Finding the right real estate agent is similar to finding the right mechanic, physician, or contractor. There are a lot of realtors in the Houston market that are exceptional at what they do – but the trick is finding the one that meets your needs specifically. You want an experienced, dependable agent that also has enough time in his or her busy schedule to answer all of your questions and give you the time you deserve.
Start Your Search
When you’re about to embark on a search for the perfect real estate agent, there are a few things to keep in mind.
A Real Estate Agent Must Be Licensed
Perhaps the first and most important thing to check before selecting an agent is the agent’s credentials. Every state is different, but Texas has certain licensing requirements that must be met, even schooling. Candidates are required to participate in continuing education so that they can be more knowledgeable about law changes, or other updates in the real estate market. A quick search can let you know if the agent is licensed or not.
Check References and Experience
Even in this digital age, real estate is still a business that functions in part due to word-of-mouth reviews. Ask friends or family about agents they may have recently used. Looking for user reviews online is a great start, but it may be tough to find reviews for one particular agent, especially if they work for a huge broker. Ask the potential candidate for references as well. If they are unable to provide you with references, it’s usually a bad sign.
Once you have received a recommendation from friends and checked references, it’s time to ask the realtor about his or her experience. If their experience mainly lies outside of where you are looking for a home, another real estate agent may be a better fit for you.
Areas of Expertise
As with many other industries, real estate agents may have different niches and may work in areas that they are comfortable working in. For example, you may have found a great agent, who deals mainly in foreclosures. Or, your agent has dealt mainly with multi-family homes and commercial properties. A realtor who deals mainly in foreclosures may be able to find you a great deal, but may also be used to working with contractors and house-flippers. An agent who deals primarily with commercial properties may not know the answers to your questions about residential real estate. It’s good to ask about the agent’s areas of expertise before you sign a buyer-agent agreement. Additionally, there are great agents who have never been listing agents but are very experienced in closing a home.
Before meeting with the agent, tell him or her you are interested in homes in a certain area, perhaps having one or two key homes in mind that you’ve found with your own research. Upon meeting with the agent, ask for recommendations. An agent that has thoroughly done their research and asked what you are specifically looking for should provide the homes you found as a suggestion. This shows you that the realtor has taken their time, and meeting with you (and meeting your needs) is important to them.
Call Us to Start Building Your New Home
It’s best to find a real estate agent that is licensed, has been in business for several years with experience and references, and has ample time to not only act on your behalf but to negotiate and meet your needs fully. If you are looking to buy a new home, it may be best to look for an agent that specializes in newer homes. For help with new construction homes from start to finish, contact Kendall Homes–we can make your dream of home ownership in the Houston area become a reality.