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  • Writer's pictureKira Witherwax

How To Choose The Right Buyer's Agent

Thinking of taking the plunge into the wild world of real estate? Good for you! It’s a great way to build financial stability for generations to come (think your great-grandchildren). But before you dive in, you’ll want an advocate by your side to guide you through the maze of listings, negotiations, and paperwork. That’s where a buyer’s agent comes in.

How do you find the one who’s just right for you? Honestly, most buyers find their agent by accident. They call listing agents and then if the find one they like, they start seeing all houses with them. While that works out sometimes, it’s not the most direct route to finding your best fit. These tips can help you streamline the process.

Do Your Homework

Before you start browsing listings, take a moment to research potential real estate agents. Check out their online presence – websites, social media profiles, reviews. Do they specialize in the area you’re eyeing? Have they helped buyers with similar needs? What is their support system like if they a situation arises that they haven’t dealt with before? Is their broker or mentor involved along the way? The experience category doesn’t have to come from them alone, sometimes it takes a team.

Seek Referrals

Ask around in the community you’re looking to buy in for people with first-hand experience. This can include your friends, family, and colleagues. However, reviews can come in handy here as well. If you like their online reviews, but want to know more, ask the agent if you can speak to some of their past clients. Ask about the agent’s communication style, did they feel like the agent advocated for them? And had their best interests at heart? Did they go above and beyond?

Interview Time

Yes, you should “interview” them. Prepare some questions to ask, like how they plan to find your dream home or their approach to negotiations. This is your chance to see if your personalities mesh and if they truly get what you’re looking for. Remember, you’re not just hiring a professional; you’re building a partnership. This can be a formal sit-down meeting or a phone conversation. Personally, nothing makes me so happy as a buyer asking for a buyer consultation where we can talk about all the things, and they can ask me a million questions. This gives me the chance to really get the best sense of their wants and needs. And to see if we’re a good fit for each other.

Check The Chemistry

You want someone who not only has knowledge and expertise, but also someone you vibe with. Buying a home is a big deal – emotionally and financially. Your real estate agent should be your confidant, your cheerleader, and your voice of reason rolled into one. If you’re not feeling the connection, it’s okay to keep searching.

How Are They Being Paid

You definitely want to understand how the person representing you is being paid. Real Estate professionals can only be paid by their brokers. But their broker can be compensated in a variety of ways. It is common for sellers to offer compensation to the buyer’s broker. In this scenario, you as a buyer can get representation without an upfront expense. However, if you are viewing properties where compensation is not offered, then you may pay for representation out of pocket.The important part is that you fully understand how your real estate advisor is being compensated for their time. Never hesitate to ask questions.

The Biggest Take Away

Taking the time at the beginning to find buyer’s agent that is the right fit for you, is worth it in the end. You’ll end up with an advocate, advisor and good listener that will understand your wants, needs and situation, guiding you on your journey home.

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