Let's face it, finding a Realtor is not an easy task. At least finding one you're comfortable with, TRUST and LIKE. Consumers, it's vital to have a REALTOR in your corner who is knowledgeable about the AREA you want to live.You want a Realtor who KNOWS HOW TO NEGOTIATE. For buyers; to get YOU the best bang for your buck. Sellers; to get you the best price for your property. Buyers and sellers: You want a Realtor who is HONEST, ETHICAL and one YOU can TRUST--and DO trust. Anyone less, you need to say NEXT.
We (Realtors) still have a stigma to overcome. Many consumers still look as us with that Ah, you're nothing more than a used car salesman, look. In some cases, that may be true. This is not a perfect world, nor a perfect business. There are bad apples in all different careers and positions.
Long before I became a Realtor (and before the Internet), I found my Realtor by going to Open Houses. That way, I didn't feel "trapped" to use this person if I didn't feel a bond or trust. If they were pushy, I could run for the hills. I have a great gut instinct--most of the time--and use it OFTEN.
Nowadays, the Internet is where consumers--90%--begin searching for homes and a Realtor. You look at OUR pictures FIRST! (That being said, I AM going to be getting a new one). You read our bio/profile. Depending on the person doing the searching, our photo and bio can be a turn off. First impression is important, be it on or off the World Wide Web. Keep in mind, however, it is difficult to express yourself on the Internet. Even in e-mails, quite often, we may come across completely different than what we were intending to sound like.
A couple of tips to start your search for a REALTOR:
- Begin your search on the Internet in the area you want to live.
- Check out Realtors' PROFILE/BIO. What does it tell YOU about that person?
- How long have they been in business--and lived in the area you're searching?
- Don't get stuck on the word "Expert." It is used loosely in R.E.
- When you feel comfortable, shoot off an E-MAIL ...if you don't want to call.
- See how long it takes the Realtor to get back to you--very important!
- Drive around on weekends and pop in Open Houses.
- When you do find a Realtor you like, and feel a connection with, STICK with him/her.
- You can find a Realtor on California Association of Realtors
Consumers, don't toss all of us in the same apple barrel. Because there are thousands and thousands of good Realtors out there. I KNOW. I am one and I can honestly say I know many others.
Find a professional Realtor you feel safe with and relax. Let them guide you through the process.