Before you start looking for a realtor, you need to understand what representation actually is. Those who want to sell a property may need a specialized seller’s agent. Those who want to buy, however, are looking for a buyer’s agent. As soon as you have signed a contract with one of these agents, they have a legal duty to represent you properly.
Your realtor’s experience is one of the most important things to look into. Usually, those with the most experience tend to deliver the best service. The best ones are the ones who started working before the economic crisis and are still going strong. You do have to ensure they have experience that is relevant to your personal needs. For example, if you are trying to become a property investor, your needs will be very different than if you are looking to downsize after retirement. You also need to know that your realtor understands your demographic and geographical requirements. For example, those who want to purchase a ranch will need a realtor that understands soil conditions and production methods and who can also look into the homestead that comes with the ranch. Should you be interested in purchasing a property that is historic or listed, for instance, you will need the services of someone very different.
If you want to buy a property, do not work with the realtor whom the seller has employed. This is because if you reveal any information that you could use in negotiations, the realtor would be obliged by law to pass that on to the seller as well. In the same manner, if you want to sell, you shouldn’t work with your potential buyer’s realtor either. You should be looking for a realtor that only represents your needs. Start by asking people you know whether they can refer you to a realtor. Alternatively, contact the NAR (National Association of Realtors) to find a realtor. If you work with a realtor registered with the NAR, you will know for sure that they are professional and ethical. Do make sure you speak to several before you decide which one to go with. Explain your needs and ask what they suggest. These conversations can help you determine just how much a realtor knows about a specific neighborhood, house prices and so on. If you want to sell a property, you must find out how well the realtor has performed in the past. Do they usually sell under, on or over the original asking price?
As you can see, with a bit of forward thinking, you should be able to find the right realtor for your needs. It is their goal to ensure you are able to find the home you are looking for. Hence, make sure you only work with a realtor that you believe has your best interests at heart.