The perfect real estate professional for you isn’t necessarily born in McLean, and does not have be the friend of a friend.
The right real estate pro for you wants to work hard to find you the garden-style condo of your dreams, and is not afraid to tell you the truth (even when you don’t want to hear it).
Your needs are not the same as the last buyer’s needs. Some home buyers love colonials-style homes. Others do not. Some purchasers don’t plan on selling. Others need to move in 4 years. Some buyers love the fact that Nesbitt Realty will rebate them $715 when they use me to purchase 1533 Lincoln Way #102. (Others couldn’t care less.) Just as shoppers have different needs, real estate professionals have different persistence and patience.
Here’s what you should pay attention to when finding the most suitable agent for you when you’re buying in McLean:
- Check out Realtor referrals. — I like Angie’s List because I know that Angie’s List voice verifies each review. You can also see if the agent or brokerage has any awards for client satisfaction.
- Speak with a few Realtors — Take a moment to talk to me on the phone. If I can’t help you, I can point you toward a licensed real estate adviser who is more suited to your needs. I once saw a statistic that 84% of buyer clients in Northern Virginia choose the first real estate agent they contact. This means one of two things. Either most people are choosing wisely the first time, or they’re just rushing into things without shopping around. Probably a little of both.
- It’s important that you get along well with your Realtor. — Interpersonal skills are as important as professional skills. You don’t want to have to explain the same thoughts and ideas over and over.
- Ask the agent his/her process for finding homes. — When selecting a Realtor, ask how they identify residences. Some real estate professionals have their own preferred listings that they favor. But you want what’s best choice of for you, not what’s ideal for your Realtor. So make sure the real estate professional is willing to search high and low to find the dream pied-a-terre for you. That includes using the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) as well as their own personal network.
- Read paperwork carefully. — The Commonwealth of Virginia requires all licensed agents to sign a representation agreement before showing properties or having material discussions about a specific place of residence. Be very wary of any agent that is not concerned about getting a representation agreement signed. Some representation agreements describe hidden administrative fees of $500 to $1000 that you must pay at closing. (Our does not.) Some representation agreements describe a rebate paid to the property hunter at closing. (Nesbitt Realty offers rebates.) You’ll want to read the fine print to make sure that this rebate isn’t pulled away at the last minute.