How to choose a reliable real estate agent
Buying or selling real estate can be a daunting task for many of us who do not know the market, its dynamics and being a beginner, are not even aware of how to go about it. The role of a reliable and dependable real estate agent is critical in these situations. Though many may disagree, considering the amount of money these middle-men have to be paid for finalizing the deal, but if you are inexperienced and dealing with real estate for the first time, the services of a real estate agent can be invaluable, even if it means sharing your profits with a professional. This can in the long run, save you from many pitfalls where you lose time, energy and of course money! The first point to remember is that with the current bust in real estate business, the market is skewed more towards the service buyers than the service providers. This means that there are more real estate agents than real estates! This situation automatically benefits you since there is huge competition amongst the real estate agents and everyone is pitting against one another for business. In this kind of market, you could strike a good deal with an agent. With this as the backdrop, where do you start and how do you begin? Here are some of the basic guidelines to start with your real estate project:
Check the credentials: The first point in your working agenda is to check the business record and credential of the company. Do they have a good standing in the local, state or national markets? Are they members of any professional association of Realtors? Only companies with good standing with a professional association can call themselves as realtors. Or else, they are just ‘agents’.
Check their professionalism: There are many ‘agents’ who work on this profession only part time. Check this out – as they have to deal with both the buyer and the seller of the property. If they are spending only part of the working hours in this business, you may have serious problems dealing with such people and may take many weeks to finalize a simple deal.
Check their experience: This is very important. Their knowledge and expertise in dealing with real estate in a particular state or city will be particularly relevant once you decide to buy or sell a property in that area. For example, if you are interested in buying or selling a property in a large multiplex and the real estate agent is clueless of the rules and regulations of dealing with such property, then you have a major problem in your hands.
Check your level of comfort while dealing: Buying or selling real estate requires a lot of verbal and non-verbal communication with the real estate agent. Check out your comfort level during communication. An experienced real agent knows that a potential customer may or may not in the long run do business with them. They are nevertheless polite, communicative and helpful in any case.
Check their past records of dealing in the neighborhood: There is no harm if you ask for the names of their previous customers with whom they have dealt with in the recent past. If the deal has been made in the neighborhood, you could always ask about the customers’ experience over phone. A good referral can clear a lot of your headaches while negotiating with a real estate agent.