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What to Look For In a Real Estate Agent: Updated 2018

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This summer, the housing market is going to be more turbulent and competitive than ever. Finding the right house for your budget, location, and other preferences is going to be an uphill battle at best and an all out war of attrition at worst. Dust off your sneakers because you’ll be running all around town to beat your competition to the best house for your needs. This goes for you too, sellers! With fluctuations in the marketplace, prices aren’t going to be as firm and you may end up with a house priced well, but stagnating, or getting lots of offers, but most of which will be lowballs.

Before you set out to find the perfect house, many people forget the most important first step: finding the perfect real estate agent. Today, we’re going to explore some qualities that you should be looking for in your next real estate agent in order to help you buy or sell a house this summer.

Communication

If you find a few real estate agents in your search that look good on paper, try sending out a few emails/texts/calls. Pay attention to how long they take to get back to you. The best of the best should be getting back to you within the hour. Anyone slower than that shouldn’t make the cut.

Web Presence

First off, if you haven’t Googled their name yet, you should. What comes up? Is their Facebook or Twitter ranking first over their own website? Do they even have their own site or are they just on a single “Agent” page on their parent company’s site? If they don’t have their own site, you may want to pass and find someone who does. Now, if they do have their own site, you should check to see if their current listings are there, if they update their blog regularly (at least monthly if not more!) and if they have good testimonials. Feel free to contact them through the site and ask for references. This could save you a lot of hassle!

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Social Media

How’s their social media game looking? Do they even have one or all of “The Big Three:” Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin? If they do, look at how often they tweet and post. Are they having lots of open houses and commenting on local events and suggesting activities? If not, then maybe swipe left on them. An active social media presence is a sign of how active they are in their own community and how hard they are hustling. Plus, you know they are at least technologically advanced to help you with your modern house-hunting needs. Go social or go home!

Bonus

Ask if they can recommend a good painter or lender. If they do, then give them a call and ask that person about the real estate agent. They may be able to paint a fuller picture than the average person they help with a house transaction. After all that, you should be able to find the perfect agent to help you find your perfect home this year! Good luck out there.

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Karen Boos