How to choose the person who is going to represent you on one of the biggest financial transactions of your life?
I have been amazed throughout my career as a realtor, at the different ways people find us. I guess what amazes me is the casualness in which a lot of people pick their realtors such a calling a sign, calling a company and speaking with whoever happens to be answering the phone at that moment or responding to an ad written by that one and same person. So the question I ask, is why work with a realtor at all?
A good realtor can help you navigate through the pitfalls of real estate and protect you from a lot of common (or uncommon) problems as well as advocate on your behalf in many ways. Your realtor can help you determine your buying power and refer you to a qualified lender (they know many lenders). They also have many resources that can assist you in your home search. They can provide objective information about the market, negotiate on your behalf, provide due diligence during the evaluation of the property, manage the transaction and guide you through the closing process. And they are still there as a resource after closing!
Choose wisely! Ask them about their experience and their background. Ask them to tell you about their market area and expertise. Ask them about their buyer and seller strategies. Ask them their level of technology.
The entry point for my profession is not very high. It is very easy to get a real estate license. But there are a lot of us out there who are working full time, constantly updating our knowledge about the market and our profession, dedicated to doing the best for our clients. Find us! Get a referral (or two). Ask for references. Do your homework.
Do you know the difference between a realtor and a real estate agent (i.e. sales associate)?