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Monday, August 15, 2011

5 Things To Look For When Choosing Your Real Estate Agent

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All agents are not created equal.  Anyone can become a Realtor ©. You can get your license in a few weeks or a few weekends and pass a test.   But what really sets the quality agents apart?  How can you tell you are dealing with an experienced professional who gets the results you are looking for, whether on the buying side of the fence or seller?  The difference between a Realtor © and real estate agent is the client level versus the customer service level. It's the difference between experience and professional experience and strictly the facts.

Good Agents Know How To Emphasize the Positives and Sell Them

Not everyone can be a good sales person.  It takes the ability to recognize positive (and negative) attributes and the professional judgment to be able to know which ones should be highlighted at what time.  A good salesperson also has the innate skill of knowing their client and understanding their needs so they can adapt to them during the entire process.

Negotiation is a Very Important Part of the Home Buying and Selling Process

There is a significant amount of back and forth during real estate transactions.  Negotiating is a huge part of the process and it can make or break a sale if you do not have a good negotiator on your side.  There are several areas where this will come handy – beginning with the initial offer.  Then, following inspection results if there are any adjustments and/or concessions to be made, also for issues like deciding on a benchmark price when putting up a new listing.

Negotiations are most prevalent during the time an offer is made and/or countered but can also be equally as significant after a home inspection, when some of the parameters of the offer may need to be changed.

Staying Up-To-Date Marks A Knowledgeable and Interested Agent

Keeping up with the skills that are in tune with technology, the latest tools offered in the industry or even useful and beneficial professional characteristics is an important component of being an effective agent.  Someone with extensive marketing experience will be an asset to a real estate deal because his or her market savvy will come into play at many points throughout the buy/sell process.  An agent who is adept at using the latest tools like social media to enhance their existing functions stands far apart from those who still employ old school techniques.  As long as your agent is one who demonstrates the creative use of professional skills and modern technology, you can bet you will have an edge.

Accessibility and Communication; Key Aspects of Real Estate Success

Nothing is worse than needing or wanting to get in touch with your Realtor © but not being able to reach them.  Conversely, the agents who make sure to maintain regular open lines of communication with their clients enjoy huge success.  Not only because they have happy clients who are not always chasing to be heard – but also because it ensures that there are no mismanaged expectations, inaccurate information, discrepancies, etc.

Communication is the second part of this important trait of a great real estate agent.  Being able to adapt to varying levels of client communication; managing stress during lengthy transactions (such as short sales that can take months); understanding clients’ needs – all these are parts of a whole where your agent connects with you on a grander scale.

Realtors Who Take Ownership to the Last Degree – Win 

Since not all Realtors © are created equal, it is the ones who are willing to walk that extra mile for their clients that almost always succeed.  Though this trait relies on all other traits of an excellent agent, it stands alone in one area – attitude.  Having the attitude that a client’s best interest is the first priority easily separates the top producers from the mediocre.
As you embark on your quest to find the perfect agent who is right for you – remember that the connection you have with your agent must “feel right”.  At the end of the day, this person will be representing your interests in what will probably be the largest purchase of your life so it is important that you are comfortable.

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