Important Questions to Ask When Interviewing
a Real Estate Agent:
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE AGENT
1. How long have you been working full-time in real estate?
I have been selling real estate full-time for 23 years and have always been a full-time Realtor. My husband Jim O’Neill joined me 9 years ago and together we provide 2 for 1 full time service.
2. What degree of education and training have you attained? Have you taken time to increase your real estate knowledge? If so, what real estate designations do you hold?
I have a B.S. Degree in Management with a Concentration in Marketing from Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York. I have taken additional real estate related courses for over 20 years on various subjects from Law to Appraisal, and Antique Homes to New Construction. I am a licensed agent in both Connecticut and Massachusetts, as is Jim.
Designations I’ve held: Brokers License, Tenured Appraiser and a Graduate of the Realtors Institute (GRI). Jim and I also receive continual training through Buffini Systems (and have done so for 12 years) which is the largest and most successful real estate coaching company in North America. We continue to receive bi-weekly “one on one” coaching calls, monthly conference calls and attend various seminars around the country. Through the Buffini Systems website linking nearly 20,000 agents, many of whom we know personally from attending seminars and retreats, we are better able to connect clients to knowledgeable Realtors in states and areas in which we are not licensed to practice.
3. Do you have an assistant to help us if you and Jim are both busy or away?
Yes, we do have an assistant, Jenna Barrett, who is always willing to assist you and can reach us anytime, if an emergency should arise, or if we are unavailable.
4. How much money do you, personally invest to get my home sold? How will it be used?
We will personally invest whatever it takes to properly market your home for sale. We will be glad to discuss specifics with you. With our oversized signs, professionally installed, to the lock boxes, photos, feature sheets and Multiple Listing Services (M.L.S), we have already begun to make a substantial investment in your home. Added to that are printed flyers, mailings and various internet/website exposure plus weekly newspaper ads, just to name a few. The day the sign goes up, is the day we’ve made our initial financial commitment to sell your home. Of course a successful business person prefers to invest in things that provide a decent return. Therefore, we need to know first, if it makes sense for us to take on each investment.
Keep in mind, we only take 2 out of every 3 listings.
THAT’S WHY WE ARE 100% COMMITTED TO SELLING YOUR HOME!
5. Do you, personally, advertise your own listings to expose them to prospective buyers?
Yes, we personally advertise all our own listings each week in newspaper publications and the internet to expose your property to the widest variety of prospective buyers in the market place. Internet exposure includes enhanced listings on Realtor.com, KahanOneill.com and syndication to many other real estate websites.
6. How many transactions have you personally completed in the last twelve months?
Unlike the “boom” in the late 80’s and in 2004-2006 market, I have consistently maintained a sales volume of well over 7 million dollars each year and am one of the top 3-5 % of the agents, within the Hartford Board of Realtors (consisting of approximately 3500 agents in 63 towns) as well as within my own office. During my time with RE/MAX, I reached the Presidents Club, the Executive Club and both the 100% Club and 200% Club (the highest level of achievement recognized nationally- given to only the top 3% in the industry) ten times, as well as the Hall of Fame award for grossing over $35 million in sales production. I’ll gladly share my production over last 12 months upon request, since it’s always changing.
7. What percentage of your listings sold in the last twelve months? How close to asking price?
Over the last 20 years my turnover ratio is approximately 98% and in 2007 and 2008 my listings have sold within 99% of asking price. Remember, we do not take every listing. We will only take those listings we honestly feel we can sell.
8. What is the average “marketing time” for your listings: number of days on market vs. MLS time?
The average marketing time for my listings to sell, has consistently been much quicker than the average MLS time (by about 2/3rds), because of our marketing strategy. The average MLS marketing time in today’s market is currently around 270 days (this estimate includes listings that have expired from the market and have been re-listed a second or third time).
9. What is your personal business/marketing plan for selling my home?
- Develop a file on your property which will include:
- Information from the town hall (assessor’s card, legal description, plot plan etc.)
- An appointment sheet to log in all showings in order to provide feedback to our clients weekly
- A sheet for logging in when ads have run and in which publications
- A detailed feature sheet with a color photo of your home, for buyers to take during viewings
- A profile sheet from the Hartford Board- Multiple Listing Service
- As many as 20 photos to download to the Multiple Listing Service
- An in-house disclosure sheet- allowing Kahan O’Neill Realty to practice dual agency
- A sellers disclosure sheet, required by Connecticut law
- A lead paint disclosure form, for homes built before 1978
- A mold disclosure form
- A listing information sheet to track progress
- Fill out the Listing Profile sheet and submit to MLS within 24 hours
- Take color photos within 1-2 days and download up to 20 interior and exterior photos to MLS
- Submit detailed information and up to 20 photos to Realtor.com website and other websites
- Add your listing to our company website: Kahanoneill.com
- “Stage” your property” for the market, room by room, so it shows the best it possibly can (click
- Design a detailed feature sheet with photo of your home
- Make copy of disclosures to be left with feature sheets for buyers to review during a showing
- Put a lock box on your front door immediately
- Order sign, to be installed with post by a professional company within 3 days
- Write a variety of different ads to use with different photos
- Layout and run your ad in the next available publication
- Bring 12-15 feature sheets to your home to be displayed for buyers to pick up during showings
- Email flyer to other agents with details about your listing
- Make follow-up calls to agents after every showing to obtain buyer’s feedback
- Provide specific feed back on all showings, once received from buyer’s agents
- Maintain communication with you weekly
- Check the market weekly for new listings, deposits and sales to discuss with you how they affect your home’s value.
- Provide a detailed computerized Monthly Service Report to include activities performed plus the number of weekly hits on website, specific feedback from buyers, etc.
- Update you every 30 days with new listings, deposits and sales, and how they affect the marketability of your home. Continue monthly updates to discuss new market trends or any other factors which may affect your home’s value until your home is sold.
- Keep a Progress Report, both manually and in computerized format, once your home is under contract. This is imperative since it is the most critical time of your transaction. This report tracks every important item and deadline of your specific contract such as: termite, water, septic, radon, mold, asbestos and lead and home inspections, mortgage contingency dates, appraisals, deposit money, escrows, closing dates and times, attorneys names and contacts made to each party.
10. Will you provide me references of past customers and clients I would be able to call?
Certainly! References will gladly be provided upon request. We welcome you to call or contact any of them, if you’d like to discuss their experiences in working with us. Click on Testimonials.
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE OFFICE
1. Are all agents in your office full time? If not, how many part-time agents do you have?
Yes, all agents at Kahan O’Neill Realty work full-time. There are no part-time agents in our office.
2. What is the average “number of years experience” agents in your office have?
The “average” number of years experience at our office is approximately 15 years.
3. Do you personally get every incoming call on my home, or do calls rotate through the office to the “floor duty” agent (someone who answers phones and takes messages, like a secretary)?
What sets us apart is that each agent here gets all the incoming calls on all their listings. Whether from a sign, ad or internet call, each agent personally gets all the incoming calls and emails from websites on their properties. No one can possibly know your home better than the agent you listed it with. Remember, no one is more motivated to sell your home than the agents at Kahan O’Neill Realty either, since each listing agent here has made their own personal and financial investment in your home.
* For any additional questions you may have, feel free to call us anytime at (860) 643-6363 *