Dec 05 2009

Realtor Screening

Published by Carolyn Thompson at 11:39 am under Real Estate, Real Estate Agent

Realtor Screening- How can you find a good Realtor?

  •  A Realtor must be doing transactions currently and in the recent past in order to:

- know the market trends

- know current real estate laws

  • A Realtor should be able to provide at least five current references.

-If you are a buyer, make sure that you get buyer references.

-If you are selling, make sure that you get references from the Realtor’s clients that have sold their properties using the particular agent.

-Ask the references if the property closed on time.  Did they get the offer that they anticipated?  Were their issues that the agent could have handled better.  When you ask specific questions, you will be able to determine whether the experience was actually positive or if there were problems that would go undisclosed.

  •  Ask the Realtor for a letter of recommendation from the broker.  It is essential that the agent has a good relationship with the broker.  This also shows that the broker may be accessible if there are problems that need to be resolved.
  • Has there been any disciplinary action claimed against the agent?  Many states will post agents who have had complaints filed against them and any disciplinary action that has been taken.
  • How much will the agent charge you to represent them.  In many states it is assumed that the home seller will pay the buyer’s agent.  In states, such as Maryland the buyer agent agreement is actually unclear.  It assumes that the seller is going to pay, but does not specify.  There have been cases in which the buyer’s agent has collected from both the seller and the buyer, without disclosing this to the buyer first.
  • Ask the agent to produce comparables and a executive summary of their findings.  Agents often interpret information differently.  This does not necessarily mean that one agent is right or wrong, it simply gives insight to their thinking process and lets you know if you think that they can decipher the information that the computer will spit out to them.  This also helps prevents hiring an agent that is trying to get your business by telling you that you can get more for your home than other agents that you are interviewing.  Agents that sell you are not necessarily agents that will be able to get your home sold. 

-If you would like Real Estate Search and Sale LLC to pre-screen an agent for you please contact us @  write “prescreen agent” in the headline.

 If you select an agent that we pre-screen for you, you will be given $200.00 toward your closing costs.

We get paid by the agents we refer.  If you would like to send us a list of three agents that you would like screened, we will ask each of the agents if they are willing to pay a screening/ referral fee.  Most say, yes.  This program is only applicable if the real estate agent signs the screening / referral form.   The form states that they will be completely transparent regarding their prior transactions and that they are to document any issues that may have arisen along with an explanation.

After the screening process we email you our findings. 

When your title company/ closing agent is determined, you simply send us a note and we will send them, verification that we are paying $200.00 toward your closing costs or cash back at closing if allowed by the title company and your state law. 

Getting a professionally screened real estate agent the first time will can prevent some headaches in the long run.  An experienced agent knows many of the pitfalls and how to address them.

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