Choosing a Real Estate Agent

Selecting a real estate agent can be an overwhelming and even confusing process. This is particularly true for those who have never sold or purchased a home in the past. After all, if you have no experience in this field, it is difficult to know what to look for in a real estate agent. By taking a few simple steps, however, you will quickly narrow down your choices and will be sure to have a great real estate agent in your corner.

Step #1: Take a Drive Through the Neighborhood

One way to learn more about the real estate agents who work in your area is to drive through the neighborhood to look at signs – an effective method for Denver or Chevy Chase real estate just the same. Not only will this help you learn more about which agents have experience in your particular neighborhood, but it will also allow you to get an idea of how successful these agents are. If it takes months for a SOLD sign to go up on the homes being sold by a particular agent, chances are that this is not a good agent to hire. Visiting open houses and watching the agent interact with the people who come to the open house will also give you a good idea of how the agent operates.

Step #2: Look for References

If you have any friends or family members who have recently bought or sold a home, it is always a good idea to ask them about their experiences with their real estate agents. If you don’t know someone with a recent experience, however, you can still learn from the experiences of others by turning to the Internet. By reading through agent ratings and reviews, you can learn more about the experiences that other people had with a particular agent. After driving through the neighborhood and becoming familiar with a few local agents, you should have plenty of names to research.

Step #3: Interview Several Agents

After narrowing down your choices, it is a good idea to interview at least three agents before deciding which one you will hire. In addition to finding an agent who is knowledgeable about your market and who is an expert in technicalities such as titles and financing, you want to hire someone who you feel comfortable with. To get a better idea of the skills and strategies the real estate agent uses, you should ask questions such as:

– How many homes have you bought or sold over the past year?
– What kind of experience do you have buying and selling homes in my neighborhood?
– What kind of marketing strategies do you plan to use?
– How many homes should I expect to see before finding the right one?
– How are multiple offers handled?

You should also learn more about the agent’s communication methods. If the agent prefers to use email and you are more of a telephone person, your communication methods may not jive. Similarly, if you like to get quick responses to your questions, you may be quite unhappy with someone who typically provides updates on a bi-weekly basis.

By taking these three simple steps, you will be able to easily select the right real estate agent to suit your individual needs.

About The Author – Kevin Koitz is a Washington DC native & Realtor and specializes in Washington DC real estate.