor this into your decision when picking a real estate agent.
3. Home Type
As we mentioned in the beginning of this article, agents often specialize in certain neighborhoods or certain types of homes. For example, some agents only have experience selling Single Family Homes (SFHs), while others have experience selling 15-unit apartment buildings. As you can imagine, it takes a different skillset to sell a $200,000 home than it does to sell a $2,000,000 apartment complex. Therefore, be sure to ask your agent if they have experience selling the type of property you own.
4. Asking Price
The asking price is the first thing buyers will see when looking at your home. Therefore, it’s critical to set the right asking price for your house. Setting it too high may exclude certain buyers from seeing it. Setting it too low could potentially leave money on the table. Use recent sales data from a reputable company like Zillow or Trulia to get an idea of what homes have sold for in your area. Use that information to avoid agents that are suggesting to list your house for an asking price that is unrealistic.
5. Suggested Repairs or Improvements
When selling your house, you should try to avoid spending a lot of money on improvements in the hopes of selling it for more money. Research shows that homeowners typically don’t get all of their renovation costs back when it comes time to sell a home. Keep this in mind when you are talking to a real estate agent who suggests making improvements to your home before selling. While this may mean a bigger commission for them, it will likely result in less money in your pocket.
Finding a real estate agent takes time, but picking your agent carefully will pay off in the end. This article is by no means a complete and exhaustive list, but if you interview multiple agents and ask them about the topics above, you will be well on your way to finding the best real estate agent in Pittsburgh who can sell your house fast.
If you need to sell your house even faster, we would love to make you a fair, all-cash offer.
We can make you a no-obligation offer in 24 hours or less and you can weigh that option against listing with a real estate agent. Just fill out the short form below to get started. Someone will contact you within 24 hours to learn more about your property and let you know whether or not we can help. There’s no pressure and no-obligation to sell. In other words, you have nothing to lose!