An agent may contact you with a potential buyer at a price that sounds good to you. But how do you know that it is truly the market price?
The highest sale price is rarely obtained with a private sale. The highest price is usually obtained with maximum market exposure. The minimum marketing your agent should do is offer your property through the Santa Barbara Multiple Listing Service (MLS), and for a reasonable period of time, even if they have a buyer themselves.
The Santa Barbara Multiple Listing Service is not only a compilation of all participating agents' listed properties, but it includes an offer of co-operation and compensation with other participating agents.
Having your property listed in the MLS exposes it to all the agents who are active in our area and their potential buyers.
To get the highest price, time on the market is still essential. The best listing agents counsel their sellers not to consider offers for at least seven days from placement in the MLS. This gives all of the current potential buyers the opportunity to contemplate making an offer. There may be a bit of effort and time required, but that is how you get the most for your property and a true market price.
Realtors have a duty to best represent a client's interest not just by law, but by the Code of Ethics they subscribe to. Be sure your agent is a Realtor.
— Ed Fuller is a real estate broker with San Roque Realty Inc. and president of the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors. Contact him at email@example.com or 805.687.1551. The opinions expressed are his own.