Real estate offices and agents are a dime a dozen everywhere. This career field proves to be incredibly rewarding, decade after decade because it allows agents the opportunity to truly help make people's dreams come true. But let's face it, this industry can be somewhat cut throat sometimes and there are those people, not unlike any other career path, that are just in it to make a living instead of genuinely caring about their clients. So how do you pick the right agent?
If you're lucky, you may have a good friend who is a licensed real estate agent and you'll know that they will always be looking out for your best interests and will be diligent on finding you that perfect house. Or you may have already worked with an agent before and you decide to just return to what you know because they got the job done the first time right? For others though, in a sea of agent head shots posted on signs all throughout neighborhoods, it can be overwhelming trying to decide which person to spend the next couple of months of your time with, making one of the biggest purchases of you life.
Here's some advice on where you can start:
1. The easiest way to start sifting through the haystack to find your 'needle' is to start looking online for reviews of all of the local agents. Read the good AND the bad. Take into account how many people have actually taken the time to review that agent and how the clients felt with their overall experience throughout the entire process.
2. Look for open houses in the area, even if you aren't necessarily interested in that particular house, you will be able to meet the agent in person and feel out their personality and their enthusiasm, or lack there of.
3. Ask your potential agents questions. See how knowledgeable they are in all aspects of the home buying process. How confident they are about the people recommend as their loan officers, inspectors, escrow holders, etc. Having an agent with a bigger sphere of influence with all of the tools you are going to need tends to make you feel more comfortable.
4. Buying a house is a huge deal. You want to feel like you aren't just a number, or a paycheck to someone. You want to feel like your agent is going to work hard for you to get you in the right home. That they are going to keep you informed and explain everything that is happening along the way. You should be able to feel like you and your salesperson "click" and that you can trust them and their advice.
Making such a life altering purchase is already scary enough, no one wants to feel left in the dark or neglected. People want to know that they are just as much of a priority as every other person regardless of how big or small their budget is. At the end of the day, as cliche as it might sound, just go with your gut decision. Sometimes the best experiences in life are made with that little feeling rooted deep within your conscious.
Happy house hunting!!!