Finding The Right Real Estate Agent

finding the right real estate agent
Finding the right real estate agent can be a challenge. I mean, we're talking about possibly THE largest purchase you will make in your lifetime. You sure don't want to leave something like that in the hands of just anyone. Your real estate agent should meet your expectations. So, how do you find the right real estate agent for you? There are several questions to keep in mind when looking for an agent.

How long have you been in business?

Newer agents aren't always a bad thing. It really depends on their training experience. Agents with a little more longevity in the business will have a lot more clientele and experience than newer agents. Newer agents will tend to have more time for you because they haven't yet built a large client base. If you really like a newer agent and seem to connect well with them, check out their support team and/or mentor. If they have a strong, experienced team behind them, there's no reason why you shouldn't hire them.

What is your average List-Price-to-Sales-Price Ratio?

List-price to sales-price ratio is the final sale price divided by the final list price. For example, if the ratio is above 100% the home sold for over asking price. If you're a home buyer looking at a home that is out of your price range by a couple thousand, a buyer's agent with good negotiating skills may be able to bring the price down for you by a reasonable standard. You'll want a buyer’s agent who knows what they're doing, knows the market, and has strong negotiating skills. On the other hand, if you're a home seller, ask potential real estate listing agents for their list price to sales price stats. The scale of success is relative to the area market, but a successful agent in our area should be averaging above 96%.

What is the best marketing plan you can create for my needs?

As a home buyer you should find out the following:

finding the right real estate agent
What goes into the finding of my home?
How many homes, on average, am I going to look at before I find one that I want?
If and when I find the home I want, will I be competing with others?
How do you handle several offers on one home?
Do you, as an agent, present the offer or am I involved?
Can you assist me in obtaining a loan pre-approval?

As a home seller you should find out the following:

What is your marketing plan for my listing?
Do I have input on my own marketing plan?
Will all potential buyers touring my home be pre-approved for lending?

Whether you are a home buyer or home seller, you should ask these questions:

Could you provide references from past clients/colleagues/employees?
References are something that no real estate agent turns down. They either have past clients that have enjoyed working with them, or they have employees/industry colleagues that can vouch for how good of an agent they really are.

Could you name some things that separate you from your competition?

This answer will be one that a real estate agent shouldn't hesitate to answer. A real estate agent with strong principals and ethics will be able to provide a concise answer to this question WITHOUT bashing their competitors.

Do you have documents that I can view beforehand so I know what to do?

Real estate agents should have documents which clients can preview so they can get a gist of what to expect.
A good real estate agent will walk you through the process before you are required to sign anything.

Can you help me find other professionals?

finding the right real estate agent
At this time let the agent explain to you who he/she works with and why he/she has chosen them. At a minimum, they should be able to provide a mortgage broker, home inspector, and a title company to work with.
Above all these; whether you are buying or selling, you must choose a real estate agent whom you are comfortable with.