In the neighborhood where I primarily sell homes in Land Park, it's not uncommon to find agents putting up sign riders on their sign posts that announce to passersby that they are an area specialist. The problem is some of those agents have never before taken a listing in Land Park and have never sold a home in Land Park. I call that dishonest marketing.
If I were a seller or buyer, I would not want to work with an agent who is lying to me. A consumer might wonder what else the agent is lying about. Typically, there are three distinct lies an agent will tell.
For example, they might puff their production and try to make you believe they have sold a lot of homes, when maybe they sell 3 homes a year. That breaks down to one home every four months, which is pretty lousy. So, how can you tell if the agent is telling you the truth or lying to you? Don't rely on an agent's pretty web site because many of those web sites are misleading, filled with bells and whistles and a complete fabrication of facts. Every agent can't be number one in real estate, for instance.
Agents call it marketing. I call it misrepresentation and lying.
You can look up information about your agent online.
Information about an agent's real estate license is readily available online in most states, and you can obtain this data from your state's licensing division. For example, in California, real estate agents are licensed by The Department of Real Estate. On the home page of that web site is a button for "real estate license lookup." If you enter the last name of the agent, records of all the agents with that last name and respective cities will appear. If you can't find the agent you are looking for, perhaps that agent has made up an alias or maybe that agent isn't licensed at all.
The DRE's web site will tell you when the agent was first licensed, so you can determine how long the agent has been in the business. (You can also look at the agent's real estate license number to figure out whether the agent is newer. Licenses that begin with a series of zeros means the agent has been in the business for at least 20 years or more.) The site will also tell if you the agent has completed the necessary educational requirements and whether any disciplinary action has been filed against the agent, including whether the license has expired. It's very revealing.
What else could your agent be lying to you about? Read more about the Top Three Lies Told By Real Estate Agents.
Photo: Big Stock Photo
Certified HAFA Specialist
Sacramento Real Estate Listings
Elizabeth Weintraub is an author, home buying columnist for About.com, a Land Park resident, and a Land Park real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown and East Sacramento. Weintraub is also a Sacramento Short Sale agent who lists and successfully sells short sales throughout the four-county Sacramento area. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put 35 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at Lyon Real Estate. DRE License # 00697006.
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Lyon Real Estate is not associated with the government, and our service is not approved by the government or your lender. Even if you accept this offer and use our service, your lender may not agree to change your loan. Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of Lyon Real Estate. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice. It could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to elizabethweintraub.com.