Are you finally ready to take the plunge? Before buying a property, it’s recommended that you find an agent to help negotiate the many twists and turns along the way. As a buyer just entering the property market, you naturally want to find the best home for the best price.
Buying a house is a monetary and emotional decision that needs the experience and support of a trustworthy professional. In the labyrinth of viewings, negotiations, paperwork, financing, inspections and pricing, it makes sense to find an agent who knows the community and has in-depth knowledge. This professional will be found among the local real estate agents who serve your chosen area.
Finding the perfect agent takes some thought and research. It’s rare that the first person you speak with will be the ideal match for your needs. When you’re entering the property market for the first time, you’ll need someone who works in your chosen area and is easy to talk to.
How to find an agent
An agent who responds to e-mails and texts is important if that’s how you communicate. Ditto, phone calls. Find out the number of buyers they have represented and if they have time to find you a property. Many agents are so busy; they won’t have time to serve your needs properly. You want an agent who has the time to be your best advocate.
Get input from friends and family because just about everyone knows a real estate agent; 52% of home buyers find an agent through a contact. When you’re just entering the property market, a house is a life changing purchase and you’ll want to interview several possible candidates.
Approach potential agents as you would when trying to find the best doctor before an operation and don’t settle for the first agent to cross your path. Here are some factors to consider before deciding which agent is right for you.
A good agent will help you learn
Find an agent who can help you learn the market as preparation before you purchase. This is in-depth research that can take as much as six months or as little as several weeks. Your agent can help by giving you every listing in your price range in your neighborhood. Be specific and learn as much as you can about where you want to live.
Part of learning the market is viewing many homes and judging their quality, condition, location, size, and features. Many elements should factor into your decision: school districts, crime rates, appreciation rates, and availability of services. Learning the market includes seeing as many homes as you can, learning about value and educating yourself on the available styles you prefer.
Trusting your agent to know what you’re looking for, allows them to preview homes for you, that’s part of their job. If they see a suitable property, they can contact you right away and schedule a viewing.
The connected agent
Technology plays a big part in the arsenal of the tech-savvy agents of today. They can be seen driving around searching homes with iPads and mobile phones. Now you can easily and efficiently research a home’s details online without the paper trail of the past. Agents who use technology like this can access real-time data and give the quickest service to help get the home you want.
Along with a good, working knowledge of the area, an agent will often have relationships with lenders that buyers can work with to determine details and get pre-approved for a mortgage. Ask your real estate agent who they recommend as a loan agent, or get referrals from other trusted sources. Work with your lender and real estate agent together and be sure your lender promptly gives you a “truth in lending” disclosure.
Find an agent who’s a good match for you and you’ll have an ally when you need them most.