For Buyers - Questions to Ask a REALTOR®
I have devised a list of questions to determine the quality of the services you should expect when being represented and working with a Realtor. Buying a home is your most expensive investment and future financial security. Where you buy, what you buy and what you pay for it will all determine its future sale value. Here are questions to ask an agent to help you decide the calibre and quality of agent you would entrust with your next home:
- How many years have you sold real estate?
This determines their level of experience (a seasoned agent with many years experience knows how to structure offers to keep you safe and steer you through difficult transactions).
- How many years have you sold real estate in the Niagara area?
The same home in another neighbourhood may be valued at a different price, as location and demand for an area will determine value. Local knowledge is essential to give you the best advice.
- Do you work as a Buyer's Agent? Do you have any credentials?
What do you do to represent my best interests? How is that different from anyone else?
- Is there a cost for your services and how are you paid?
- How many agents are in your office and what is your ranking?
Are they ranked number 1 in an office of 5 agents, or 50 agents?
- How many homes do you sell each year?
A lot of sales may indicate an agent who is not motivated by lack of income, but by their personal reputation and the quality of the job performed.
- What percentage of your business is repeat, referral?
A good track record of satisfied clients speaks volumes.
- Will you provide me with references from current or past clients?
Client testimonials and letters indicate an agent they would use again and refer to their friends.
- What services do you provide to help me buy a home?
Property searches or a list of properties for sale? An indepth analysis of the value of the home I wish to purchase? How do you negotiate on my behalf? Is there an after sale follow-up or support services?
- What is your source for finding me a home?
What tools do you use?
- How do you find Sellers if the home I want is not on the market yet?
- Do you know the current market trends and how they will affect the future value of the home I purchase?
- Do you negotiate offers, or does someone else?
If the agent is part of a team, whom else will you have to work with?
- Do you have your own personal support staff or fo you take care of everything?
- What are the top three things that separate you from your competition?