Buyer’s Guide – Picking Your Agent: What to Look For
I’m gonna be real with you – just because an agent has been in the business 20 years doesn’t mean they’re exceptional. And conversely, just because an agent is new to the industry doesn’t mean they stink.
Passion isn’t enough to make up for experience and doing things the way they were done 20 years ago isn’t a predictor of success either.
So if experience and passion aren’t clear indicators of a great real estate agent, what should you look for when you choose one?
1) Answers to Your Questions
Look for someone who is open to your questions and can answer them. Say you ask about whether aluminium wiring is an issue in the neighbourhood… If you hear “Oh, you don’t need to know that,” or something similar, you may have found a red flag. Remember, you want someone who values your success over their own.
So ask all the real estate questions you want. You deserve to know about what you’re buying into and we are here to educate you and find you answers.
2) Find Answers When They Don’t Know
Look for someone who will admit when they don’t have an answer, but will seek it out for you.
Agent’s don’t know everything. We can’t. The city is large, markets shift and change, and thousands of homes hit the system every year. The information is out there, so we can dig through and find what we need. They key is in doing just that.
3) A Stickler For Paperwork
Look for someone who is picky about paperwork and talks about how to ensure that you are protected in contracts. It’s important to have someone who knows what terms to negotiate, how to word them, and how to protect your rights and your deposits.
You don’t want to move in and not be covered under contract if, for example, you have a mess to clean up, if appliances break down immediately, or if you find that items that should have been included were not.
4) Knowledge of The Neighbourhood
Look for someone who is familiar with the market you are searching in, or has close connections they can draw on to get insight.
Knowledge of the neighbourhood you want, comparable neighbourhoods, what makes those neighbourhoods similar, and the demand for those areas are key to helping you understand what to expect in terms of pricing and availability.
5) Frequent Sales
Look for an agent who helps at least 12 buyers purchase homes (sales and purchase agreements) per year, or who is part of a team that does. A great real estate agent either has the expertise of doing the job or has access to the expertise that comes from completing multiple deals to understand how the market is behaving and how it will impact you.
6) Knows Their Value
And finally, look for someone who knows their value as a professional, an advisor, and a consultant in your own journey. Understand that this is a business. It’s a business based on serving you, protecting you, and educating you.
I see too many professionals negotiate away their paycheques to convince buyers to work with them. If someone is willing to negotiate away their income, then what else are they willing to negotiate away? Your rights? Your money? Your future financial stability?
While that may sound a bit drastic, this is a huge purchase with long term impacts for your life. If they know their value, they will not accept less than they’re worth.
Find Your Dream Home with SoldYEG!
There are a LOT of great agents out there. I know because I get to work with a lot of them on a regular basis. If you need one of those great agents, we are here for you!
We are experts in the Edmonton real estate market, and if you’re not in Edmonton, we can set you up with our counterparts in other markets. We are bought in to your success.