Whether you’ve decided to sell your home, or buy one, aligning yourself with the right real estate professional can be an important first step.
Although you can do a significant amount of research on your own, a real estate agent may know about listings before they are available online and may have additional insight into the property, the market, and the neighborhood.
More importantly, a real estate professional will help you navigate all aspects of a real estate transaction. From targeting the right neighborhoods to pricing, staging, negotiating, financing, inspections, appraisals and more!
How do you begin your search for a real estate agent?
- Do your homework online. Most real estate professionals have a social media presence, making it easy to get a feel for who they are and what it’s like to work with him or her. Online reviews from past clients offer particularly valuable information. Check out the agent’s current listings online to evaluate their expertise and ability to market effectively.
- Ask for recommendations from friends and family who have recently used a real estate agent to buy or sell.
- If you are already working with a mortgage professional to secure financing, ask him or her for a referral to an agent they have worked with and trust.
- Attend open houses in the neighborhoods you are interested in. Chat with the agents and ask lots of questions.
What questions should you ask a real estate agent?
- What does the current market look like?
- What is your advice for competing in a tight market?
- What neighborhoods do you usually work in?
- How long have you been in business?
- How are you going to communicate with me?
- How will you price the home I’m selling or how will you help me find homes within my price range?
- When should I put my house on the market?
- What do you suggest I do to get my home ready to sell?
It’s helpful to have your financing worked out early in your home search in order to target neighborhoods that meet your lifestyle needs as well as your financial guidelines. Contact a trusted loan advisor to help you get started today!
By Kaitlin Joseph