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Sellers often choose their estate agents based largely on the property valuation they receive.

However, Chris Cilliers, chief executive and co-principal of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty in the Winelands, says the highest valuation is seldom the right one.

Rather, a comprehensive marketing strategy should be one of the key criteria when selecting an agent. An agent’s experience and trackrecord should be taken into account.

“In real estate, the practice of offering extremely optimistic appraisals in order to obtain sole mandates does unfortunately happen, especially during tough economic times.”

But, at the end of the day, agents are only in control of the marketing of a property, she says.

“Therefore, it’s imperative that sellers choose an agent and agency based on their marketing offering, together with their experience and track record.

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