Thinking About Buying or Selling A House? 5 Questions to Ask an Agent

Real Estate Agent with Calling Boise Home AB45481

Thinking about buying or selling a house? 5 Questions to ask an agent? 

Do You Have A Friend in the Real Estate Business?  I hear that a lot, "I have a friend in the real estate business."  Often times people think that because they have a friend in the business this means that magically they will get a good deal or some sort of special privileges.

In some cases this is true. It has been my experience unfortunaley, that isn't always the case.  If you have someone in mind or even if you don't, before selecting a real estate agent to help you, I would ask them a few questions. After all this is probably the biggest investment you will ever make in your life.

Questions to ask your agent?

1. Are you in the real estate business full time?Questions
          This is especially important because agents who aren't in the business full time can't keep up to speed on the industry changes that are happening every day.  It may also mean that they have another job that is taking away from the time needed to successfully negotiate on your behalf, oversee your transactional details and the ability to consult you on the details of the transaction.  In your transaction there can be as many as 100 pieces of paper requiring signatures and initials, hundreds of phone calls and emails with the many entities involved in your transaction including the title company, pest inspectors, home inspectors, lenders, banks, appraisers, CPA's, etc.  When is your agent going to take care of you? ONE mistake could cost you thousands of dollars when buying or selling a house.

2. Are you a REALTOR®?
          Why is this important? Because REALTORS® are community supporters. They are active spokespeople for many local agencies.  They are held to a strict code of ethics and must abide by a set of professional principles to serve their clients fairly. REALTORS® provide due diligence in evaluating properties. REALTORS® are also expected to maintain high levels of industry knowledge.  You can visit the website for more information on why you should work with a REALTOR®.

3. Do you have any designations or special trainings?
          Because the real estate industry is changing daily it is important that the person you choose to help you is educated in the real estate market. Designations, or the abbreviations behind someones name, may not mean a lot to you.  It does mean, however, that the agent has spent their time and money to become more knowledgeable and to help you make informed decisions.

4. What can you do for me that is different from the other people I may interview?
          Every agent should say they will do a Competitive Market Analysis of your home, market your home with a sign, flyers and Internet advertising, input the listing into the multiple listing services, hold open houses, etc.  That's great but what else are they going to do?

5.  Can you send me some information about you and your company?
           See how long it takes you to get the information you requested.  This should be a good indicator of how efficiently they are going to handle the responsibility of the sale or purchase of your home.  You can also get a good idea of how professional they are by the materials that they provide.

Please, when you are thinking about buying or selling a house, consult a REALTOR® and ask your questions!


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Comments (4)

Judy Dixon - Las Vegas, NV

Nice informative article.. keep it up.

Dec 10, 2009 07:37 PM
Maria Marriott
Executive Properties - Roseville, CA
Realtor -

Debbie: Nice article and very true too. I believe it's important to emphasize to the consumer how crucial is to make sure they have the right agent. So many times consumers don't take the time to learn more about an agent just to find out that they don't have their best interest in mind. Thanks for the post.

Dec 10, 2009 11:56 PM
Nyssa Smith
Keller Williams Advantage Realty - State College, PA
REALTOR, State College Area Real Estate

Nice Debbie!  Nice!  Your Friend in the real estate biz on the east coast... Nyssa!  Hi Debbie!  A big BRO hi!

Dec 13, 2009 08:48 AM
Lori Kim Polk
Premiere Home Staging : Home Staging Services - Roseville, CA
Home Stager - Roseville, Sacramento

Great information and so true Debbie. Met someone the other day who was actually soliciting some buyers at an open house, and he wasn't even a Realtor yet. Scary.......

Dec 20, 2009 11:03 AM