I was recently in the market for a new home on a succinct timeline (weeks). I met Grace while she was showing an open house and immediately got a good vibe from her.
Home buying is probably the single biggest financial investment for most people. I think honesty, efficiency, and experience go further than any other niceties.
Let's face it, real estate is a jungle and close to pure chaos, an experienced realtor is going to get you further along in the bidding/purchase process. At least that's my thinking.
That's why I went with Grace, she didn't pull any punches and was completely transparent. From my own home buying experience, I think transparency is key. If something isn't great, I expect to hear it's not great before putting an offer on a house. I don't want to find out years later.
If you are blissfully ignorant, Grace will reset your expectations, and I consider Grace's transparency an asset (not a liability) when dealing with real estate...actually pretty anything else in life too.
In terms of finding the home, I think the process is symbiotic ... it's going to be good as the input you feed into it. I cook *a lot*, I need a great kitchen. I prefer to be closer to work (who wants to deal with traffic?). I told Grace and this shifted the the focus. The feedback loop is your friend. Be responsive, be transparent.
Don't take chances with your realtor. You don't want to find yourself post-offer with an unexperienced realtor when every day to close counts. Your ability to enjoy your home is a key part of your life journey. I went with Grace, all positives, no regrets.