Your best choice might not look like the typical licensed real estate adviser, and does not have be the friend of a friend. The ideal real estate pro wants to work hard to find you the abode of your dreams, and has the personality traits and tools to address your unique situation.
Here's my words to the wise for hunting for the perfect agent for you when you're purchasing a property with 4 bedrooms in 22033:
- 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.
- Interview several real estate pros — I once saw a statistic that 84% of home buyers in Northern Virginia choose the first Realtor 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 weighing all options. Probably a little of both.
There is no one-size-fits-all. I know that I'm not the real estate agent for every purchaser.
- Your Realtor should be someone you won't mind spending some time with. — Professional expertise is an important criterion when choosing a Realtor in Fairfax County. We all have unique personalities, and that's the way it should be. But when working with someone professionally, if helps if their personality “meshes” well with your own.
- Find out how each Realtor identifies houses for the home hunter. — When choosing a real estate pro, ask how they find properties. Some Realtors have their own preferred listings that they favor. But you want what’s most suitable for you, not what’s dream for your real estate pro. So make sure the Realtor is willing to search high and low to find the best property for you. That includes using the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) as well as their own personal network.
- Learn more about the representation agreement presented to you. — The Commonwealth of Virginia requires all licensed agents to sign a representation agreement before showing properties or having material discussions about a specific place. 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.) A representation agreement describes the agent's responsibilities and your obligations when a real estate agent shows you a home in Fairfax County.