It's vital to understand how to choose a Realtor. Like selecting any service professional – from an accountant to your family doctor – it’s important to do your homework before deciding on a real estate agent. Your home purchase or sale likely represents one of the most significant financial transactions of your life, and you definitely want to find the right person for you.
 

  • Why the Right Realtor MattersOpen or Close

    Upon beginning your search, you’ll find that many agents specialize in areas beyond general residential properties. You’ll find specialists in luxury homes, distressed properties, international transactions and more. Before you dive in, it’s important to determine whether you're dealing with a specific property type and/or a certain market segment – high-end homes, retirement communities, etc. This will help you from the start.

    It’s equally important to find an agent who can get the job done. Although your uncle's friend may dabble in real estate, ask yourself if he's really the person most qualified to help you buy or sell your home. Personal referrals are great, but only if they're based on relevant criteria.

    Abilities matter. And production matters. You want someone with experience, education and a proven track record of successful closings. On all counts, RE/MAX is a solid place to start your search. Nobody in the world sells more real estate than RE/MAX, and RE/MAX agents collectively hold more professional designations than agents at any other national real estate brand.

    You can search for a RE/MAX agent in your area – drilling down into aspects such as years of experience, production level, specialization, education and more – through the Find an Agent tool here on remax.com.

     

  • Questions Every Buyer Should AskOpen or Close
     

    Once you find an agent, communicate your price range from the start, along with the types of properties and neighborhoods you’d like to look at (and what you’d like to avoid). This will help your agent select properties that most closely match your preferences.

     

    If you're a buyer, you're looking for someone who knows the market inside and out; someone who can help you find the right house and help you make it yours. Whether you create your list of candidates through referrals, online searching or other means, you'll want to meet at least three candidates to see if they fit your needs. Let them tell you about themselves, and find out what skills and abilities they'll bring to the table on your behalf.

    Here are just a few questions to consider asking:


    1. Can you tell me about your real estate experience?
    2. How familiar are you with the area where I want to live?
    3. Do you work part-time or full-time as an agent?
    4. Do you have additional training or advanced real estate education?
    5. What should I expect when working with you?
    6. What kind of information will you provide me on the homes and neighborhoods I’ll be looking at?
    7. Can you provide references from at least three buyers you’ve worked with in the past six months?
    8. How will current market conditions affect my home sale?
    9. What resources will you use to help me find the right home?
    10. How will you communicate with me throughout the process?

  • Questions Every Seller Should AskOpen or Close
    Before you sign a listing contract with an agent, interview at least two or three candidates and ask the following questions:
    1. Can you tell me about your real estate sales experience?
    2. How do you plan to market my property?
    3. Do you work part-time or full-time as an agent?
    4. What is the right price for this house? And how did you arrive at that figure?
    5. How long will it take to sell at this price? What are the average days on market for a house like mine?
    6. How will current market conditions affect my home sale?
    7. How much should I expect to pay in commission?
    8. What kind of communication and/or updates can I expect from you?
    9. Can you provide references from three sellers you’ve worked with in the past six months?
    10. What happens if my house doesn’t sell in the time we contract for?
  • How Your Realtor Gets PaidOpen or Close

    Like professionals in other sales-based industries, the Realtor pay structure is based largely on commissions derived from successful transactions. Here's how it works:

    Seller's agent (or listing agent)
    The sellers and their agent agree to a commission percentage, in which the agent’s payment is based on the final sale price. The amount will vary depending on the area and the agent.

    Buyer's agent
    At the close of the transaction, the seller's agent splits the predetermined commission with the buyer’s agent as compensation for delivering a buyer. This split is usually about half of the total commission.


 

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