Using the right Realtor can make a significant difference in the the amount you pay or receive when buying or selling a home, as well as in the efficiency of the entire transaction. However, you have to do a bit of homework for this.
Below are pointers to help you find a Realtor who can provide valuable help:
Don’t settle for anyone less than a pro.
Realtor, broker and agent are three words that are typically used interchangeably, but they shouldn’t be. First of all, there are brokers and agents who are not Realtors. A Realtor is a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors and operates along the organization’s strict ethical standards which sometimes go beyond state law.
Look for experience.
Whether you want a Realtor to help you purchase or sell a house, don’t just be part of learning curve. Among the first questions you should ask a prospective Realtor is how long they’ve had their license and how many years they’ve worked in the area.
Get personal referrals.
Family, friends and co-workers can provide some personal recommendations. Ask for as many details as possible about their experience with the Realtor and whether they were happy with it overall? Your local yellow pages can be a good place to look, or scour the World Wide Web for some leads. If you’re selling your house, see if there are any sold signs within your neighborhood.
Regardless of whether you’re a buyer or a seller, you need a Realtor who knows the ins and outs of the area. Ask your prospects if they have sold or listed in the place recently. If you’re buying a property, pick a Realtor who can supply you with crucial information related to the community – for instance, taxes, nearby schools, and so forth. As a seller, your agent should be able to talk to prospective buyers about such details.
Set and stay inside your range.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a buyer or a seller – you need a Realtor who focuseson your price range. So if you’re thinking of buying a house with a price of $250,000 to $300,000, consult your local paper’s real estate listings to find out which Realtors are in that particular range. If a Realtor works with more expensive or cheaper homes, they won’t be as knowledgeable when showing you properties in your own price range.
Find someone you have chemistry with.
As soon as you’ve narrowed your search down to a few Realtors, decide which one you like the most as a person. You may be a buyer or a seller, but either way, you’ll be spending a good amount of time with your Realtor, so it has to be someone you feel is your best match.