How to Choose the Right Real Estate Agent When Buying a Home

June 25, 2020


Whether you’re a first time home buyer or a seasoned veteran,  buying a home can be complicated and downright stressful. It’s no wonder, then, that the overwhelming majority of home buyers choose to work with a real estate agent. But even though buyers understand the advantages to working with a real estate agent, many also report that it’s hard to find the right real estate agent. Read on for tips and suggestions on how to choose the right real estate agent who is the best fit to help you buy a home. 

Do your own research 

First, check out the area in person.  Drive or walk around the neighborhood, making sure to look for agent names on real estate signs (bonus for repeat names or a “sold” sign next to them). Drop into any open houses and observe how the agent interacts with potential buyers. And don’t just pick up a business card and head back out the door. If you have time, engage with the real estate agent, and pay attention to personality and personal chemistry. 

Compare reviews, references, and ratings 

Next, take your search online to do a quick name search of the agents you’ve identified. Visiting sites such as the California Association of Realtors is a good place to start. Next to personal referrals, online reviews can be a great source of information. Read through reviews to find out what local people are saying about the agents — and be sure to pay attention to how each agent responds to their reviews (particularly any negative reviews). 

Of course, there is no substitute for a personal referral, so be sure to ask around among your trusted friends and family members. 

Find a real estate agent to interview

It’s always a good idea to meet with and interview potential real estate agents. When hiring a real estate agent, don’t settle on the first agent that you come across. By talking with different agents, you’ll be able to better compare qualities, in order to find an agent who will be a good fit for you. 

Ask the agent specific questions and then compare their responses. Some questions you could ask include: 

  • How long have you been working in the real estate industry? 
  • Do you primarily work with buyers or sellers? 
  • Are you equipped to handle my unique situation or specifications? 

Set clear expectations when selecting your agent

Once you’ve chosen the agent you’d like to work with, it’s important to set clear expectations and preferences. Explain your preferences for communication, as the lack of communication is often one of the top complaints when working with a real estate professional. Making sure your communication styles mesh can go a long way toward establishing a solid relationship with your agent. 

Clarify how motivated you are to purchase, and make sure you’ve explained any specific requirements on timing. Are you on a strict timeline to purchase? Is there a specific price you can’t go above? Make sure to share these details early on so that you and your agent are on the same page. 

Alternatives to working with a traditional real estate agent

If you decide not to work with a traditional agent, Reali offers a home buying process that you can trust. Whether you’re just getting started or you’ve been through the buying ringer, we have your back. We offer experienced local agents and have the technology to help you win the home you want — and at a price that you can afford. Buyers also love our Reali Rebate. When we get our commission from the seller, we don’t keep it. Instead, we pass it along to you as a tax-free cash rebate. All we take is a flat, low transaction fee. To date, Reali buyers receive an average of $20,000 in cash back! 

Have any questions or ready to get started? Reali agents are located all across California and are committed to providing an honest and transparent home buying experience.

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