9 Things to Ask Before Hiring a Real Estate Agent
Choosing a realtor is just one of the many steps involved in buying a house. However, it’s also a decision that will affect you heavily over the course of time you are looking to buy (or even sell) a home. In order to cut headaches down the road and also to get a reasonable expectation of your realtor’s abilities, there are a few things you need to ask potential realtors in advance:
1. How long have they been in the business? Real estate is a profession largely honed by on the job training. Just because someone is new in the business doesn’t make them unqualified, but you need to see sufficient intern experience or at least part time work to get a feel for how knowledgeable your future realtor is.
2. Are they a member of realtor associations such as the National Association of Realtors? Similar to a BBB, this association has standards that individuals must demonstrate and abide by to be members.
3. Do they have access to MLS? The Multiple Listing Service gives agents access to all homes on the market, not just ones through their own agency. For sellers, this means more of a platform to show your house, and for buyers this means more to choose from.
4. What is their availability? Are they someone who drops what they are doing to meet you at a closing? Work on the weekends? Knowing how committed your realtor is to your home search can be deciphered through their availability—learn this beforehand!
5. How long have you been in the area? The Atlanta movers can attest that our metro area is made up of dozens of suburbs, counties and towns. You want someone familiar with Atlanta before you try to have someone learn the ropes with you.
6. Will they show you all the available housing? Similar to the point about MLS access, you want to be sure they aren’t going to strictly show you homes within their agency’s listings. This will limit your options and likely leave you with something you don’t love but will do.
7. Can they give you a rundown of the buying process? Knowing “what steps come when” is a great way to outline the relationship you will have over the next few months. This will also prevent any surprises and lessen the likelihood of last minute hang ups.
8. How many homes do they have under their belt? Selling homes requires skill and charm, and in a troubled market it’s interesting to see how some realtors fare opposed to others. Do they have the edge you need to land the home of your dreams?
9. What’s their M.O. ? Weekly check-ins? Daily emails? Calls over texts? Learn their communication style and realistically compare it to yours. If you’re bad about checking emails, you want someone who will pick up the phone with breaking news.
Best of luck from your friends at the Atlanta movers!