5 Key Question To Ask WHen Choosing A Real Estate Agent
Your home is likely the largest investment you’ll ever make in your lifetime. Likewise, selling your home is most likely the largest transaction you’ll ever make. Therefore, choosing the real estate agent who will represent you throughout the home-buying or selling process is vitally important. After all, whoever you choose will have significant impact on the amount of money that you stand to spend or make.
Yet, many people don’t think twice when they select a real estate agent, and many do not interview multiple agents. So, before you trust such an important life decision to your old high school buddy, your niece, your coworker’s uncle, etc., you’ll want to do your homework to make sure you connect with the agent who is right for you and for your situation.
You can begin your search for a real estate agent by asking friends or family members for recommendations or by going online and reading through agent profiles and reviews. Tip: Confirm that the agents you will be calling upon are members of the National Association of REALTORS® to ensure that they have received the training and education necessary to protect your best interests.
Once you’ve identified a handful of agents who meet your criteria, you’ll want to sit down with them to get a feel for who you’d like to partner with on your real estate journey.
Here are five key questions to ask yourself when choosing a real estate agent:
1. Is the agent a good listener? It may sound obvious, but choosing an agent who is a good listener is key to a successful real estate transaction. People often begin the buying or selling process with a specific vision in mind — whether it’s a particular neighborhood or style of home that they are after. A good real estate agent will listen to your needs and wants, and suggest strategies to achieve your goals.
2. Is the agent knowledgeable and a problem-solver? Did you know that a typical home sale today involves more than 20 steps from when the initial listing contract is signed until closing? With this many moving pieces, you’ll want an agent who has an eye for detail and a thorough understanding of the steps involved in purchasing or selling a home to ensure that your transaction closes smoothly.
Your agent doesn’t have to know everything; after all, no two transactions are alike, but they should know how to ask the right questions and where to find the right answers. And they should be resourceful and level-headed when it comes to tackling any challenges that may pop up.
3. What resources does the agent have to support you? Not all agents have the same marketing or administrative resources. When comparing agents, you’ll want to consider the level of support that they are given by their firm. For example, large firms like Locations have the resources to ensure that your property is marketed widely and effectively, and that someone will always be available to respond to your calls or emails throughout your home search and transaction.
4. How will the agent market you? If you will be selling your home, take a peek at the agent’s current listings. Did they use professional, high-quality photos and videos? Did they write a property description that shows the property in its best light and motivates buyers to take action? How do they market properties to target buyers?
If you are searching for a home, how will the agent present you to sellers? Will they craft a thoughtful letter on your behalf? How will they “win” in a tough negotiation? Ask for specific examples of how they have helped past clients to secure the home of their dreams.
5. What is your gut feeling? Finally, once you have gotten satisfactory answers to these questions, what’s your “gut” feeling? Would you feel comfortable discussing your financial and personal situation with the agent? Do you feel that you can trust them with your most confidential information, and that they truly care about your long-term plans? If you can answer “Yes” to those questions, congratulations! You’ve you found the right REALTOR® for you.
To search find a Locations agent by languages spoken, visit LocationsHawaii.com/agent