What do you look for in a Realtor?

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April 05 2012 - Hamilton Area
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    Hello
    When talking to a potential realtor, let them tell you what they are going to do to help you find a home.  They should enjoy working with buyers and be willing to put in the time.  You want someone that is going to first meet with you and go through the entire buying process.  Not just give you a list of homes and say "Let's Go".  I have been told many times by clients, that are not first time home buyers, that I gave them more information than their previous agent did.  A realtors job is to give you the knowledge and information you need to make good buying decisions.  There are a lot of steps along the way i.e. qualifying with a lender, deciding what you must have in a home vs what you would like to have, writting an offer, negotions, home inspection, appraisal and settlement.  I would say the most important thing, once you have spoken with a few realtors, is that you must feel comfortable and coneected with them. 
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    April 05 2012
    What should a person look for while conducting research to find the right real estate agent? Good question. This article will answer the question from the opinion of experienced full-time agents. So expect our first answer to direct you to find experienced full-time agents. The rest of this article is less predictable.

    Knowledge, experience, commitment, patience, integrity, and availability are all good assets in the real estate industry. An effective real estate agent has the experience to recommend the right professionals (home inspectors, title companies, soil and septic experts, home improvement contractors, lenders, appraisers, real estate attorneys, water treatment companies, termite inspectors, etc.).  

    Listing agents should be experienced buyers agents, and buyers agents should have experience working as listing agents. Understanding how changing housing market conditions effect contract negotiations can be the difference in ratifying a contract or continuing the home search process for clients attempting to buy a home. As a listing agent understanding market conditions, sales trends, and changing contract concessions in individual markets will help clients get the most for their homes (especially if multiple offers occur).

    An effective agent works full-time (including weekends) and is often a top producer among industry peers. Agents who are engaged in dialog with clients should actively listen to their needs and develop a strategy which serves the best interests of the client. There should be open and honest dialog from the agent to the client(s) about market conditions and trends, and agents should know about upcoming events (i.e. new residential and commercial development, changing school attendance zones, special tax assessments and changing tax rates) in the neighborhoods they serve. Real estate agents should also have a resource directory available for clients to research issues of public safety, education, community services, and transportation alternatives. The subject of transportation alternatives has become the first concern of professionals relocating to Northern Virginia.

    Creating a real estate agent short list should include those with experience listing foreclosures, short sales, and new homes using builder contracts. Once again, the best real estate agents to represent buyers of these transaction types are those who have experience representing the other side of the contract. The short list should also include qualified relocation agents serving programs used by military, government, and corporate relocation clients. Real estate companies contract with relocation companies to represent participating relocation clients. There are performance standards in these contracts which encourage real estate companies to provide their best real estate agents. This should be a key for selecting a good real estate agent. The last qualifier for the short list is knowing current lending practices and rates. Real estate agents should be able to answer financing questions for different loan types and programs including qualifying credit scores, income to debt ratios, required down payments, etc. of standard loans.

    Successful real estate agents must have an effective internet marketing campaign to sell homes. This can be evaluated by examining the methods agents use to market themselves to attract business. Without a strong internet presence it is doubtful individual real estate agents have the knowledge or ability to effectively sell homes and remain in the real estate industry. If you find a real estate agent with a good internet presence, chances are you've found a home sales professional serious about optimizing real estate technology to better serve clients.

    We have determined serious agents have a good internet presence, This should include a website with recommendations by past clients. Real estate agents dedicated to service will also be able furnish additional recommendations upon request. The last method of finding the right real estate agent is to begin reading area real estate blogs. Researching real estate blogs are the best forum to evaluate agents. Real estate blogs should give readers an informed opinion for the level of trade and market knowledge possessed by the author, and determine if the agent will be a good fit to represent their real estate needs.    
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    April 06 2012
    Roxanne,

    That is indeed a great response to the question. I too, like to take the consultative approach and explain the buying process from start to finish. Education of buyers & sellers is what makes a smooth transaction even more efficient. I appreciate your swift response and Look forward to working together one day!
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    April 05 2012
     
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