For most Americans, purchasing a home is one of biggest financial decisions they will ever make, and having proper guidance is critical. Whether you are planning to buy a home, or sell your existing one, using a Realtor is absolutely the way to go. Studies revealed that over 90% of buyers and sellers have used Realtors in recent transactions.
Why should you use a Realtor? Here are a few solid reasons:
- Responsibility– When you are working with a Realtor, YOU are their priority. This means you have a professional looking out for your financial best interest. Realtors are contractually obligated to protect you.
- Helping you find the right home– Realtors have immediate access to info on a property that goes beyond just the square footage.
- Correct Pricing– While you can use various websites to run price comparisons on a home, incorrect pricing is a risk factor, due to incorrect market data. Realtors know the market, and can provide you with a number that makes the most sense.
- Contracts and Negotiations– Realtors are trained to correctly process, comprehend, and negotiate contracts. With amendments, addendums, contingencies, and many other road blocks that can come with a contract, it can get overwhelming. A real estate agent will be able to handle everything that comes your way.
All these things considered, it is of utmost importance to pick the RIGHT agent for YOU. Most areas are saturated with Realtors. They key is to find the one that best fits your needs, and has your best interest in mind. Here are some things to consider when making a choice.
How long have they been in the business? When I say this, I do not just mean years. While it may seem like the right choice to pick a Realtor who has more years under their belt, this isn’t necessarily true. In some instances, an agent who has been in the business for only a year may have had more successful transactions than another agent who has been in the business for five. Some Realtors only work on a part-time basis, which has the potential to be inconvenient. Along with their experience, it is important to know how many transactions your Realtor has handled that are similar to your own.
How well do they communicate with you? The real estate market is hot right now, and a lapse in communication of just a few hours can have a negative impact on an accepted offer. Choose an agent who can respond quickly to you. Some agents work with a team, so it is important to clarify who your main point of contact will be.
Are they willing to share their references? Everyone is always on their best behavior during an interview process. If you were hiring an employee to work for your company, wouldn’t you want to check their references? Remember, while you yourself are not a “company” per say, you still are interviewing a professional to work for you. The best way to get to know how your candidate conducts business is to get in contact with some of their past clients.
What marketing techniques do they use? Unfortunately, so many Realtors will hang their sign in your yard, and call it a day. This can lead to your listing becoming expired, ultimately putting you back at square one. A good Realtor will utilize all avenues in order to get your home in front of as many eyes as possible. Aside from the obvious real estate websites such as Zillow, Trulia, etc., another rapidly growing marketing tool is social media. It is important to visit your candidate’s social media pages to see just how well they have marketed past clients’ properties. The right Realtor will also have their own website domain that they should be updating regularly. Nobody wants to look at a stale web page, with a listing that was posted in 2013 as the last update. Be sure your potential Realtor is up to date with their marketing techniques, because this will be a key factor in getting your home sold quickly and for top dollar.
Does their personality mix well with yours? This may seem trivial, but believe me, this will have a huge impact on your transaction. While an agent comes at no cost to a buyer, it is still important to have a Realtor who you can relate with. As well as fun and exciting, home buying and selling can also be tedious and stressful. Your Realtor will be your main source of information. If you’re using the right Realtor, they will be in touch with you at least weekly. Be sure to choose someone who you can rely on, relate to, and share mutual respect with.
These are some of the important things to consider, whether you are in the market to sell, or buy. Remember, not all Realtors are created equal, and you have the opportunity to pick and choose who will represent you. Happy hunting!