With the booming number of home-selling sites popping up every day, and Google able to translate any house-speak that’s needed, a lot of people are considering forgoing realtors when buying homes. Unfortunately, this puts them at risk since most people aren’t educated on the market and on how they can get the best price when buying or selling.
If you want to buy or sell a home, and avoid common pitfalls, here’s what you’ll need to do to get an all-star realtor.
Compare Online Reviews
A great thing about the internet is that you can get reviews of anything and anyone. People are quick to put their opinions out there to encourage, or scare away, potential clients for realtors. Although not every review is useful, many of them together can be an excellent tool to help you know what to expect.
Pay attention to how quickly people say they were able to find a home, how much commission they paid, and how recently they worked with these realtors. Be careful not to go through a realtor’s site for these reviews, because those can often be biased or chosen because they reflect well on the realtor.
Ask for Referrals
Like the internet, you have a great resource in your social circle. Ask any of your friends who have recently bought homes if they’d recommend their realtors. You probably won’t get as many reviews as you do on the internet, but these are the opinions of people you know and trust. Listen to them about their experiences and consider if you’d want those for yourself.
If you don’t have friends have bought homes, ask to see if any of their relatives or friends have. Word of mouth is powerful, and a useful, honest review from someone you know in real life is worth ten times what a stranger’s opinion online would be.
Make a list of four to five realtors you’re heavily considering and contact them. Give them some information on what you’d be looking for, and ask for a quote of how much they’d want as their commission for whatever potential house you’d buy.
This step will help you weed out which realtors you don’t want, or can’t afford, and can hopefully leave you with just one or two actual options. If you’re selling a house, ask them, “how much is my house worth,” and how quickly they think they’d be able to sell it.
Make It Clear What You Want
The decision isn’t all yours; realtors can pick and choose which clients they want to serve. Lay down what you’re looking for in a house, and from them professionally, and be clear on a timeline. Any realtor worth their salt can offer you most of the reasonable things you ask for and may be able to work with you on how much of a commission they’ll take.
Realtors are professionals who have been educated and well trained in their fields, and trusting them can give you more power to focus on your future home.