Step 1 of the Home Buying Process: The Real Estate Agent
So you've decided to buy a home. Now what?
Step 1 of the home-buying process is a very important step that many home buyers take for granted. If you choose wisely, you will have a great buying experience.
Step 1 of the Home Buying Process:
Find a Good Knowledgeable Real Estate Agent
Your agent will be an asset to you. They will be your eyes and ears in the home buying process. Working with the right real estate agent will make all the difference on how your home buying process goes. They will listen to you and keep you informed of homes that may work for you. New homes are constantly being listed daily. Good agents know what's on the market and always have their eyes peeled for new listings.
A transaction can go south if you don't have someone that's willing to stand up for you and negotiate on your behalf. A knowledgeable real estate agent will help you navigate through the process with a sense of ease. The right agent will represent you and educate you while keeping your needs front and center.
Tips on Picking a Good Real Estate Agent
You want to pick an agent who is also a REALTOR®. Agents that are also realtors are more invested in their business and education. You can also look for designations, awards, the length of time in the business. Are they also a real estate broker or broker associate? Work with an agent who goes the extra mile in obtaining more education and experience to keep their skills up to date. These will be the best agents to promote your best interest.
Are they active in the community? If so they'll be more familiar with the different neighborhoods, schools, and businesses. If you are new to the area you will need help with community information.
Get a referral from a friend, co-worker or relative. Someone you know has purchased a home and just loves their real estate agent. Maybe that agent will be a good fit for you.
Red Flags That You May Be Working With the Wrong Agent
- They never answer your phone calls. (because they paint during the day and do real estate on the side) Real estate agents are very busy people; however, someone who wants your business should answer you calls eventually. An agent may be too busy to work with you. It’s better to find this out in the beginning this way you can keep searching.
- Always slow to respond to your inquiries. It should not take two days for a return phone call or email. Actually, it should not take one day. Find an agent with a quick response time.
- Show you homes that don't fit any of your criteria. If you've told them, you need four bedrooms and all the homes they show you or email you have three bedrooms. Now that's a problem.
- You just don't feel like they are interested in helping you. Sometimes people just don't work well with other personalities. Not all agents have high energy. You choose your agent so make sure they are a fit with your personality. Make sure you feel comfortable with them. Remember you will be working closely with your agent until move in day!
- You ask questions and the agent never has an answer. Any knowledgeable agent should be able to answer most of your questions and concerns. If it’s out of their wheelhouse they can point you in the right direction. For instance, you may have legal questions for an attorney or construction questions that can be answered by a builder. A good real estate agent can get your questions answered in a timely manner.
Picking a good real estate agent is crucial when buying a home. They will guide you step by step through the entire process. When you are purchasing the biggest investment of your life make sure you are using a qualified real estate agent. Feel free to interview a few agents if you so choose before you sign on the dotted line. Hopefully, these tips will help you get started. Have fun and put your mind at ease. Work with the right real estate agent and soon you will be enjoying your new home.
© 2016 Michelle McLaughlin
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