How long have you been in residential real estate?
Real Estate sales, like other professions is learned through education, life experience and time of service. You will want to be sure that your dealing with a knowledgeable and dedicated individual.
Is it your full-time job?
While experience is no guarantee of skill, real estate — like many other professions — is mostly learned on the job.
What designations do you hold?
This is part of knowing what education the Realtor® has. For instance, if you are buying a home you would like to know that they are ABR Certified – Accredited Buyer Representative, someone who has specific knowledge on how to handle the buyer situations. Many other designations require additional education and experience to gain and may help you gain an edge on the competition. Designations such as GRI and CRS®, which require that agents take additional, specialized real estate training, are held only by about one-quarter of real estate practitioners.
How many homes did you and your real estate brokerage sell last year?
By asking this question, you’ll get a good idea of how much experience the agent has.
Will you represent me exclusively, or will you represent both the buyer and the seller in the transaction? Ask the Realtor to explain Agency and how it applies to you, the buyer or seller?
This answer is critical when developing a relationship with a Realtor®. It’s important for you to know how this agent will represent you and how important this relationship is within the transactions, once you develop a relationship with an agent (he or she) must put your needs, in relation to the purchase or sale of real estate, above their own. This is the type of agent you want representing you in a transaction.
While it’s usually legal to represent both parties in a transaction, it’s important to understand where the practitioner’s obligations lie. Your REALTOR® should explain his or her agency relationship to you and describe the rights of each party.
Can you recommend service providers who can help me obtain a mortgage, make home repairs, and help with other things I need done?
Because REALTORS® are immersed in the industry, they are wonderful resources as you seek lenders, home inspectors, home improvement companies, and other service providers. Practitioners should generally recommend more than one provider and let you know if they have any special relationship with or receive compensation from any of the providers.
What’s your business philosophy?
This answer is simple. Legacy’s motto, BRINGING INTEGRITY HOME, says it all. Our philosophy is to take the magic out of the Real Estate transaction and provide the much-needed honest information that is necessary for each client to make a realistic and accurate decision. While there’s no right answer to this question. The response will help you assess what’s important to the agent and determine how closely the agent’s goals and business emphasis mesh with your own.
How will you keep me informed about the progress of my transaction? How frequently?
It’s very important that you stay informed along the way, communicate with the agent what you would like, good communication, whether good or bad is important to making good decisions.
Again, this is not a question with a correct answer, but how you judge the response will reflect your own desires. Do you want updates twice a week or do you prefer not to be bothered unless there’s a hot prospect? Do you prefer phone, e-mail, or a personal visit?
Could you please give me the names and phone numbers of your three most recent clients?
Ask recent clients if they would work with this REALTOR® again. Find out whether they were pleased with the communication style, follow-up, and work ethic of the REALTOR®.
Do you have an assistant to help with details?
Some agents use assistants, but what is most important is, does the agent have the skills and knowledge to take the transaction from beginning to end? Here at Legacy, we do have the knowledge, and for those that are new to the business, they are walked through each step, so the process of each transaction is as smooth as the next.