Having the right agent by your side can help you navigate the home buying process with confidence. To find the right agent, consider:
- Personal Recommendations
- Online Reviews
- Local Reputation
If you're searching for your dream home, you want a buyer's agent who truly has your best interests in mind. One that will use their knowledge and experience to guide you and help you make the right decisions, and one who will practice clear, open and honest communication throughout the process to keep you informed.
Want to find your perfect match? Consider these four things.
If a friend or family member had a great experience buying a home with a local real estate agent, naturally you might want to consider using them as well.
But just because mom and dad loved Karen from Acme Realty doesn't mean she's the right agent for you. Maybe Karen specializes in active adult communities and golf course homes, but she doesn't have a pulse on the suburb market where a first-time buyer can stretch their dollar. It's important to do more research into the agent and their experience to make sure they're the right fit for you and your situation.
Online reviews are a great place to start your initial agent research. Reviews are posted on agent finder sites, such as Realtor.com and Zillow, and also on Google, Yelp, the agent's own website, and their Facebook page.
Look for reviewers who mention things that are important to you, like that the agent actively looked for homes that fit their criteria, or that the agent only showed them homes in the school district they wanted.
Real estate sites with reviews will also show you the agent's past sales, including the street address and sales price. Look for agents who have sold homes in your desired neighborhoods, as this usually means they know the neighborhood, have researched comps to get their buyers the best deal, and can potentially even recommend the best streets to live on if you want quiet neighbors or an active family-friendly vibe.
Many real estate agents build their business largely on their local reputation and word-of-mouth referrals, and just like with restaurants and mechanics, people tell their friends when they've had an above-and-beyond experience.
Simply put: a great agent will have a positive reputation in the local community. You'll hear their name from more than one person, and when you speak with them they will gladly provide references from past clients. Follow-up with these references and ask them candid questions about their experience with the agent.
Hearing first-hand that the agent you're considering has a great reputation will validate the recommendations and reviews and help you decide if the agent is right for you.
Like mom and dad’s agent, Karen, it's not uncommon for real estate agents to have a niche in their market. And that's ok. In fact, having deep knowledge about a specific market can sometimes be better than having a broad (but shallow) knowledge of them all.
Find a buyer's agent that has experience with your needs: your local area/neighborhood, experience with the type of home you're buying, and experience at your price point. Many agent finder sites have a snapshot of this information, which gives you a good place to start. Follow-up that research with an actual conversation with the agent and their references to see if their experience will help you find your dream home.
Partnering with an experienced agent has additional advantages as well, including personal and professional connections that you can benefit from. As the saying goes, it's not what you know but who you know, a seasoned agent will know more people in the business and be able to give you insights that a rookie cannot. For example, they will know which developers are the best and which cut corners; they will know about properties before they hit the market; and they will be able to recommend an experienced and reliable home inspector.
The right agent has your best interests in mind, guiding you through the process, helping you make the right decisions, and ensuring you get the best deal possible. Let Dwellful match you with a reputable, top-performing agent you'll love. Guaranteed.