A Guide to Choosing the Best Real Estate Agent

How to Choose the Best Real Estate Agent

There comes a time in everyone’s property journey when you may need to sell your home or investment property. This is not something you want to do alone, so you will need to find the best real estate agent for the job.

Your journey toward a successful sale begins with the critical task of finding the perfect real estate agent for the job. As your property is likely your most valuable asset, the decision to entrust it to the right professional becomes a pivotal one.

The agent you choose can wield substantial influence over the speed and success of your property’s sale. To ensure you navigate this journey with confidence, here are some indispensable qualities to bear in mind when selecting a real estate agent.

Essential attributes of a top-notch real estate agent


To be an active real estate agent in New Zealand you must be licensed under the Real Estate Authority. To achieve this, you need to obtain a Level 4 certificate in Real Estate before you can apply for your license to work as a real estate salesperson.

Working with a licensed real estate agent means you are trusting in someone knowledgeable of current regulations and industry standards. They are also expected to undergo additional training each year to stay relevant and maintain their license.

Local expertise

You want to partner with an agent who knows the area you are selling in and understands how the marketing is performing. While the definition of local has changed a lot over the years, it doesn’t necessarily mean the agent has to have an office or live in that area. It means the agent must have an in depth knowledge of the local area, as well as having a strong sales record, and it is a bonus if those properties are similar to your own.

The advantages of choosing a local agent extend to a database of potential buyers, insights into comparable sales results, knowledge of local demographics, and the ability to craft targeted marketing campaigns.


An agent's track record speaks volumes about their capabilities. Seek out an experienced agent who can furnish you with a comprehensive list of sales achieved over the past 12 months. If you have a preferred method of sale, such as an auction or negotiation, opt for an agent who specialises in your chosen approach. If you are unsure, talk to your agent about what they think is the best strategy for your property.

Market understanding

Your chosen agent should exhibit a solid grasp of property values by examining comparable sales. As markets can shift rapidly, it is vital to collaborate with an agent who stays abreast of local developments, school zone adjustments, new school openings, access to shopping and healthcare facilities, and evolving transport routes.

It is important that they also know the demographics and the sort of people looking for homes in your area. A good agent will be able to direct you with advice on how to make your home more sellable, by decluttering through to small renovations. They will be able to do this in a way without overcapitalising.

Your local LJ Hooker agent will be able to provide you with our industry-leading Local Market Report, which is packed with property information, trends and insights of your neighbourhood.

In-person assessment

Requesting an in-person property appraisal is a great way to meet agents working in your area and start the hiring process to see if they are a right fit for you. During this process, they will provide you with an indication of what your property could get in the current market.

While real estate agents can’t provide a valuation of your property, they are experts in helping you understand how much your property would be worth if it went to market today. This is done with their local market knowledge and leveraging comparative market data from recent sales.

Check out what listings the agent currently has and visit their open homes to see how they work with potential buyers and showcase a property. You will want to observe whether they:

  • Meet people at the door and capture their details
  • Highlight property features and can answer any questions
  • Follow up with people after the open home to offer more information
  • Property marketing was a good standard


Digital presence

A good agent will recognising the power of a robust marketing campaign that utilises digital channels to heighten the reach of your property listing. Look for agents who leverage e-mailed newsletters, websites, online brochures, social media platforms, and videos. It is also worth checking if your agent has a strategy to utilise Instagram, Facebook and X (Twitter). If you are capturing overseas buyers, WeChat may be a beneficial marketing tool to utilise.

Trustworthiness and professionalism

Honesty and trust form the bedrock of any successful relationship, and this holds especially true in real estate. A professional agent will transparently outline the activities and marketing strategies they intend to employ.

Don't hesitate to request references and referrals to gauge their performance with past clients.

Communication skills

Communication is the linchpin of a successful sales campaign. Identify an agent who is not only approachable but also actively listens to your concerns, answers questions honestly, and consistently keeps you in the loop regarding open home attendance and offers.

In navigating the dynamic real estate market, take the time to align yourself with industry experts capable of providing tailored professional advice. Consider booking a property appraisal from your local LJ Hooker agent, granting you access to invaluable insights into the property landscape. This collaborative effort ensures that your journey toward a successful property sale is guided by expertise, experience, and unwavering commitment.

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