Tips on How to Pick the Right Realtor
As a consumer, it is very important to pick the right Realtor to assist you in buying or selling your real estate property. Most of the time, a consumer picks the Realtor through one of the following ways:
- From a “For Sale” sign in front of the house (writing down the phone number to call the Realtor)
- Open house
- Referral from a friend or a family member
- TV or billboard advertisements
- Flyers in the mail
All of these methods are just fine as long as you know what questions to ask the Realtor. It is very important to interview the Realtor and ask about his experience in the Real Estate industry. You should be familiar with his most recent sales and references or testimonials from his past clients. If he can provide all of these, then you’ll be confident that he may have a good track record.
You also need to know if your Realtor is a member of the National Association of Realtors. I wouldn’t recommend hiring an agent who is not a Realtor. Meanwhile, an agent is simply someone who passed his state exam – that’s it. If you are going to sell real estate full time, it is extremely important to become a Realtor. There is about a $1000/yearly fee to belong to organizations, plus monthly and quarterly fees.
As a Realtor, I have many benefits that help the consumer that an agent cannot provide. I also have a special key to open all homes listed for sale by REALTOR®. Agents have no access to all these properties. As a Realtor, I can advertise my listings on Realtor.com. These are only some of the benefits, there are more. National Association of Realtors is one of the strongest lobbyists in Washington, DC. We are over 1 million members, strong and growing. We fight for the rights of homeowners, homeownership, mortgage, eminent domain, right to the private property ownership, and many other issues that affect the homeowners. As Realtors, we have to abide by the rules, regulations and ethic standards set by the National Association of Realtors. That is above and beyond what is required by the state.
You need a Realtor who is full-time, not a part-timer on the weekends or evenings. A full-time Realtor should know all aspects of the real estate market and must be updated with information and changing rules in the housing market. As a consumer, you should interview at least 3 Realtors to find the best one who fits your needs and personality. Your Realtor must listen to your needs. God gave us two ears and a mouth, we should be listening twice as much as talking. By listening, you will know a person’s wants and needs. A Realtor must be able to solve your situation. He must be fast, efficient and most cost-effective for a full satisfaction. The bottom line for you is to get your home sold, period!
As a consumer, you need to learn your Realtor’s strategy. How does he plan on helping you in the sale? What type of tools does he have to assist you in selling your home?
All Realtors have an access to the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). We all have websites and flyers. We all hold open houses, Realtors’ tours, office tours, etc. To make a choice, you need to ask your potential Realtor these questions:
- What makes you unique and different from all the other Realtors in the area?
- What kind of strategy do you have to sell my home?
You must get to know your Realtor better. Find out about his online presence. Is he on social media websites? Does he own and use a smartphone? Does he email, text and call his clients? Does he blog? Does he advertise online? Does his name give you online results? Check his number of hits on top real estate websites like Zillow.com, Trulia.com and Realtor.com. If yes, how often? Do your own research and see if there are any complaints against the Realtor.
Other questions that may help you decide are:
- Is he up-to-date on the latest technology?
- Does he have professional videos on YouTube?
- Does he have a marketing person, or does he work solo?
- How many members are in his team?
- Does he have an assistant?
- Is he efficient in uploading properties online?
- Is he reachable through email, text or phone? What’s the best way to reach him?
- Does he mail out flyers in the neighborhood?
- What is his strategy to bring in more buyers?
- Does he have a personalized brochure?
- Does he have marketing materials ready to go within hours of listing the property?
- What is his marketing budget for each listing?
- How much of his gross income goes toward marketing each year?
A good Realtor should be able to answer these questions efficiently and with full confidence. The next time you plan on investing in the biggest investment of your life, I hope that this article will be helpful.