Buying a home isn’t easy, and it’s one of the most important financial choices you’ll ever make. When you’re ready to buy, it’s important to find an experienced real estate agent to help you through the process.
There are a lot of real estate agents who advertise online, in newspapers, and with yard signs. But there are so many professionals to choose from that it can be hard to find the right one. Follow these tips on how to find a real estate agent to make sure you hire the right person for your purchase. If you looking for property in Cincinnati then Cincinnati Real Estate is the best choice for you. Commercial Real Estate best place to find a Real Estate firm.
A step-by-step guide on how to find an agent
- First, get preapproved for a mortgage
- Ask your friends and family for recommendations.
- Look into possible candidates
- Speak with at least three realtors
- Ask for references and call them.
- Trust your instincts.
- Read your contract carefully.
First, get preapproved for a mortgage
People who want to buy a home sometimes hire a real estate agent and start looking for a home
before they talk to a mortgage lender. But you should first talk to a lender to find out how much you
When you get pre-approved for a mortgage, you find out how much you can borrow and if there are
any problems that need to be fixed right away. This helps you only look at homes in your price range.
It will also show real estate agents and sellers that you are a serious buyer. In a market as
competitive as the one we have now, sellers won’t even look at your offer without a preapproval
Ask your friends and family for recommendations.
Ask people you know if they can recommend a good real estate agent they have worked with. You
should try to find someone who has worked with clients like you before. For example, the needs of a
first-time buyer are different from those of a repeat buyer or a homeowner who wants to move into
a smaller home.
Look for a real estate agent who has the word “Realtor” in front of their name. That means they are
a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and have agreed to follow the group’s code
of ethics. Some Realtors also have certifications that show they’ve been trained in a certain area of
real estate. Some designations include:
CRS (Certified Residential Specialist): Completed extra training in how to deal with residential real
ABR (Accredited Buyer’s Representative): Completed extra training in representing buyers in
SRES (Seniors Real Estate Specialist): Completed training to help people 50 and older buy and sell
Buyer’s agents vs. seller’s agents
Learn the difference between a buyer’s agent and a seller’s agent, as well. In a real estate
transaction, a buyer’s agent works for the buyer, while a seller’s agent, also called a listing agent,
works for the seller. This person is in charge of pricing and marketing the home, as well as
negotiating the terms of the sale.
Dual agency means that a single real estate agent can sometimes act as the agent for both parties.
Some states don’t allow dual agency, and there are some risks that come with it, so keep this in mind
if you’re thinking about agreeing to it.
You might also meet an agent who acts as a referral agent, which means that for a fee, the agent
sends leads to other agents.
Look into possible candidates
Start by looking at what an agent has online. Check the agent’s website and accounts on social
media. Check out what people say about them online, too. Don’t worry about one or two bad
reviews, but a lot of them could be a sign that something is wrong.
Check with your state’s real estate regulator to see if the agent you’re thinking about is licensed and
if they have ever been in trouble. Check the website of your local Better Business Bureau to see if
they have any complaints about the people you are interviewing.
While you’re doing your research to find the right real estate agent, it’s a good idea to make a list of
what you want and need in a home.
Speak with at least three realtors
During an interview, you can get a feel for the agent’s style and level of experience. In the end, you
want to find someone who knows the area well and who understands your budget and needs.
Katherine Hutt, president and founder of Nautilus Communications and former chief
communications officer for the Better Business Bureau, says, “See how polished and professional
their proposal is.” “The harder they work on a presentation for you, the harder they’ll work on
presentations for you when they work for you. You need someone who knows a lot.”
Ask them how long they’ve been a real estate agent, how many clients they have now, and how long
it usually takes for them to help a buyer close on a home. Also, it’s a good idea to ask what price
range and neighborhoods they usually help their buyers find, how they help buyers stay
competitive in this market, and what their commission fees are.
During interviews, you can also find out how the agent prefers to be reached and when they are
free. For example, if you prefer texting and plan to look at homes after work during the week, you’ll
want an agent who’s fine with that.
Ask for references and follow up on them
Ask the agents you’re thinking about to tell you about the homes they’ve listed and sold in the last
year and give you the contact information for at least a few of their recent clients. Call those clients
to find out how they felt about the process and what kind of help the agent gave them throughout,
including during the negotiations. Ask them if they would hire that agent again the next time they
bought or sold a home.
Trust your instincts
The agent’s ability to guide you through the process is just as important as their knowledge and
experience. Above all, choose an agent you can trust and feel comfortable with if things get rough
on the way to closing.
Herman Chan, an associate broker and Realtor with Golden Gate Sotheby’s International Realty in
Berkeley, California, says, “It’s just like dating; sometimes it all comes down to chemistry.” “If
everything checks out but you just don’t get along with that person, don’t go with them. There are
many other real estate agents who would be happy to help you and might be a better fit for your
Read your contract carefully.
Once you choose an agent, your contract should spell out all the terms you’ve agreed to, including
the real estate commission. Usually, the seller pays 6% of the home’s selling price in real estate
commissions, with half going to the seller’s agent and the other half to the buyer’s agent. The
commission rate is often negotiable, though, and an analysis by EffectiveAgents found that the
average commission is just under 6%.
Another thing to think about is how long the contract itself is. Try to get a contract that lasts no
more than six months. The NAR says that in a seller’s market like the one we have now, it can take
20 days or less to sell a home. If you haven’t found the home you want after a few months, it’s best
to keep your options open.
Why it matters to find the right real estate agent
In today’s housing market, which is very competitive, having the right real estate agent can make a big difference. You want to work with someone you can trust and who makes you feel at ease and
who has your best interests in mind as they guide you through the process. The more familiar a
buyer’s agent is with an area, the more likely it is that they can help you find the right property at
the right price, on time, and within your budget.