Since the average person knows 12 real estate agents and more people are licensed daily, it’s easy to wonder, How do I make an informed decision when choosing my realtor?
Of course picking up the phone and calling me would be easy, but you could also call your previous agent or a trusted licensed friend. Here are a few suggestions for those who don’t have those options or who need a new Realtor.
Work with an active Realtor
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports that 28% of home buyers find their home using a realtor. This underscores the importance of utilizing an active realtor. Numerous realtors use real estate as a side hustle and others like to keep an active license on the off chance their mother’s third cousin is in the market.
The bottom line: you want to work with someone who’s actively working. The Realtor is building relationships, establishing a reputation, learning new laws and guidelines and is familiar with industry standards. All of this translates to a higher potential for a better transaction for you.
Ask about recent sales
Sometimes when interviewing agents, potential clients like to ask about productivity. Keep in mind, the answer you receive may not tell the full story. Asking how many years they’ve been a Realtor doesn’t tell all, either.
Ask your potential agents, How many homes have you sold in the last 12 months? This way you can better understand how many people they have actually served and how many times they have been through a complete transaction process.
Each market has its own average transactions per agent and you can find that at your local real estate board. According to the NAR, in 2018 the median number of residential sales for all realtors nationwide was 11 to 12.
Work with someone you trust
Trustworthiness isn’t part of a Realtor’s fiduciary duties, but it covers a lot. Be cognizant of how you feel around Realtors when you meet them for the first time or if you trust them to get you through the process as smoothly as possible. Here are a few questions you can ask to see if they can give you a genuine answer or a canned response.
Are they familiar with your type of purchase or sale?
How familiar are they with your unique situation? Are they willing to learn more if given the opportunity?
Are they able to accept criticism, reshift to find a solution and help you reach the finish line? What is their communication style?
Are they willing to explore and try unique innovative ways to help you reach your goals?
Finding a quality real estate agent can seem daunting, unimportant or unnecessary, but you need an advocate and trusted advisor prior to starting a transaction. Your realtor is the licensed professional whose job is to take care of you to do the heavy lifting with laws, paperwork, and closing this most-important deal. There’s no need to go through the process alone when it’s our job to be here for you.