February 18, 2020

Choosing an agent is about more than valuation

We’d all like to think our property would command the highest price possible when it comes time to sell. But when choosing an agent, the highest valuation isn’t necessarily the key feature you should be basing your decision on.

Instead, you need to weigh the pros and cons of all the agents you are deciding between, ascertaining which agent is truly working in your best interests.

Here’s why choosing an agent is about so much more than the valuation of your property.

How agents arrive at valuations

Any agent worth their salt will value your property based on a number of factors. These include:

  • Market data
  • Recent sales of similar properties
  • The current market demand for similar properties
  • Time on market for properties in your area
  • General market conditions like auction clearance rates, interest rates, property volumes, and more.

But it’s really important you understand exactly the methodology they use.

In a bid to gain a listing, there’s a chance some will set a high price point, knowing that’s what the seller wants to hear.

Now don’t get us wrong, a high price point is indeed something you should consider, but it should be weighed against other factors as well.

Track record

As the saying goes, a quality agent is only as good as their proven track record, and this includes both the sales they achieve and the relationship they have forged with the parties involved.

A great agent’s reputation will precede them. These are the professionals who people take time to write testimonials about, explaining what they were like to work with and the value they bring to the transaction.


The property market changes at a rapid pace, with a host of related and non-related factors affecting potential sales. The agent you choose should be fully abreast of these market conditions and able to explain which are likely to impact you.


It’s all very well to state a property is worth a certain price, but how will that agent illustrate that value to the market?

Will they actively seek your type of potential buyers in the places they hang out? – whether that’s Facebook, print marketing, or via targeted email campaigns.

Do they have a database of buyers seeking properties similar to yours? And what tools do they have at their disposal? Will the marketing campaign be tailored to your specific property or is it run of the mill?

Can you work with them?

Most importantly do you have faith in the agent who sits before you? Do they share similar values and the same perspective of your property that you do?

Have they taken the time to understand what you’re trying to achieve, and have they illustrated they know exactly how to attain the goal you’re seeking?

The best agents will work with you. They will also take the time to offer their honest expertise. Occasionally that may mean they believe your property is worth slightly less than you’d hoped for, but if they are a person you have faith in, it’s worth taking that opinion on board.

The truth about price

Price is just one element of a property sale. You also need to consider how long you are willing to have your home on the market, the commission involved, the advertising budget, and the real cost that may be incurred from pricing your property unrealistically at the outset.

The reality is, unrealistic pricing that does not meet the market could cost you potential buyers, could cost you extra in advertising and ultimately may cost you a sale.