You have a friend or family member who’s an agent?  Of course you should list with them!

Well, no.  Once you think it over for a while, what might initially seem like an easy decision about who to list with quickly turns into an easy decision about who NOT to list with.

What am I talking about, you wonder?  You know this person.  You travel in a lot of the same circles.  You LIKE this person.

And those last two sentences are exactly why you should choose a different agent.

Selling a house is a high pressure, high anxiety situation.  If you’re like most people, the majority of your net worth comes from the equity in your home.  Now, imagine if things don’t work out exactly as you’d hoped.

What if all the potential buyers want a reduced price?  What if the house sits on the market unsold for half a year or longer?  Then you’re in the position of wondering if your trusted acquaintance was really the right choice.  You start to harbour doubts.  You might even get into an argument or have a falling out.  Do you want to risk a friendship over money?

Should that happen, or should ANY disagreements or unhappiness occur, keep in mind you’ll both be complaining to a lot of the same people.  Your mutual friends and relatives will be put in the uncomfortable position of either having to choose sides, or refusing to choose sides, while each of you wonders if they are just claiming to remain neutral while secretly siding with your former friend/new enemy.  Do you really want to risk straining so many relationships?

You might also want to consider that your agent will be privy to a great deal of financial information most people wouldn’t want to broadcast among their family and friends.  Doesn’t it make sense to keep this information in the hands of someone with whom you have a purely fiduciary relationship, so there is no danger of it slipping out in future conversations?

And perhaps most of all, the results of this sale will almost certainly make an enormous impact on your future financial situation.  Considering what is at stake, shouldn’t your hiring decision be based on who is most qualified for the task at hand?  Instead of choosing purely on the basis of whom you know, why not choose an expert agent who specializes in selling homes of this type in your area, who knows the market, and who has a great track record?

If your primary concern is a top quality agent, then please note my numerous sales of similar properties in your area, many of them made in the midst of an extremely difficult market.  While I certainly understand and appreciate your desire to list with someone you know well, let me urge you to go with an impartial expert who can evaluate your property and situation objectively and get you the best deal in the quickest time frame.

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