The real estate agent you hire to help you buy or sell your home is absolutely instrumental in how quickly you’ll be able to move, how much money you make or pay from your transaction, and how positive your experience will be overall. Just as you’re careful deciding which moving company to hire for your move, so too should you take the right steps to ensure that your home buying or selling experience is a positive one.
Follow our advice to help you partner with a quality, professional and knowledgeable real estate agent:
Ask for Referrals
Real estate agents tend to get most of their business through word-of-mouth referrals. Begin your search by asking your friends, family members, and neighbors for their recommendations. Everybody knows someone who knows a real estate agent. Chances are, those closest to you may know of a great professional who specializes in home buying and selling in your area.
Look at the “Headlining” Companies
Most real estate professionals work in an agency setting. Although an agent doesn’t have to be backed by a recognizable name, it can help to start your search at these companies. Because they are large corporations with a trusted brand, their agents tend to have the right licensing and credentials. Stevens Worldwide Van Lines has national relationships with RE/MAX and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. Clients of these two industry-leading real estate brands gain additional benefits when they move with Stevens or our agents.
Hire a Realtor
There’s a difference between a real estate agent and a Realtor (sometimes more officially referred to as a REALTOR®). A real estate agent is anyone who earns a real estate license in your state, while a Realtor is a real estate agent who is also a member of the National Association of REALTORS, a trade organization for the real estate industry that requires its members to adhere to a strict code of ethics.
Look for Other Certifications
All a real estate agent really needs is a license in order to operate in your area, but you can look for other credentials, as well. Awards, brokerage licenses, the NAR Realtor stamp of approval, GRI (Graduate Realtors Institute), and CRS (Certified Residential Specialist) are all good signs and are usually a great indicator of success.
Ask Sales History
Don’t be afraid to ask for details about the real estate agent’s history and success rate. Sit down and go over all your questions, including their sales rate for the past year, the amount of time they’ve been in business, what their areas of specialty are, and if they have a strong presence in certain geographical locations.
Go Over the Financials
Depending on how much money your home is worth, your real estate agent could be potentially making a large income on the sale or purchase of your house. Don’t be afraid to ask about what is included in this price. Ask if you’ll have to pay anything out of pocket, where their commission will come from, what happens if you decide to switch agents, and any other issues related to finance.
Trust Your Instincts
It’s always a good idea to get along well with your real estate agent. You don’t have to be best friends, but this is the person you’re entrusting your family’s residence to, so it’s good to know you can respect and trust them. Above all else, be comfortable with their method of communication. If they are difficult to get hold of or aren’t as forthcoming as you’d like, it’s usually a good sign you need to shop elsewhere.
Are you anticipating a move in the near future? Let Stevens Worldwide Van Lines help! Stevens has relationships with some of the biggest names in real estate. These relationships benefit real estate clients with added benefits to moving! With over 125 agents across the United States, there is nowhere we won’t move you. Visit our website to request your free, in-home estimate!