Searching for an agent can be overwhelming, especially considering there are close to 2 million in the United States and Canada. While we can connect you to a great local agent for free, we still want you to be informed if you another route, so here are some must knows…
Is the Industry Licensed?
Any person in the United States or Canada stating they are a REALTOR®, must be licensed – as this is a regulated industry. This protects you.
Members of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) in the United States or the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) in Canada are the two national organizations that regulate agents. Member agents are bound by a strict code of ethics issued by the NAR/CREA. These organizations are heavy involved in analyzing real estate board statistics, market trends and setting ethics standards. When you hire an agent to work on your behalf, it is important that the due diligence has been taken as choosing a REALTOR® who is unethical or just plain bad at their job can lead to dire consequences such as fines or losing their license.
They also set, along with their governing State/Provincial lawmakers, regulate the education required to become a REALTOR®. Other factors that one may consider will be work experience. While some agents only sell commercial properties, others only sell residential. Another example would be two REALTORS® that sell residential properties, but one is an expert on farms and single family homes and another has only sold condos and town homes.
Do not make the mistake of calling up the first REALTOR® you see and hiring them after a ‘good’ phone call. It is best practice to interview a number of REALTOR®s instead of choosing the first one you call. In fact, we recommend that you interview at least three, but you’ll need to first educate yourself on what questions to ask and what answers to listen for.
Asking the Right Questions
Make sure you ask the important questions!
- How long have you worked in the real estate industry?
- What types of homes to do you sell the most of?
- What is your schedule like? Will you have time to take on another client?
- Ask Google about your REALTOR®! You may find great things or bad things, but you should know!
- Does your agent work full time or part time?
- What hours will your agent be available to meet with you?
- If you have a family, it may be important to you to work with a family man/woman. Ask!
- If you are more fluent or comfortable working in a different language, do your research and find a good match!
The RealAgents.ca benefit is that we and our referral agency partners know all the questions, answers and secrets already. We know what to listen for and what the red flags will be. We are all busy and when you trust us to help you find your top local REALTOR® it frees up your time to focus on finding your next home, not vetting multiple agents and stressing about who the best choice is.