Congratulations! You’re ready to buy a house. Before you open your checkbook, however, you should know that obtaining the services of a realtor can be extremely beneficial for your bottom line. Not only are they trained to handle things like price negotiations, but they also know where all of the best properties are hidden.
But what if you’ve never hired a realtor before? How can you be sure that you’re looking in the right places and interviewing the right subjects? Here are just a few tips for finding, selecting and hiring a good realtor in the Calgary area.
1. Research Their Background
Most realtors have some kind of “about me” page on their website, so you’ll be able to get a good idea of their personality before you even pick up the phone. Where did they go to school? How long have they been licensed? What are their core values? These are all important questions to ask before you hire their services, so don’t skimp on the research.
2. Talk About Their Pricing
Finances can be an awkward thing to bring up during your first meeting, but it’s better not to waste time with someone that you can’t afford. Ask them right off the bat about the kind of commission that they’re expecting, and get detailed information about any other expenses that you should expect during the buying process. Do it all during that first meeting. Rip the band-aid off right away.
3. Find Someone With the Right Experience
Many realtors will rush to assure you that they have “12 years of experience in real estate,” but don’t be satisfied with these grand and vague claims. Ask them about the specifics of their careers. Have they spent 12 years working as a realtor, or does their “experience” come from something else property-related? How often do they work with buyers as opposed to sellers? How many sales have they personally closed?
4. Ask About Assistants
It’s common for realtors to hand off tasks to assistants and sales associates, so if it’s important to you that they always deal with you one-on-one, make sure to communicate your expectations during your initial consultation. If they seem surprised, they’re probably not the right realtor for you. On the other hand, if they agree to always work with you directly, you can move forward with your partnership with more confidence than before.
5. Test Them
At the end of the day, there’s no way to tell if you’ll like a realtor until you’re actually looking at show homes with them. Give them a kind of “trial run” where you ask for tours or brochures of houses in the area. A good realtor should be able to hit the ground running with your request, and they shouldn’t be flustered, unprepared or incompetent in the way that they handle things. If you notice any of these tell-tale signs of failure, it’s time to find another realtor.
These are just a few things to keep in mind when looking for Calgary realtors. As you can see, there’s more to the process than simply looking at someone’s photo on a park bench and deciding that they look trustworthy. If you’re serious about obtaining the best deal on your new home, use these guidelines to hire the right person.
Categories: Real Estate