Whether you are buying a new house or selling your sentimental family home, it is always helpful to have a skilled and experienced real estate agent by your side. But how can you find the perfect agent for you?
Step #1: Ask your inner circle
Your first instinct to finding a real estate agent is probably to ask your inner circle.
If you know a family member or a friend who has bought or sold a home in your area recently, ask them about the people that they worked with. If they had a positive experience with their agent, it may be worth looking into whether they would be a good fit for your situation as well. A word of mouth recommendation can quickly lead you to a trusted real estate agent. (Especially if you heard their name more than once!)
Step #2: Read their testimonials
After you’ve narrowed down a list of recommended real estate agents, look each of them up and read their testimonials.
Before hiring an agent, you should always take a look at the reviews that have been left by former clients. If you notice a large number of negative comments or a few comments that mention the same issues repeatedly, it may be wise to think twice about making the hire.
Troyce Gatewood was awarded “Best Real Estate Agent in Frederick” by the readers of the Frederick News-Post in 2018. She is also Premier Agent on Zillow! .
Step #3: Ask about their local knowledge
Reading the reviews will probably cross some agents off your initial list. The next step is to inquire about their local knowledge.
When buying a house, you want to be able to work with an agent who can guide you toward neighborhoods that suit your lifestyle. When selling your home, you want to work with an agent who knows how to sell homes that are similar in style, size, and location to yours. With this info in mind, you should always ask agents about their knowledge of the local market before deciding if you are going to hire them. Do they live in the area? If so, for how long? How long have they been a real estate agent serving this market?
Step #4: Check the depth of their network
When you sit down with one of your potential real estate agents, you should inquire about their network. When buying, you will want to specifically ask about their connections with mortgage brokers and home inspectors. If you are selling, you should ask about their network of handymen, painters, and plumbers. Put simply, you want to do business with the kind of agent who has the connections necessary to help you.
Step #5: Dive into their Metrics
Anyone can open a door to a home and show you around. But to get the most value out of hiring an agent, you want someone who knows the market, has excellent negotiating skills and has the experience to overcome any obstacles that surface. You don’t get that kind of high-quality agent with someone who treats the job as a hobby.
Here are a few good questions to ask your potential agents:
- What are your stats?
- What are your average days on market?
- What is the average list price to close price percentage?
- How long have you been selling real estate?
- Are you a full-time or part-time agent?
- What was your previous job?
Now that you’ve collected all of the important information, it’s time to make a decision. Choosing the right real estate agent is an important part of any buying or selling process. By following these steps, you can be confident that you are choosing the right person for you!