Before you start looking for a realtor, you need to understand what representation actually is. If you want to sell your home, then you may be on the lookout for a specialized seller’s agent. Those who want to buy, however, are looking for a buyer’s agent. Both buyer’s and seller’s agents are legally bound to representing you properly as soon as you have signed a contract with them.
The experience of your realtor is perhaps the most important thing. Usually, those with the most experience tend to deliver the best service. If you find someone who was operating before the financial crisis and is still in business today, you are on to a really good one. Next, make sure that the experience they have is relevant to your own needs. Someone who wants to flip properties, for instance, will have very different needs to someone who wants to find a home to raise a family in. The second thing you need to know if how much of an expert they are in terms of the geography and demographics you require. For example, those who want to purchase a ranch will need a realtor that understands soil conditions and production methods and who can also look into the homestead that comes with the ranch. If, however, your interests lie in historic or listed buildings, you will need a very different type of realtor.
The other very important thing to look into is reputation. It is easy enough to find a realtor that has a really bad name, unfortunately. Luckily, you can also find information that tells you which realtors do have a good reputation. Don’t forget to go to the Better Business Bureau website to find out how well a certain realtor has performed in the past. Social media is another very important tool. The strength of social media lies in the fact that it is very hard to censor. Do also ask the opinion of people you know. Before you allow a single complaint to push you away from a realtor, however, find out whether there is any relevance on the complaint to you and see how the realtor has responded to the complaint and improved their service.
Usually, seller’s realtors will ask you sign an exclusive agreement with them. This is completely normal, but it doesn’t mean you don’t have rights. For example, if you realtor does not represent you properly, you can always terminate the contract. All it means is that you are only able to work with a single agent at the same time. Buyers, on the other hand, usually do not have to sign these contracts. However, there is a changing facing in the world and many now ask their buying clients to sign a contract as well. Last but not least, you need to understand the way realtors earn their living. Realtors can earn their money in a variety of different ways. Although there are a few realtors who charge a flat fee, the majority of them will work on commission. Before you agree to work with a realtor, therefore, you must understand which one of the two constructions they work with.