Buying a home can be a big task if you’re not familiar with the market. Finding a compatible agent takes some of the work out of finding and purchasing your house. If you’re considering working with a professional for your transaction, you should visit with at least three before choosing. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Knowing these ten important things to ask prospective agents can help you make your decision.
The first thing you should find out is their professional experience. Ask if they handle property purchases and sales full-time or part-time. Ask if he or she is a member of the national organization that governs agents and outlines a code of ethics. Finally, get an idea of how much experience each of your prospects has.
With all the technology we have access to, many companies and individuals have information on the web. Ask if they have a website and the type of information they present. This can be useful in answering basic questions you have later.
Another necessary aspect of your future realty relationship is communication. Make sure your potential agents each have a plan for keeping you informed. Knowing what is going on during your search for a home and a subsequent transaction is of the highest importance.
Seeing the process through can be an intense job. Ask if the agent has a staff that helps out. If there is a team, find out what each person is responsible for. It won’t help to get confused or lost in the shuffle of forms, paperwork and finances.
In the wide world of residential realty, there are a variety of properties up for sale. Some agencies will only show you their company’s listings. Sometimes there are incentives for selling company properties. If these policies are in effect, it may do two things. First, it may affect the agent fee you pay. Second, it may limit the houses you are shown. It’s best to ask about such a policy and decide what’s best for you.
Next, you’ll want to consider representation. Will the agent be solely representing you or will they be representing the seller as well? Whichever way this presents itself, get it in writing. You don’t want any conflicts of interest to disrupt your transaction at any point.
Something else you must consider is payment of any professional fees. Ask your potential realty specialists how they get paid. Find out how the fees are set up and get it in writing. Again, with the policy in writing, you know what to expect.
It may not seem important, but how each candidate negotiates is part of the decision process. Learn about any distinguishing qualities they possess and how it sets them apart from the rest. Remember, the choice is yours and you want to work with an effective representative.
Like anyone interviewing for a position, your agent should have good references. In the case of real estate, they will be clients. Ask if you can contact some past clients to get an idea of customer satisfaction.
Finally, inquire as to whether the company or agent has a performance guarantee. This sort of guarantee allows you to end your association if you find the service unsatisfactory. Keep in mind, however, that you may not find anyone that offers a performance guarantee.
Asking questions and checking your options allows you to make an informed decision. Buying a home is a serious endeavor. Go in prepared and the process will be easier.