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How to Find a Good Realtor

Purchasing a new house calls for some serious prep work, from cleaning up your credit history to saving enough money to make a down payment. But that’s not even all. You also want an ally who will be there to lead you to homes you’ll absolutely love, find the best possible mortgage for you, and just basically help you through this normally complicated process. That’s where the role of a real estate broker or agent makes a difference.

The following are pointers that can help you find a good realtor:

Understand what different titles mean.

The first thing you may notice as you try to get some help with buying properties is that professionals in the industry can use different titles, such as agent, broker, Realtor(R), etc. Are they all but one and the same? Of course not! A real estate agent is someone who has earned a license to sell real estate property, where the requirements typically include taking 100+ hours of course work and passing a test administered by the state. A real estate broker is a professional who has taken advanced studies and can hire agents working under them. A Realtor may be an agent or a broker who is a National Association of Realtors(R) member. Realtors keep to a strict code of ethics dictating how they must treat their client. Consider it extra assurance that they’re serious about promoting your cause.

Don’t limit yourself to one prospective real estate broker or agent.

The NAR says at least 66% of first-time buyers contacted only one real estate broker, and that a wrong practice. Besides, how can you be certain that you made a good choice if you didn’t even have choices in the first place? Any extra work you do today can really pay off in the near future. Explore at least two or three agents, compare them and choose the best.

Personally interview your prospective agents.

This is a crucial step that you shouldn’t skip. And during the interview, make sure you ask about the following:

Specific Local Knowledge and Experience

You should look for a seasoned agent–and even if they don’t need decades of experience, they can be risky if they only have up to two years. A freshly licensed agent, on the other hand, shouldn’t be instantly erased from your list of prospects if they have been residing in your chosen area for a long time. When making a decision, find a balance between overall experience and local experience.

Alone with with a Group?

If an agent works with a team, you can expect faster response times and greater attention. This is clearly because people will be helping each other for the same task, such as making a realtor marketing plan.

Agent Schedule

Finally, as much as possible, choose a full-time agent to ensure that availability will not be an issue. If you can only see houses during their convenient time, you could be missing out on many good ones. Availability is particularly important if you want to buy a house as soon as possible.