Buying or selling a home is no small feat. It’s one of the biggest financial decisions of your life, and it’s not something to be taken lightly! That’s why finding an experienced real estate agent who will guide you through this process can make all the difference in how smoothly things go for you.
The market is flooded with agents, and it can be difficult to find the right one. But if you want a professional who will best serve your needs (and keep things stress-free), follow these tips for finding an agent that suits them well!
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Talk to a Lender First
It’s important to get preapproval for your mortgage before you start shopping around. A few conversations with a lender will help identify the maximum amount that you can borrow, as well as any issues that may need addressing early in the process.
This not only lets buyers know they are serious about finding their home but also shows Realtors and sellers alike which homes fit within certain price ranges while avoiding competition on more expensive properties. If competitive markets like those found here in Orlando, FL exist where many people want to buy houses in florida, an offer might not be accepted without a letter of preapproval from lenders identified by potential homeowners beforehand!
Ask Your Network for Referrals
Asking friends and family members for a recommendation on which real estate agent to work with is an excellent way of narrowing your search. Keep in mind that the needs of first-time buyers are different than those who have bought before or want to downsize, so it’s important you find someone experienced working with clients like yourself.
Numerous studies show that people are more likely to trust Realtors who belong to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The NAR is a highly-respected organization with strict code of ethics. All members adhere by their rules, which ensures your safety and success in real estate transactions.
A professional agent will be able to help you navigate through several types of properties. Also, look for other certifications Realtors in your area may have. Some certifications include CRS, ARB, and SRES, which all signify extra training the Realtor has studied. A CRS (Certified Residential Specialist) will likely help most with finding a new place for you to live. An Accredited Buyers Representative – ABR – specialize in helping buyers find the right homes for them. Finally, a SRES (Seniors Real Estate Specialist) will have training as both CRS and ARB, but is designated to helping individuals of 50 years of age or older.
Sometimes, a single real estate agent can act as an agent for both parties. This usually occurs when buyers and sellers resort to the same brokerage company in order to find someone who will represent them. There are some states that do not allow dual agency because of its inherent risks; make sure you know your state’s policies before agreeing to this arrangement with your broker.
Research Local Agents
Start by examining an agent’s online presence. Check the Agent’s website and active social media accounts, they might have a blog post or two about what it is like to be in their industry as well! Take a look at their reviews–if you find more than one negative review then that could potentially be something to worry about.
You can be sure that your real estate agent is the best for you by asking a few questions. Is he or she licensed? How many years of experience do they have in this field? Have any complaints been filed against them, and if so what were the circumstances surrounding these complaints?
If you’re looking to buy a home, it’s best to start early and research your options. Take the time now before you even get pre-approved for financing so that when the opportunity arises, you’ll know what type of agent would be well suited for finding just the right property for you. Jot down which must-haves are important to you based on factors such as location, style of home or proximity to amenities like schools or parks, etc.
Interview a Handful of Local Agents
The more the merrier, but try to set up interviews with 3-5 Realtors you’ve conducted research on. There are many opportunities for you to get a sense of the real estate agent’s style and experience during your interview. Ultimately, you will want someone who is familiar with the area that interests you best!
The interviews also give people in need an opportunity to find out how they communicate their needs as well as availability. Think about what works best for YOU–texting or talking on the phone? If it’s easier texting then make sure that person has no problem using this form of communication too!
Check Their References!
Ask agents about what their clients are saying. Call them up and find out how they felt during the process, whether or not they’d hire that agent again for future transactions, and why. You can also have a conversation with some of those past clients to get an even better idea of who this professional is as well as see if you share any values in common!
Trust Your Intuition
Agents should be able to guide you smoothly through the process and it is important that they are someone who communicates with confidence. The knowledge of an agent will not matter as much if they can’t communicate well, so make sure you choose an agent you feel could be a friend!
Read That Fine Print
With both parties in agreement, it’s time to move forward. Be sure your contract includes the terms you already agreed on such as real estate commissions and how they should be split up between agents. Historically, sellers pay a 6% commission of their sale with half going towards his or her agent and the other half goes to theirs.
If you’re looking to sell your home in a competitive housing market, it can take just 30 days or less. Make sure that your contract is limited to six months and that if nothing happens within this time frame, you have the ability to switch agents. Similarly as buyers- make sure not only do they find their dream house but keep an open mind with how many homes are on the market at any given moment for them!
The Big Picture
Though it may seem like home buying is easy, there’s a lot that goes into the process. The right real estate agent can make all of the difference when entering this competitive market and finding properties for your budget in an efficient manner. When choosing to work with either a listing or buyer’s agent, you should consider their experience level within specific areas as well as how professional they appear during negotiations so you come out ahead!