Find a Top-Performing, Trusted Realtor in 30 Minutes or Less

You need to sell or buy a family — and to find a Realtor ® for that transaction, you have to sift through thousands of people who could make or break one of the most good, important fiscal decisions in your animation. Where do you begin ?
top agentive role Dave Mattes, who completes 21 % more sales than the average agent in Reading, Pennsylvania, thinks that “ a good very estate agent is person that dedicates enough time to treat their customers well, and they have fast responses, market cognition, and good communication. ”
For the average middle class American family, house wealth represents between 50 % -65 % of their total assets, calling for a professional who can handle such a valuable asset with care. Follow these steps find an agent you can trust completely and distinguish the bad from the dear .

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Four steps to find the Realtor that’s right for you

You can work with either a veridical estate of the realm agent or a Realtor® to buy or sell a home. Both professionals are licensed to transact real estate. But note that Realtors® are members of the National Association of Realtors and who are bound by the Realtor® Code of Ethics. Be certain and ask any agent that you ’ re interviewing about these qualifications .
beyond that, the right Realtor® for you will know how to commercialize and sell your house and know your area inside and out. They ’ ll not alone help you sell for more or save money where it counts, but negotiate for other non-financial concessions that you might need. And through it all, they ’ ll keep you appropriately informed .
A HomeLight infographic about the steps to find a Realtor.

Step 1: Look to the past. What are the agent’s actual results?

There are countless on-line sources where agents can purchase ads, listings, and tied pay to insert testimonials. If you ’ re only looking at an agent ’ s on-line presence, you ’ re not seeing the broad word picture. One of the best ways to know if they ’ ra effective is by their results. Past achiever is one of strongest indicators of future success .
Think about what matters the most to you : amphetamine of sale, sale to list monetary value proportion, or cognition of your vicinity. How promptly has the agent sold homes in your area before, and did they sell for number price or above ? once you know your priorities, use the agent ’ randomness results data to narrow your search .
All of these strengths are represented in a Realtor ’ s® sales history, but who has time to dig through months worth of listings ?
today, companies such as HomeLight will do this cultivate for you — and fast. Our agent-matching platform surfaces sales records of top real estate agents in your sphere to provide individualized agent recommendations. Simply tell us a bite about your plans to buy or sell, we ’ ll run a question, crunch the datum, check reviews, and provide you with up to three relevant and qualified agent matches in precisely two minutes .
Our herculean, data-driven joyride analyzes millions of home sales to find the best do real estate of the realm agents in your area. Its results aren ’ t based on questionable surveys, submitted testimonials, paid ranking systems or a friend ’ sulfur recommendation — but on what they get done for their customers. The equal tool ’ s speed and easy-to-read results allow you to browse and review agent profiles to determine who you ’ d like to interview. Enter your city and cluck “ find an agent ” to get started .

Step 2: Look to the now. Is the agent engaged in the current market?

A successful agent is one who is actively list and selling — immediately. They ’ ll have their feel on the market ’ south pulse, and have updated skills and strategies to bring buyers and sellers together. After narrowing your tilt of electric potential agents based on past success, look at their current pipeline .
Mattes advises sellers to “ expression for agents that have active inventory. ” You want to work with the people who are “ actually doing commercial enterprise, and who have a run of business that you can witness on-line, ” he advises .
Do they have sales or listings pending ? How many sales did they close in the last few months ? A quick glance at a few of their on-line profiles gives you a good idea of their market action .

Step 3: Interview at least three designated top agents

once you ’ ve found a few great agents in your area, take clock to interview and get to know them. once you decide to list or buy, you could be talking to them several times a day. You ’ ll want to have a beneficial rapport and clear communication. When you ’ re interviewing the agents, pay attention to how they respond .
Do they answer your questions with concrete, factual datum ? Beware of agents who respond with dim answers. You want person who knows the average days to sell in your market and the current average list price off the top of their head .
spirit for signs that they know your commercialize, like mentioning the new grocery shop opening down the pulley. A commodity agentive role is on top of changes that impact your home ’ randomness value .

Step 4: Ask agents the right questions

When it comes to interviewing agents, you could ask over 20 different questions to find the right match. But if you don ’ t have that much time, hera are the top five questions to ask .

Q: What is your “days on market” average?

A : The days on grocery store is the phone number of days, on average, for the agent to sell a base. For great agents, this number is typically about half of the days on market for average agents. HomeLight provides local days on market information for cities across the nation .
You ’ ll find a tilt of democratic cities at the top of our joyride, and cities in each state down below. Once you select your location, scroll down and look for the chart with the “ Days on Market ” figures. You ’ ll besides find extra information about what a clear local agent can offer .

Q: How many homes have you sold in the past 12 months?

A : According to top real estate agentive role James Silver, who works with 76 % more single-family homes than early agents in Detroit, Michigan, a actual estate team should sell around 200-300 homes in a year. He says that a estimable number for a single agentive role is in the 30-50 home crop. This scope won ’ t be the lapp in other areas, sol compare an agent ’ s transactions to your commercialize ’ sulfur average. In accession, consult our guide on “ How many Homes Should a Realtor Sell a year ? ”

Q: What is your sale to list price ratio?

A : This percentage is the final sale price ( what the buyer paid for the home ) divided by the last list price. A positive proportion tells you that they sell homes for more than the list price. Look for an agent with a sale to list price ratio that ’ s over the average in the area. here ’ randomness where you can find the average sale to list price proportion in your city .

Q: How well do you know the market in my neighborhood?

A : sell points like the choice of local schools, access to nearby restaurants and grocery store stores, and crime data, assistant marketplace your home. You want an agent who can rattle off the pluses of your area during an loose house, or point out what makes your localization desirable .
It ’ s a good sign if they live nearby or have had the bulge of their transactions in your neighborhood. An agent ’ mho HomeLight profile page besides has a map of every location where they ’ ve buy and sold houses, so you can see their natural process in your area at a glance .
Beyond the vicinity, do they know the veridical estate marketplace ? even if you ’ re in a seller ’ mho market, you want an agent who knows which buyer concessions are park for your area, and what you can safely ask for during negotiations without risking the sale .

Q: What are your priorities for buyers/sellers?

A : What do you need most from the sale ? If you ’ ra selling a home and relocating to another submit, travel rapidly may be your top priority. You need an agent who does their job well, firm, and keeps liaison to a minimum. First-time sellers or buyers likely need an agent who will go out of their way to explain every step. Think about whether you need an agent who keeps you in the cringle or takes worry of all the details without checking in constantly.

If you email that agent to set up any sort of time or call them and they don’t answer or email you back promptly, it tells you how your sale is going to go. It’s a huge red flag.

  • Nikki Lagouros
    Nikki Lagouros

    Real Estate Agent


    Nikki Lagouros
    actual Estate Agent at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty

    • star
    • Years of feel
    • Transactions
    • median Price steer
    • Townhomes

What makes a good real estate agent?

Numbers are only one slice of the pie, however. There are other factors that make a good real estate of the realm agent the best choice to list your home .
Has relevant professional certifications and experience
An agent who has learned about the commercialize, contracts, and the laws surrounding actual estate is the best choice to represent you. Their professional certifications indicate their competence, as does their years of experience. Some agents may have taken extra excess training in investment properties, waterfront properties, luxury homes — or in how to help particular clientele such as seniors or military .
Dedicated to the profession — not a part time hobbyist
You want an agentive role who makes their bread and butter from real estate, not person who will be working at a day caper when you call with questions. Accessibility indicates that they ’ re dedicated and give it their all. “ If you email that agent to set up any sort of time or call them and they don ’ t answer or electronic mail you back promptly, it tells you how your sale is going to go, ” says Nikki Lagouros is a full-time agent in Reston, Virginia, who sells properties 40 % quicker than the average agent in her area. “ It ’ s a huge red flag. ”
In-depth knowledge of the local market 
A great agent will have an in-depth cognition of the local anesthetic veridical estate market, but besides the area. They stay informed about upcoming developments that could impact your home ’ sulfur price. Plans to build a new highway on the other side of your backyard decreases its respect, a new resort area park increases it .
According to Lillian Montalto, a top list agent in Andover, Massachusetts, buyers should make indisputable an agent “ knows the marketplace, knows the inventory, is able to provide [ them ] with information, like how hot the market is and what homes are about to list. ”
Tech-savvy marketing skills
Does an agent post regularly on Instagram or another sociable media feed ? Do they know how to get your home out to a wide circle of matter to buyers ? Lagouros uses social media marketing to target potential buyers .
After creating an avatar of an ideal buyer for one of her listings, she builds geo-centers around demographics and areas that target them in her social media marketing.More and more, buyers are shopping and purchasing homes online. Pick an agent that caters to this slice of the market to increase your odds of selling cursorily and for top dollar .
Customer-fit communication style
Depending on the situation, some sellers want an agent who gives a high gear charge of personal care. If you send a text about an offer at 10 post meridiem, you don ’ thyroxine want to wait until 8 ante meridiem for a response.Other sellers might prefer to keep it short and dulcet, or handle everything by e-mail ( for exercise, if you ’ re selling a vacation home ) .
Your agent ’ sulfur communication style should fit your preferences, because you ’ ll be talking to them a distribute. Pre-listing or when looking at houses, and when evaluating offers.In a multiple offer position, Mattes says that sellers need an agent who can help them sort it all out in a way that makes common sense — helping them narrow it down if they want politics finance, a cash cover, or no inspections. It ’ s an important function of their job to communicate the differences between offers to help you pick the one that ’ s best for you .
Has a network of professionals
Would staging your home plate increase its sale price ? possibly the dine room could use a bracing coat of paint. A bang-up agent has a network of professionals that they can call on to get your home ready for sale and besides help out during the sale.Buyers often request repairs after the home inspection, but if you have to call around town and get recommendations and quotes it could delay the conclude. A good agent will know the correct person for the speculate .
Integrity, the respect of their peers, and negotiation skills
A thoroughly agent will tell you the truth even if you don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate want to hear it. They ’ ll encourage you to be honest on seller ’ mho disclosures, saving you from potential lawsuits after the sale.This integrity has likely led to a good reputation and the deference of their peers, which might be measured by diligence awards .
They ’ ll lend this integrity to the mesa during negotiations. even if you have a great offer, or have found a home that you ’ re thrilled to buy, there ’ mho constantly something to negotiate. It could be the close up date, repairs, or a rip back period. A good agent knows how to handle the back and forth of negotiations .
Dogged determination and self-motivation
Agents are independent contractors without the security of a regular paycheck of a 9-to-5 job. successful agents will have the dogged decision to succeed, following up with concerned buyers, responding to text messages former at night, and constantly working to get their sellers the best results .

What are the signs of a bad real estate agent?

A badly real estate agent could be one that isn ’ t a good paroxysm for your needs, or one who won ’ t get the speculate done. If you see any of these crimson flags, get another agent .

  • Invisible results and vague experience
    While we all have to start somewhere, you probably don’t want an inexperienced agent handling your largest asset. If you hear lies and half-truths when asking about their sales record, run! A good agent will be upfront about their past results and experience.
  • Real estate is only a side gig
    An agent who only sells real estate part time is unlikely to get you the results you want. Ask if the agent works real estate full time.
  • Unprofessionalism on many levels
    Do they show up with unkempt hair and a stained shirt? Is their behavior, such as late or no-show appointments, demonstrating unprofessionalism? Buying and selling real estate is a business transaction, and you want to work with a professional.Also beware of arrogance or an abundance of ego, particularly when you ask about past sales. An agent who responds arrogantly will be off-putting to other agents, making it difficult to negotiate, and could be over-inflating their track record and lack needed experience.
  • Unfamiliarity with the market
    If an agent can’t answer basic questions about the market, specifically the market in your area, it’s a red flag. Another sign they don’t know your market?Lagouros says that if they “don’t know the guidelines on the HOA, or of the condo association, or the various models or layouts for that neighborhood,” the agent could be misleading you about their expertise.
  • Shaky negotiation skills
    To close a sale, the agent has to be your best advocate, whether buying or selling. If an agent is over-eager to please, seems to be faking their enthusiasm, or you’re starting to feel like they’re not on your side, they might be the wrong agent for you.
  • Pushy with an agenda, too much pressure
    Ever got the feeling that a salesperson cares less about putting you in the right car and more about their commission? The same can be true for some real estate agents. When an agent is pressuring you to accept an offer that doesn’t fit your most important needs, take a step back.Also, pay attention to signs that your agent is misreading your cues — such as failing to even ask for what you want — or not listening to your answers.
  • Doesn’t understand contracts
    It doesn’t matter if the agent’s a good negotiator if they don’t get it in writing. Buying and selling real estate are legal transactions, and you need the protection of strong contracts.According to Lagouros, good agents know the contract and all the implications and loopholes to protect their buyers. She points out that in a real estate transaction, “people are putting down earnest money deposits of $100,000, if the agent flubs something in the contract, they could lose that money for them.”A good agent should go over the contract to list or represent you as a buyer, and be able to explain confusing terms and clauses.
  • You’re getting nowhere
    Has your home been on the market for longer than normal? If there isn’t an identifiable reason — your home’s condition or poor location — it could be a sign that your agent isn’t doing their job. Consider canceling your contract with them and finding someone else.

Differences between agents for buyers and sellers

Agents may specialize in helping clients buy or sell homes. Most agents provide both services, but it ’ mho common for agents to start their career helping buyers, and then graduate into becoming a more regular number agent. As you search for your perfective agentive role match, look for agents who work primarily on your side of the transaction and are passionate about their occupation.

Mattes thinks that the advantage to working with an agent who entirely handles either buying or sell is that you get person 24/7. If it ’ s a buyer ’ randomness agentive role, “ They ’ re superintendent focused on finding people a home plate and then learning the tactics to help their buyers get a home plate over person else, ” he says .

Now — go find a great agent!

Buying or selling a home is no easy job, but the correct veridical estate agent can make all difference. According to our inner datum, the lead 5 % of substantial estate agents across the U.S. sell homes for american samoa much as 10 % more than the modal substantial estate agent. If you ’ re overwhelmed by the estimate of finding an agent and sorting through their qualifications, HomeLight would be glad to introduce you to a few crown candidates in your area and get the testis roll .
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