Choosing a Realtor to help you with the largest financial decisions you will ever make is just as important as choosing the right Financial Advisor, Accountant or Doctor. We all may know an Accountant or Doctor, but is luck of the draw the only criteria that qualifies them to work for you? While I love to work with my friends and family, I also understand the qualities that make me a good friend do not necessarily translate into to the qualities expected of a good Realtor. I’m sure that we’ve all worked with people who are great company at social events but impossible to work with on a daily basis. Yet, we all too often blindly place our trust in people we know without ensuring they truly are the right fit for our needs.
In an ideal world, every realtor you meet would have at least a satisfactory level of competence, above average product knowledge and a genuine intention to have your best interest at heart.
We do not live in an ideal world. Realtors are not created equal.
With that said, here are some qualities to look for in a GOOD Realtor when searching for the RIGHT Realtor for you. The list below may seem fairly standard – but when you spend the time to evaluate and compare, you may be surprised at how many Realtors will fall short.
1. Chemistry is Key, not just in love but also in business. Buying or selling a home should be a fun and exciting experience. If you’re working with a Realtor that isn’t the right fit for you – this process can become frustrating and painful. A good Realtor also understands the importance of working with a client that they enjoy working with and if on the first meeting the chemistry just isn’t there, neither party will benefit from this partnership.
2. Gaining your business is a privilege and a good Realtor will act in such a way that reflects this. He will do his homework, he will listen to your wants and ensure that your needs are being met. Unfortunately there are many Realtors out there that focus so much energy on attaining future business that they forget to nurture the business they currently have.
3. A good Realtor will be Proactive vs. Reactive. They will learn what you like and show you options you may have not have originally thought of. They will do their research about the schools in the neighbourhood you have interest in and get you more information without you having to ask. They will always have solutions to any issues that may arise before coming to you with the problem.
4. You get what you pay for. A good Realtor will rarely cut their commission for the sake of gaining a listing. A lot of work and money goes into properly listing AND marketing a property. As we all know, incentive plays a very large role in sales. A good Realtor will drop everything to ensure they handle any issues or challenges that may arise on their listing. A Discounted Realtor does not have the same incentive, and will most likely not offer you the same level of service. But what’s more important – if a Realtor is unable to justify his worth to you, what faith can you have in this Realtor to justify your houses worth to a potential buyer during negotiations?
5. Always know all the facts! A lot of Realtors like to boast about the number of homes they sold in the previous year. Congrats to them, they closed 28 homes in one year – but how many homes did they list? Would you rather work a Realtor who listed 36 homes and sold 28 or a Realtor who listed 15 and sold 15? The more important questions would be, how long did their houses sit on the market before being sold? How many homes were reduced in price over and over again? When issues came up, how accessible was the Realtor? Why didn’t those 8 homes sell? Don’t get me wrong – selling 28 homes in one year is nothing to gawk at, and for a Realtor that quantity is quite an accomplishment. But you are just selling 1 home, and quality should matter most to you!
So there you have it, just a few things in the list of many to expect from a good Realtor! Most importantly, just remember that when making the largest financial decision in your life, the Realtor you choose really does make a difference!
Good luck and happy house hunting!