Buying or Selling a Home – Finding a Real Estate Agent

Buying or selling a home is probably one of the largest financial transactions you will ever have. It can be a complicated and time-consuming endeavor. Enlisting help from a real estate agent can ensure the process will be less stressful and more enjoyable. Following are the benefits of using a real estate agent and tips for finding a seasoned, knowledgeable real estate professional.

Following are the benefits of using a real estate agent:

  • Preparing your home for sale. A full-service real estate agent can assist you with getting your home ready for sale by providing invaluable suggestions as well as pricing information for comparable properties to establish your asking price.
  • Advertising your home. When the time comes to list your house, an agent can advertise, market and show your home to prospective buyers.
  • Negotiating the cost. Once you have an interested buyer, a real estate agent can help you negotiate with interested buyers as well as make arrangements for the closing.

Following are tips for finding a seasoned, knowledgeable real estate professional who understands local market conditions and has the specific experience to best meet your needs:

  • Interview several agents to determine which one best meets your needs. Don’t go with the first one you meet.
  • Beware of hiring a family member or friend as a real estate agent. Although it would be nice to pass the real estate commission on to a loved one, it is ultimately best to go with an agent with a proven track record in your marketplace.
  • Hire a full-time agent as opposed to someone who practices real estate in their spare time. Real estate transactions are complex endeavors requiring agents who are committed to your transaction and understand the ins and outs of the process.
  • Ask your selected real estate agent for a market analysis that compares your house to others on the market to ensure the agent you have chosen has done the proper homework and understands the nuances of your housing market.
  • Inquire about past houses the agent has sold, including the list price, the actual selling price, and the average length of time it took to sell the houses.
  • Get references from their last three clients. Be wary if the real estate agent hesitates to give you this information.
  • Ask your agent how they plan to drive traffic to your home in order to generate multiple offers.
  • Select a real estate agent you enjoy working with.