As a first-time home buyer, there are many questions, concerns, and uncertainties that you may have before and during the home-buying process. That is why before you begin your search, you should consider hiring a real estate agent. They will help elevate these unwanted stresses and moments of insecurity.
Now, the process may sound simple. But it’s important to ask questions to ensure you find someone trustworthy and who will represent you well.
They should have your best interests in mind and uphold the highest standards.
Asking these questions will help you make a confident decision in choosing the right agent for you.
To help you choose the best agent for the job, here are five questions you should ask when it comes time to hire a real estate agent.
1. Are You a Full-Time Agent?
This is important because you need to ensure the real estate agent and their resources are available to you when you need them most.
Things may move at a fast pace, and it’s very important your agent is accessible not only to you but to the selling agent as well.
A good example would be last-minute counteroffers from the seller with an expiry time on that offer. (Yes, offers do expire.) And it could mean the difference between you getting the home or not.
If your agent is unreachable while they are at their other job, this could not work out in your favour.
2. Do You Have Testimonials From Your Past Clients?
Testimonials are a key indicator of the type of agent they are.
Keep in mind that you are hiring a real estate agent to represent you. Like any job interview, the employer likes to see references to crosscheck the candidates.
Reading recent reviews from previous clients is a strong indicator of who the agent is. It’s also a great way to learn more about who they are and how they work.
It’s important to hire an experienced real estate professional who can effectively address your specific needs.
Aside from reading recent reviews, ask about their market knowledge and their experience with closing costs, property taxes, and housing markets.
So, it’s vital to choose an agent who can expertly navigate the market and maximize your buying potential.
3. How Often Will We Communicate?
Communication is key in all relationships, and the relationship with your realtor is no different. You should ask if they will provide real estate market updates and inventory updates. And, of course, ask them how often they will do so.
Will they contact you via phone, email, or text message? What hours do they shut down? (Don’t worry during negotiations or anything super sensitive to the purchase. All hardworking agents should make themselves available.)
Is the agent accessible early in the morning, in the evening, and on weekends? Lots of agents have families, so it’s important to ask if there will be specific times when they can’t be reached.
You probably have a preference for how you like to communicate, so it’s important to bring this up during your first meeting.
Remember that this process requires strong communication between you and your agent. You want an agent who stays in touch and checks in with you on at least a weekly basis.
Or, if you are in a seller’s or fast-paced market, you want to be in communication almost daily to avoid missing out on potential opportunities.
4. Will I Be Working With You Directly or Handed Off to Someone Else on Your Team?
You should ask the agent if they will be handling all the aspects of your real estate transactions or if they will be delegating some tasks to a sales associate or administrative assistant.
A knowledgeable assistant is a great resource and tool for agents. But you want to ensure that you are working with the agent you are hiring during the key times of your transaction.
Connection and a strong relationship are crucial. Not only does it build trust, but it also develops confidence in the person representing you when making one of the biggest decisions of your life.
5. Do You Have Partnerships With Other Professionals?
A valuable agent will not only have connections with lawyers, lenders, mortgage brokers, appraisers, and home inspectors. They’ll also have preferred relationships with handymen, painters, electricians, plumbers, cleaners and more.
These relationships can prove to be invaluable when buying. And it’s always nice to work with a trusted referral.
The home-buying process is an exciting and enjoyable journey. Still, it’s important to start on the right foot by selecting an agent who aligns with your personality and fulfills your expectations.
In a recent survey by Real Estate Insights, 82% of homebuyers reported that their agent’s knowledge of current market trends played a vital role in their decision-making process.
Remember, incorporating market trends, the closing process, and the sale process into your decision-making can significantly impact your overall satisfaction. Clients also felt more confident during the closing process when they had a qualified buyers agent by their side.
If you have a list of questions regarding working with buyers’ agents or if you’d like to schedule a meeting to discuss purchasing your next home, we encourage you to contact us at Dave Masson Real Estate Group!
We are here to provide you with answers to any questions you may have and assist you throughout the home-buying process.
Feel free to explore our comprehensive collection of articles covering various real estate topics. These resources can help you enhance your understanding of the real estate market in the Vancouver area and provide valuable insights that can help you make informed decisions.
Happy house hunting!
For more useful information on becoming an educated buyer in today’s market, contact us for a free copy of our ‘Becoming an Informed Home Buyer’ guide.