A First-Time Homebuyer’s 5-Step Guide to Selecting the Right Real Estate Agent
You’ve worked hard and saved harder. All in preparation for the big next step. Now it’s finally time to find the perfect place to call your own. But how do you choose the right guide to lead you through the process?
With the right agent by your side, buying your first home can be easier than you ever imagined. Use these 5 key tips to vet the real estate professional that’s right for you:
Find a Natural Fit
Select an agent that you feel comfortable with. It’s immensely important that you’re able to communicate your wants, needs and expectations easily with your real estate professional throughout the homebuying process.
Do you feel like you’re on the same page in what you’re looking for? Do they like to communicate the way you do — through phone, text, email, etc.? If you see the potential for friction at this early stage, it could be time to reconsider your options.
Talk with Past Clientele
Ask your potential agent for a list of their sales and listings from the within the past year. Talk with the new homeowners and inquire if they were satisfied with the services provided. Ask what any particular sale was originally listed for and what the final sales price was. Finally, gauge to see how similar those listings were to the home you’re looking to purchase.
You want someone who specializes in the type of home and particular price-point in which you’re looking to buy. And if the agent is in any way hesitant to share this info, that’s likely a red flag.
Realtor or Real Estate Agent?
Not all real estate professionals are created equal. That’s why it’s important to understand the different credentials your potential agent claims when choosing the right person to help you negotiate the purchase of your first home.
The biggest delineator between agents is if they call themselves a “Realtor” with a capital “R.” If they do, that means that they are an accredited member of the National Association of Realtors and requires that they follow certain industry standards and a stringent code of ethics. Odds are that you can be confident in your choice if they claim this title.
First-time homebuyers should also look for an “ABR” and “CRS” acronym in a potential agents title. “ABR” stands for “Accredited Buyer’s Representative” and means they’ve received additional training and education on representing buyers specifically in the sale of real estate. “CRS” stands for “Certified Residential Specialist” and means they have received likewise training and education in the particulars of residential transactions (as opposed to commercial real estate transactions).
Test Their Knowledge
The final, make-or-break step in selecting the right real estate professional to guide you through the homebuying process is to test their knowledge of other homes for sale in your area.
The right agent should be engaged with you as their client and informed about the area where you’re looking to purchase. If they can provide examples of similar listings and their final sales price from off the top of their head, then you’re probably in good hands.
Winchester Homes Realty Partner Program
When you’re looking to buy an expertly crafted, new Winchester Home, it’s a good idea to look for an agent who has joined our Realty Partner Program. But if they aren’t at the time, don’t worry. It’s easy to sign up.
By joining the program, your agent will receive the latest updates and information on our Move-In-Ready inventory, new models, homesites releases and more. That way, you’ll be on the inside track to find your ideal new Winchester Home.
Want more tips and advice from the Winchester Homes team? Be sure to check out the rest of our blog.