Whether you are a buyer or seller, here are some ways you can find out more about the agent before you hire:
Check the licensing:
States have boards that discipline and license real estate agents in a particular state. Check if the person is licensed or not and if there’s any disciplinary actions on complaints. Search information posted online can also be referred.
Converse with recent clients:
Ask the agent to provide a list of what has been sold and listed in the past few years along with the contract information.
Select the winner:
Please check whether the agent has enough credibility or not. If the person has won any sort of award or recognition or designation, then nothing like it.
Research on how long the agent has been in this field:
How long the agent has been working can be easily found out either from the state licensing authority or from the agent himself/herself.
A couple of years indicate the person is learning on you and that’s not recommended.
After all what you might be looking for is someone who’s actively engaged in a particular area with a certain price range. You might also want to know what kind of market presence they have and what kind of knowledge they can demonstrate.
Inquire about other houses for sale nearby:
A good agent is supposed to have a fair idea about other area properties that are available. You can test the person by mentioning a house in your area that’s been sold recently all is up for sale. If the agent is able to give you at least a few details, that means he or she actually knows the area well.
Check out the current listings:
There are 2 ways to do that.
One, the agency’s own site. Secondly, website(s) that might compile the properties under the ‘Multiple Listing Service’ into a searchable online database.
The majority of the buyers starts their search on the internet. Obviously you would want an agent who is able to use that tool effectively.
One can also check out on how closely the agent’s listing(s) mirror the property that you want to sell or buy. You can also check whether they are in the same area, has a similar price range and whether the agent has adequate listing(s) that indicate a healthy business? However, not so many that you become just a number for that person.
Also, given below are a few red flags to watch for choosing a real estate agent:
*The agent proposes a higher price for the property.
*Is a relative.
*Charges a lower commission.
*Is engaged in real estate as a part timer.
*Doesn’t know the real estate landscape of the neighborhood very well.
*Doesn’t usually deal with the type of property you are looking at.
*The agent’s face appears on online listing(s).
*Doesn’t usually work in the price range you prefer.
*Is a poor negotiator and is unable to keep up with transaction details properly.
Real estate agents are an essential part of a property deal. So, PLEASE DO NOT rush through the process.