Once you have made the decision to buy or sell a home, one of the first things you should do is start searching for a real estate agent. It’s important to choose your Realtor carefully, since this person will serve as your advocate throughout the process. Here are seven questions to ask any Realtor before hiring them to represent you:
1) How long have you been in real estate? Typically, the longer a Realtor has been on the job, the more experience they have. Experience is not a guarantee of skill, but knowing whether your agent is brand new to real estate or a seasoned veteran will give you a general idea of their background and skill set.
2) How many deals have you closed this year? If an agent has completed several transactions, that’s usually a sign of good experience. Another similar question to ask is how many clients the agent is currently working with. Both of these queries can provide further insight into the agent’s real estate experience. Busier agents are often the most efficient and skillful. However, an agent with too many clients could leave you lost in the shuffle.
3) Have you worked in this neighborhood/area before? An agent who is already familiar with the area around your home is in touch with the local market and knows what it takes to successfully sell a home there. If you’re a buyer, an agent with in-depth knowledge of the city or neighborhood you’re moving to can show you homes you may not have considered before.
4) How will you communicate with me? Communication is an essential part of the real estate process. A flexible agent will make themselves available to you as often as you need. This is also the time to discuss your preferred method of communication, whether it’s text, phone, or email.
5) What is your marketing strategy? When you’re selling your home, bringing buyers to the door is an important step. Look for an agent who has a proven marketing strategy driven to attract buyers. Agents today should post your listing online, since that’s where 90% of buyers begin their home search. Professional photos, virtual tours, signs, flyers, open houses, and social media outreach are all positive marketing strategies to look for.
6) What do you know about lenders, home inspectors, etc? An agent who has established relationships with important players in the buying or selling process is an agent worth considering. Agents should especially be able to provide a recommendation for a trusted, local lender if you’re buying a home.
7) Do you have any references? Take time to reach out to your Realtor’s previous clients. Ask about the agent’s work ethic, communication style, and overall performance. Positive reviews from these clients can give you the reassurance you need to make your final decision.
Are you on the hunt for an agent to help you buy or sell an Austin home? Our agents are Austin area experts and eager to guide you through the home buying or selling process. Check out our full roster of experienced agents and office staff on our Meet the Team page. If you have any questions about our team or Austin real estate in general, contact us today!