How do you find a good real estate agent?My parents are considering buying a house in my area. I am thrilled that they are considering moving closer to me, but they have asked me to find a good...
My parents are considering buying a house in my area. I am thrilled that they are considering moving closer to me, but they have asked me to find a good realtor to help them find a house and I have no experience in this area. Just opening the Yellow Pages does not seem to be the best strategy.
Does anyone have tips on how to go about finding an agent to help me buy a home?
You should probably ask in your area for referrals. You should be looking specifically for someone who is a buyer's broker. Most real estate agents specialize in being seller's brokers; their legal obligation is to do the best they can for the person selling the home. This leaves the buyer unprotected; unfortunately, many buyers do not understand this.
The National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents website has a searchable database that may be helpful. Using a specialist is a good idea because there is no conflit of interest on the part of the agent.
My bank (USAA) actually has a realtor referral feature, and I honestly wonder if others do as well. We have had unbelievable success with this, as our bank is a nationally reputable institution and they maintain high standards for the companies, products, and individuals they seek to endorse.
In addition to personal references, I would also seek realtors who have proven track records of turning buying clients into selling clients. Our most recent realtor's casual motto was that she would not sell us a home she didn't believe she could turn around and sell FOR us later on.
I agree-you need to start asking your friends or others you know for recommendations. If your parents have any particular desires for their new location-single family house, duplex, condominium, new construction, fixer-upper-you might be able to ask if anyone has had positive experience with an agent in locating that type of property. If you know anyone who has recently purchased in your area, ask them for contacts and for any advice they can share about how they approached the process.
I too would suggest getting referrals. Do you know anyone who has recently purchased a house? If not, or addition to them, I would talk to loan officers at banks, credit unions or mortgage companies. They have worked with these agents and might be a great source of insight as to who is diligent, honest and knowledgeable. If you do call local real estate agencies, be sure ask if there is an agent who specializes in working with the buyers.