Hiring the right real estate agent is essential when you are buying or selling a property, it can help you make the right decisions and avoid any costly mistakes!
Photos By: Stock Images
But not just any agent is going to be the right fit your you, you need to do your due diligence and figure out who is going to suit your specific needs. Whether you go to an individual broker or a brokerage firm like Compass Realty you need to do plenty of research.
What does a real estate agent do?
The job of a real estate agent is to help people buy and sell their homes. They educate their clients about current market conditions, guide them through the process and make referrals to other professionals where necessary such as estate attorneys or home inspectors. A buyer’s agent helps a buyer find and shop listed homes, make competitive offers and negotiate with sellers. A listing agent helps to price, list and market the homes and negotiate with buyers. Sometimes an real estate agent can represent both sides of a single transaction, but it is recommended that you have someone who is solely in your corner.
Realtor vs agent
Not all real estate agents are realtors. Realtors are licensed agents who are members of the National Association of Realtors, by being members they pledge to abide by the standards and code of ethics laid out by the association. Real estate agents must be licensed in the state where they work and abide by the national and state laws. To hold a license one must complete a certain amount of coursework and pass an exam.
Real estate vs broker
A real estate broker goes beyond the level of an agent by undertaking additional training to get their real estate broker license. Brokers must complete all the training, coursework, and exams that an agent does and then work as an agent for a number of years before they can qualify to become a broker. A broker can oversee other real estate agents, work under a managing broker or they can operate independently – agents must work under a broker.
Find and interview real estate agents
You can ask friends and colleagues for referrals to find a number of prospective agents then look them up yourself. Check the company websites and online profiles, read about specialties and experiences, and read through plenty of customer reviews. Narrow it down to at least three agents to interview and dig deeper into their services and how they would work with you.
What questions to ask:
- Will the agent represent my interests?
- What experience and training does the agent have?
- Will the agent or assistants work with me?
- How much will the agent be paid?
- Were recent clients satisfied?
- What challenges will I face as a buyer in today’s market?
- How will you help me find listed homes in my price range?
- How will you help me make competitive offers and negotiate with sellers?
- What are the comparable listings in my area?
- What do you think my home is worth and why?
- What should I do to improve my home?
- How will you market my home?