Hiring a Real Estate Agent? Ask the TOUGH Questions!
You’re about to make the most important decision of your life, don’t hesitate to make sure you’re hiring someone who’s truly looking out for you.
Let’s face it, we’re EVERYWHERE! You can throw a rock in any direction in the Santa Clarita Valley and hit at least one real estate agent (Please don’t though!).
The meaning of “professional agent” may be subject to interpretation, usually on behalf of the agent himself. Marketing is a wonderful thing, and in some cases, can really make someone look more successful and professional than they actually are. So what can you do to make sure you’re hiring a true real estate agent who will professionally and confidently represent your needs, whether you’re buying or selling a home?
Here are a few very tough questions you can ask a real estate agent BEFORE you hire him or her.
1. How long have you been a licensed real estate agent?
An important question that goes toward experience. It’s one thing to sell homes as an investor (Which you can do without a license, as long as they are YOUR properties), it’s another to work with someone who is a licensed professional who has an understanding of the rules, regulations, and ETHICS that they must follow.
2. Are you a REALTOR®?
Not all real estate agents who are licensed are Realtors. The Realtor designation is only allowed for agents who are members of the National Association of Realtors. Joining this organization provides agents with the support they need to truly and effectively help both home buyers and sellers. A Realtor is also obligated to follow certain guidelines and ethics that rise above those laid out as part of the Bureau of Real Estate licensing process.
Finally, agents who are not Realtors do not have access to the Multiple Listing Service, which can severely limit their level of service to both buyers and sellers.
3. How many deals did you close in the past year?
Yes, people like to work with people who are working. You’re not giving an agent to brag about their work. You’re learning their mindset, and how successful they are in closing deals. This also usually leads toward their level of experience in dealing with a variety of issues with positive results.
4. Have you ever had any disciplinary action taken against you in the context of your duties as a real estate agent or Realtor?
First of all, before you meet with your agent, you want to check their license status, which will also provide you access to any disciplinary actions taken against them (if any). To be fair, there are two sides to every story, and in some cases, the outcome of an agent’s disciplinary action may not necessarily be a mark against their level of service. In any case, even when you know the answer, ask the question anyway. Their answer may be an indication of their ethical standards (or lack thereof).
5. Exactly who will be handling my transaction?
In some cases, a real estate agent will promote himself as the one you’ll work with, only to hand off the business to others on his team. This isn’t a bad thing, but he or she should be willing to provide you with details on exactly who you’ll be dealing with; from showing properties all the way through the escrow process.
Go ahead, ask us the tough real estate questions!
We have nearly 30 years experience in the real estate industry, and are more than willing to answer these, and any other tough questions you may have to prove to you that we are YOUR CHOICE when it comes to buying or selling a home. Let the Elgin and Pilar Walker Team show you how we can help you realize all of your real estate goals!
Elgin & Pilar Walker
Keller Williams VIP Properties
25124 Springfield Court Suite 100
Valencia CA 91355
Office: (661) 290-3781
Mobile: (661) 347-6248