Should I Hire A Senior Real Estate Specialist To Help Sell My Home?

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Making the decision to sell your long-time home can be overwhelming. Choosing a REALTOR® who is a good fit for you and your unique needs can make all the difference.  Everyone knows a REALTOR® but finding the right match can be crucial to ensuring a smooth transaction and/or identifying what will best suit your needs in your next home.

You may meet REALTORs® who refers to themselves as a Seniors Real Estate Specialists®. Understanding how this credential sets one REALTOR® apart from another is important, especially if you’re an older adult preparing to sell your long-time home.

What is the SRES® Certification?

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, “The Seniors Real Estate Specialist® (SRES®) designation is for REALTORS® who want to be able to meet the special needs of maturing Americans when selling, buying, relocating, or refinancing residential or investment properties. By earning the SRES® designation, REALTORS® are prepared to approach mature clients with the best options and information for them to make life-changing decisions.”

Before hiring a (SRES®), be sure to get a better sense for his or her experience by asking about specific cases of  work with older adults. Just because an agent has an SRES® designation, does not mean that you should hire that person. Finding the right agent for your specific needs takes time, relationship building, and a high level of trust and comfort.

It is important for REALTORS® to understand that older adults have significant emotional attachment to their home of 20, 30, 40+ years. In this case, the sale of the home is more than just a “transaction”; it is an emotional process which involves saying goodbye to years of memories, experiences and items of sentimental value.

Preparing a long-time home to be sold is often a daunting task. Leaving the home for buyer showings can be incredibly difficult, especially if there are physical inabilities or a cognitive decline.  A thoughtful approach should be customized to the unique needs of the older adult. Working with a healthy client who has simply made the decision to downsize to a smaller living space requires a different approach than a client in the beginning stages of  cognitive impairment, in which case,  home may no longer be a safe and viable option.

Older adults have very different needs which must be considered when selling or buying. If you are thinking of listing and selling your home and “rightsizing” to a smaller space, whether it be a condo, an independent living or assisted living community, or to live with a family member, consider a few of the following tips:

  • Find an agent who is well-versed in the areas of retirement, downsizing and crisis planning
  • Understand the agent’s background and the expertise
  • Ask about the agent’s experience working with older adults?
  • Make sure you feel comfortable with the agent
  • Find an agent who understands your preferred method of communication, your comfort level with and access to technology, and who will accommodate your needs.

Feel like you need additional guidance or individualized support?

Our team of Certified Senior Advisors® and Certified Dementia Practitioners® has helped hundreds of older adults and their families. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, call 617-227-1600 or email [email protected].

Dovetail Companies provides one point of contact for all services seniors may need when transitioning from their longtime home, minimizing stress and providing peace of mind to focus on the transition rather than the logistics. Dovetail Companies is the parent company to three subsidiary companies; Dovetail Support Services, Dovetail Financial and Dovetail Real Estate Group. For more information, visit or call 617-227-1600.

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