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How to Pick a Good Real Estate Agent

If you’re in need of a real estate agent’s services, you’ll certainly want the best no less. However, with so many out there that you can choose from, how do you know which one is right for you?

Whether you intend to buy or sell a property, below are tips that will come useful:

1. Speak to references.

Ask your prospective agent for a list of what they’ve listed and sold within the last twelve months, with contact details. If you’ll be selling a property, ask them if the have sold similar properties to yours based on such important features as price, location and the rest. Definitely, you need a specialist in what you’re selling.

2. See to it that they are licensed.

There are state boards that issue licenses to real estate agents. Stick to an agent who has one. Contact your state board to verify.

3. Choose the right agent with the right credentials.

Just like lawyers and doctors, real estate agents have specialties too. Common designations today include Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR), Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) and Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES). If an agent calls himself a Realtor with a capital “R,” that means he is a National Association of Realtors (NAR) member. If you hire a Realtor, you can be assured of an agent who has formally pledged to follow the NAR’s code of ethics.

4. Work with an experienced agent.

Know how long your prospective agent has been in business. You can ask the agent directly or check with your state licensing authority. You’d like to stick to prospects who have spent at least five years in the business. You don’t want your transaction to be an experiment.

5. View current listings.

Take a look at an agent’s listings online. Visit their website or search a realtor site’s online database for properties in the MLS. In this day and age, most buyers begin their search on the Internet, and you’d like an agent who knows how to use this tool for maximum benefit. You should tap that enormous market out there, or you may end up missing so many opportunities.

6. Ask about other houses for sale close by.

A good agent is knowledgeable about the different properties in your target location. Mention one that has just been sold or is still up for sale. If the agent can give you a few details, that shows that he does know the area pretty well.

Prior to deciding which agent to choose, you should have considered two or three prospects and compared them. After all, you can’t say that someone is the best for you without any point of reference.

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