Here’s What to Look for in a Realtor if You Wish to Buy a Home
Are you in the market for a new home? Whether you’re a student living with your parents or an adult who has always rented, buying a home is a big deal. But, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has complicated things by driving prices in many markets while drying up supply in others. But if your goal this year is to become a homeowner, finding the right real estate agent is one of the best things you can do for yourself this year. So how do you go about doing so, you ask? Keep reading to learn about what to look for in a realtor if you want to buy a home.
1. Experience matters
When looking for a home, find a realtor with ample experience. The agent should have years of experience helping people buy and sell homes. But this isn’t enough.
The professional you hire should also have experience helping homeowners in the area you want to purchase a home or condominium. Ask for printouts of homes the realtor has helped clients buy or sell over the past six months or so. You need to see verifiable proof of success.
It’s also critical that you find a licensed realtor to help clients buy and sell homes in your area. So, if you’re looking for an upscale home in Missouri, ensure the realtor is licensed to operate in the state.
2. Consider compensation
According to one source, realtors usually charge commissions from 5% to 6%. You can often find real estate agents who charge less than that range. But if you’re selling a home for $400,000 and your agent’s commission is 5%, that’ll work out to a commission of $20,000.
When interviewing agents, ask about what specific services they’ll offer. It’s unwise to choose a realtor solely based on the commission amount. A realtor who charges a commission of 6% might be a better choice than one that charges a commission of 4% based on the services offered.
You’ll want help marketing your property, negotiating the best purchase price, and figuring out all the terms associated with the property transaction. So, when considering realtors, look at both what they charge and what they offer to make an informed decision.
3. Reputation is everything
It’s also important to consider the reputation of different realtors. But how do you best find out how realtors will treat you? The answer is that you look into how they’ve treated past clients. One way to do this is by reading online reviews on third-party websites. See which realtors seem to be getting the most business, find out what home buyers and sellers have to say about them, and look at which realtors are highly recommended and which ones have sketchy reputations.
Another way to get more information is by asking people you know for recommendations and referrals. The chances are good that you know people who’ve bought or sold homes before. So why not ask them who they hired and whether or not they’d recommend their realtors?
After reading reviews and asking for referrals, check out different realtors online. Go to their websites to learn about them. And check out what services they offer and their unique value propositions. Then, after researching, draft up a shortlist and make some calls.
Buying a home is a significant undertaking. But finding the right real estate agent can make the process less daunting and stressful. You might even enjoy the overall process.
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