Hiring a real estate agent to handle your property seems to be the new normal. Selling or buying a property involves a great deal of effort and most homeowners (or intending buyers) realize that it is far better to hand over the decision to a professional while they sit in the background and await the results. A research finding by the National Association of Realtors found out that as much as 89% of buyers and sellers involved an agent in the process. That’s a lot. If you are looking to hire one also, there are a few things you must consider before you go ahead to make that hire. We cover a few below
Who is a Real Estate Agent?
A real estate agent is a licensed professional who brings together property buyers and sellers in the conduct of a real estate transaction. Usually, the agent receives a commission for his service based on an agreed percentage of the purchase price of the property making their income depend on their ability to negotiate a good deal for the home seller. This commission varies from state to state.
How to Hire a Real Estate Agent
A real estate agent can either make your property sale/acquisition memorable or miserable. As such, it is important to make the following considerations before hiring an agent.
1. Find an agent who knows the area:
An agent may be good at his work yet be a terrible choice for you if he lacks knowledge about your local area. He needs to know about what kinds of houses are selling, the asking prices for those houses, whether the trend is towards a buyers’ market or a sellers’ market, etc. This knowledge will help him in setting a reasonable expectation for you and also help drive the house sale. Consider carefully the agents available in your area instead of just making a general search. For example, if you stay in Brisbane, you could search for the best agents in Brisbane on a reputable agent listing website. That way, you know any of the agents you find will be one who knows your area well enough.
2. Consider multiple agents:
The first agent your search yields is not necessarily the best there is neither is the best talker necessarily going to make the best deal for you or work well with you. Before hiring an agent, make sure to compare available agents to see which apart from having local knowledge of your area will suit your particular needs in terms of availability, experience with your kind of property, manner of approach, and marketing strategy. Get an idea about how much real estate agents do charge before the final interview.
3. Prepare for the interview:
When you’ve narrowed down your list of agents to a few, then it is time to have a sit-down with them to discuss your actual intention and to finalize choosing your agent. You can do this either over the phone or schedule a physical meeting with the agent at this office. Be sure you ask questions relating to expertise, experience level, success rates, marketing strategy, documentation process. It is also a good practice to ask the agent to provide you with a list of people he has worked with in the past seeing as these references can help you better make an informed decision.
When all is done
When all is said and done, understand that your best bet will be to hire someone who has vast knowledge about the property market in your local area, has experience with negotiating good deals, does not have too much on his plate (in terms of other properties), is relatable and leaves you feeling like you are in good hands.