While interviewing multiple real estate agents to find an agent to sell your home, you should never tell those agents anything you wouldn’t want the buyer to know. Why? Because you’ll only be hiring one agent and that’s the only agent that must protect your secrets. The other agents may have buyers waiting to make you an offer and since they represent the buyer’s interests, it’s their job to tell that buyer everything you told that agent if they’re interested in buying your house. Imagine trying to negotiate with a buyer that already knows your bottom line and desperation to sell before he ever sets foot in your house.
Things not to reveal during a real estate agent interview:
- The lowest price you would take
- Your financial situation if it’s really bad
- How desperate you are to sell
- And anything else you wouldn’t want the buyer to know
These are things that an agent doesn’t need to know until you hire them. If you are having financial problems, you may want to ask about short sales, but I wouldn’t reveal anything about my particular situation. Once you sign a listing agreement with an agent, that’s when it’s time to tell that agent everything in intimate detail. That’s the time to confess, but not before documents are signed.
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Mr Petrey, this is certainly good advice; unfortunately I found this article 3 weeks after hiring an agent (and probably telling her too much) Oh well…at least I know how to think it through the next time, if we have to find another agent soon to get the short sale done.
Not to worry, you can tell your deepest darkest house secrets to the agent that you hire. Just keep a tight lip on competing agents that you interview and especially the ones that show their buyers the house. Beware. Good agents are subtle when they dig. It’s amazing what info I can get just by asking a few questions and following up with a few others. Do some digging on your own and ask your neighbors if they were approached by someone interested in your home. I love talking with the neighbors. They are a gushing fountain of knowledge. More than likely, anyone who took the time to approach a neighbor for info is a serious buyer interested in your home.
Great advice. You are so right, the neighbors can almost tell the whole story.
Better yet, if you luck into a gossip, you get to hear about the house, the owners and the past three years of scandal revolving around all of it.