A lot of people think that a Realtor’s job is opening doors, going in and out of houses checking out the furnishings and saying things like “and through this door you’ll find the kitchen.” If only it were so simple! A good Realtor should be able to help you match a community to your wants and needs, help you determine the costs with taxes, amenities and other fees you’ll be paying, negotiate the best deal available on the home you love, write a tight contract protecting your interests and point out the good, bad and ugly of purchasing that home, It kind of reminds me of that iconic and corny song with lyrics that said “she can bring home the bacon, fry it up in the pan,” etc..
Buying a home is a giant financial step for most people and it is a journey you should not take with just anyone. Make sure you ask the right questions to ensure that your agent has the skills needed to get the job done. Here are some tips on picking the right agent for you:
1 – Ask if they are a full time agent because doing a superior job as a Realtor is impossible to do “part time.”
2 - Are they a designated Buyer Representative? The extra training buyer agents receive helps them provide a better level of service to their clients.
3 – Ask for references. Tell them to give you a list of their past 3 to 5 buyers they worked with and follow up with a phone call to ask those buyers about their experience.
4 – Did the agent ask if you were prequalified? If not, don’t waste your time! Any agent who doesn’t ask you to take that step immediately is not taking care of business which includes protecting your valuable time---and theirs! A good agent knows that it is not in your interest to look at homes you can’t afford as ultimately you will be disappointed and they will have wasted a lot of time getting your hopes up for nothing.
5 – Do they communicate well? You will have a lot of questions during the process so you need someone you feel comfortable contacting about any questions or concerns throughout the transaction. If they don’t return calls promptly or respond to text or emails in a reasonable amount of time, just say NEXT!
Take the time to find a good match, you’ll be glad you did! Otherwise you may end up with someone who just has the ability to open a lockbox to say “and here you’ll find the living room.” You deserve better than that, so make sure you get it.