In this post, I want to share some tips to picking a Real Estate Agent who is top notch and knows your local community inside out.
If you want to DIY and don’t mind spending the necessary time to get there, here are some tips to picking a Real Estate Agent that will be a good fit for you.
3 Tips to Picking a Real Estate Agent
Here are some do’s and don’ts to picking a Real Estate Agent you can trust.
Tip 1: Don’t be lazy and pick the first Agent you come across
Everyone is busy. We get it. Who has time to interview multiple people?
People usually don’t enjoy this process.
Most people looking for a Real Estate Agent don’t have time to do the work needed to find one. Which is why The Real Estate Agent Headhunter® began in the first place. But if you still want to do this on your own, be sure to check out multiple Agents—at least 3 or 4 before making a decision.
When people see a sign in a yard they tend to want to call that Agent and are likely to stop their search after the first one…or they ask someone they know for a referral…that’s fine if you want to include a referral in your search. Just don’t run with that one referral before checking their references AND checking out a few other Agents.
Tip 2: Pick a Real Estate Agent with experience in your market
The first thing you want to do is pick an Agent with experience. We recommend five or more years if possible.
This does not mean someone with less than five years cannot do a good job. If you want a lot of personal attention, someone with a year or less can probably give it to you because they don’t have a large client base. Like everything in life, Agent experience is good and something you should seek when picking an Agent.
Along with experience, we recommend picking a real estate agent who knows your area intimately. Your Agent should have a good grasp on market trends and be able to tell you details on how good or bad the local schools are. You will also benefit if your Agent has the scoop on local news like that new prison being proposed close to where you want to buy.
To test their knowledge about your target area, ask the Agent to name some properties on the market in your price range. If they can’t quickly reply back a few examples, that’s a red flag. Another thing to do is ask the Agent for a list of houses they have handled in your target area and have them include what the house sold for and the original list price of the property.
You don’t want an Agent who does real estate part-time as a second job. Find a full-time Agent who is in the trenches gaining the experience you will need to close a good deal.
Need some help finding the right Real Estate Agent? Alina is here to help
Tip #3 Pay Attention to These Red Flags When You Pick an Agent
As you conduct your search, there are some things to be looking out for that will give you clues that the particular Agent you are considering is NOT the right choice.
This first red flag is for sellers: be cautious with an Agent who recommends a price significantly higher for your house than other agents.
I know that may sound counter-intuitive, but going with the Agent who suggests the highest price isn’t always the right decision. Particularly when the price is much higher than what other agents suggest.
A bad Agent could be using this technique as a sneaky tool to grab the listing and then convince you to do non stop price reductions so s/he has a guaranteed sale at the end. They are manipulating you with a higher number to win your business but also hurting your position in the market by turning off potential buyers. And the longer your property sits on the market, the more likely people will think something is not right.
An honest Agent knows what’s realistic for your market.
That’s bad practice.
The best way to make sure this doesn’t happen is to collect listing presentations from 3 Agents or more. This is where their professionalism goes on display—all the Agents are looking at the same data, which means the prices should be close in range if they are doing what’s best for you.
This next red flag is important when looking for an Agent online: The Agents face appears on the web listings. Why is this a red flag? You need to know that when you see a photo of an Agent next to an online listing, that Agent has paid to be on there. Now, this doesn’t mean this Agent is automatically the wrong choice. Just be sure to interview them to see if they truly are an expert in that neighborhood.
If they are not well acquainted with your area, then the Agent may not have much experience dealing with your type of property. For example, if you are interested in buying or selling a duplex or a commercial property, you will want an Agent who frequently closes those types of deals.
And speaking of closing deals, this final red flag is why you should consider asking The Real Estate Headhunter® for help: The Agent is a poor negotiator.
When you hire an Agent to help you with the biggest financial transaction of your life (for most people), how do you know they are good at negotiating?
Aside from taking their word for it, this important trait is not easy to spot until you get to the sale closing. If they are detail oriented they will be taking care of all the little things they should be tracking—like making sure the appraisal is accurate and issues found in the house inspection are fixed. We would hate to see you spend so much time with an Agent and discover these flaws down the road.
Tips to Picking a Real Estate Agent – Need MORE Help?
As you can see, picking a Real Estate Agent is not easy. If you decide to do it on your own, we wish you the best!
Many people ask us to help them pick a Real Estate Agent because they don’t have the time, knowledge or experience to choose the best available Agent out there.
If you would like some FREE help where we do all the heavy lifting to pick the Real Estate Agent of your dreams, then contact us and let’s talk!