You bet! If you are looking to buy, sell or lease, hiring the right real estate agent will save you time, money and anguish! However, selecting the agent/broker that makes the perfect fit for you can be a challenge. Follow these 6 basic tips:
1 Go local. Choose an agent who has knowledge and experience of the market in the area where you want to sell, buy or lease.
2 It’s a human to human relationship. Technology does not replace good chemistry. Choose an agent you can relate with and talk to.
3 Agents are as good as the knowledge and service they provide. Be sure your agent has the qualifications to provide the level of service you require and the ability to negotiate and close the deal on your behalf.
4 Commercial Real Estate (CRE) is a very different arena. A CRE agent must be educated and experienced in the myriad aspects of commercial real estate. A CRE agent must speak the same language as other CRE professionals to be able to successfully navigate through a commercial real estate transaction. The CCIM Institute is the premier leader in commercial real estate education and a good place to search for a certified CCIM in your area.
5 It’s not just searching for and finding the right property. The job of a Residential Real Estate agent/broker requires extensive work, knowledge of the market and a great communication network. Make sure you find an agent you can trust and who has your best interests at heart, not just the lure of a commission paycheck.
6 Honesty is the best policy. A real estate agent should be held to the highest professional standards. A strong code of ethics is a must to comply with the codes and regulations that regulate the business and guarantee a satisfactory ending for all sides of a transaction. If something doesn’t look right, request referrals and follow your instincts.
Now that you have chosen an agent, you need to choose the right type of brokerage agreement depending on whether you are on the side of the Seller / Landlord or the Buyer / Tenant. This agreement will establish the type of relationship between you and the agent /broker.
There are three basic types of brokerage listing agreements between the agent and the proprietor/landlord: Exclusive, Semi-Exclusive and Open. If you are looking to buy or rent, you will be best represented by a Buyer or Tenant Representation Agreement.
An agent with an exclusive agreement will place greater effort and time into getting the task done. Motivation is key. An agent who is guaranteed a share of the commission if successful is going to work harder and be more committed.
We will follow up on the different types of brokerage agreements in the next issue.