Wednesday, October 24, 2018

How to Select a Real Estate Agent

Whether you are a property owner who wishes to sell real estate or whether you are a prospective buyer who wants to buy a property, you will need to hire a real estate agent to help you in your endeavor. When it comes to hiring property agents, not all home buyers and sellers are as informed as they should be about these service professionals. The following tips will help you analyze a real estate agent's credentials, his work and success stories so that you can conveniently achieve your goal.

Here are some useful ways by which you can find out more about the agent before you decide to get him on board.

  • Get in touch with the agent’s recent clients

Ask the potential agents to bring with them a list of their previous clients along with what they have listed or sold in the past one year. Now before you pick up the phone and start calling up the clients, ask your agent if you should expect any specific client to be particularly satisfied or particularly upset. You can also ask the other clients about the asking price and sale price. If you happen to be the seller, find out if the properties sold by this agent are similar to yours in terms of price, amenities and features. One should hire an agent who has a specialization in the type of property you are looking for or wish to offload. You may also ask the clients as to how long their property been on the market?

  • Check the license

Real estate dealers must hold a license that is authorized by a board of a particular state. You should check with your state's regulatory body to find out if the agent is licensed and whether there has been any sort of complaint or disciplinary action taken against him. You may be able to find information related to certain states on databases available online, which the consumers can access.

  • Opt for the best

Check out the peer-given awards held by the agents. Look for felicitations that actually mean something, for instance, ‘Realtor of the Year’ award conferred by the state or an association of realtors. Real estate agents are best judged by contemporaries and peers and if an agent has been honored by his allies then that is a huge endorsement.

  • Look for the right credentials

Just like doctors specialize and have a niche, real estate agents also excel in a niche. Even professionals working in the general sphere will seek special training in a particular area. So make sure you go through the name and look for any indication that the agent has made extra effort and taken specialized training in a specific sub-domain of property sales. Here is what the designations imply –

    1. Accredited Buyer's Representative or ABR – The agent has added education in representing shoppers in a transaction.
    2. Certified Residential Specialist or CRS – This implies that the person holds extra training in managing residential real estate.
    3. Seniors Real Estate Specialist or SRES – This means that the agent has completed training for helping both sellers and buyers who are over 50 years of age.

  • Find out how much experience the agent holds
You can find out facts like how long a particular agent has been dealing in real estate. Such information can be obtained from the state licensing authority. Or you may simply inquire the details from the agent himself. If the agent has been out of business for over five years, they could now be learning on you which is definitely not good. You should always hire a professional who has been actively engaged in a specific sub-domain and price category. You should gauge the magnitude of knowledge of through these two parameters and check the agent’s market presence.

  • Check the current listings
Go through the agent's listings shown online. Check out the agent’s official website or other portals with Multiple Listing Service as a searchable online database. Nowadays, most buyers begin their search over the Internet. Thus, you should hire an agent who uses the web effectively. Presentation is everything and so the agent must be able to show his work through pictures of properties and establish credibility through listings. 

Your responsibility is to see how close the listings come to the type of property you wish to sell or buy. You should also check whether the agent operates in the area where you would like to invest and whether he has dealt with homes in the same price range. The person must be able to have sufficient listings to portray a steady business. However, the list should not be extremely long either because then you will just be a mere number in it. 

You can also assess the agent’s proficiency by mentioning about a recent deal in the area. If he knows about it and can give some details, this means that he knows his job and you can hire him immediately.

Lastly, don't forget to check the various fees charged by the real estate agent. And compare these fees with other real estate agents in the locality.

This is a guest post by Devika Arora who is a professional writer dedicated to following the current real estate trends and writing guest posts and blog posts for the benefit of potential home buyers and investors. The above article talks about how to choose a property agent.


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