Whether you are doing your first real estate transaction or you are a veteran, having the right realtor is crucial. With over 3 million real estate agents in the U.S. alone, how are you expected to find the right realtor for you?
Essential questions to ask when choosing your realtor
- How long have you been selling real estate? A realtor who has seen many different situations is less likely to be rattled should any bumps be encountered down the road.
- What area do you cover? Find a realtor who is the local expert and maintains up-to-date knowledge of the local neighborhood. Find someone who works both in and around your main area of interest.
- What is your average number of clients? If your realtor is working with a high volume of clients? Is there other team members who can help? Does he/she have an assistant who can offer help?
- Are you part of a team? Working with a team can have many benefits. Within a team, its members will have wider level of experience.
- What is your ratio of buyers to sellers? As you talk with realtors, you will find many work with primarily buyers or sellers. On many teams, there are designated buyer agents and listing agents. This is also helpful, should you be looking to sell your current house and buy another, the transaction will be much more seamless should one realtor be able to oversee the entire process.
- Are you experienced in handling unique situations? Are you a long-term investor, first-time homebuyer, house-flipper or selling an estate? These are a few unique scenarios you may find yourself in and you don’t want a realtor who has little to no experience in your specific area.
- What type of communication should I expect from you? By this point, you should already notice if you and the realtor understand how each of you communicates. This is where you both set expectations for how often you should be updated, the best methods to use and who all needs to be updated. This should be determined by what makes you, as the client, feel most comfortable.
- Do you have a recommended vendor list? An experienced realtor will have developed trusted relationships with other industry professionals. From lenders and title companies to contractors and inspectors, your realtor should be able to refer you to multiple sources so you can determine what works best for you.
- Do you have references? A realtor should be able to judge the customer service provided, but, no one can better say than his past clients.
- What questions do you have for me? This is the most important question you will ask. The true determination of a person’s mindset and priorities is exposed by the questions he asks. Anyone can ask how much you want to sell your house for or how many bedrooms you want in your new home. If a realtor takes the time to get to know you, your goals and your priorities, this is an excellent indicator that he is already setting a foundation of client-centered service.
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