By Catherine Fisher, Managing Principal Broker of Town & Country Realty
Many people seem to spend more time picking a restaurant than they do picking a real estate broker. I am always amazed by this because real estate is a major financial investment, whether it is your primary residence or a rental. No matter what type of real estate and regardless of price level you are buying or selling at, the transaction is a significant event. Who you choose to represent you as your broker makes a difference in your experience and outcome. So how do you find a great broker?
• Ask them a lot of questions. Ask questions like how long they have been in the business, what do they know about the area, how are they supported by their brokerage, what are the current market conditions, how they negotiate, are they full or part time, and why they are the right broker for you. You want someone who works as a broker full time, is focused on you, and has a high success rate of helping their clients achieve their goals.
• Make sure that they are asking YOU the right questions. If you are buying, the broker should be asking you questions like what your timing is, what your financial picture is, and if you have spoken to a lender. If you are selling, your broker should be asking you questions like what your timeline is, where you will be going after you sell, and what you owe on the home. Your broker will be helping you navigate the path to your goals and if they aren’t asking the right questions, they may take you in the wrong direction.
• Look for someone willing to tell you the truth, even if it isn’t what you want to hear. Everyone wants their house to be worth more than it is, but if that is not realistic and you price your home too high, it likely won’t sell. You want a broker who will respect you enough to tell you the truth about the price. The same holds true about condition. If something is wrong with the house, choose a broker who will point a potential problem out. Your broker needs to be focused on your goals, which means they will be honest and tell you what you need to know. Trust is key in a broker-client relationship. If you feel they are not looking out for your best interests, continue interviewing.
• Enjoy spending time with the broker or, at the very least, enjoy talking to the broker because you will be spending a quite a bit of time with them. Once you are under contract with a broker, separating from them can be quite difficult.
Choose the right, experienced broker from the beginning to achieve your real estate goals with as smooth of a transaction as possible. Call Town & Country Realty today at 541-757-1781 in Corvallis and 541-924-5616 in Albany so you can easily find the right broker for you. You will be glad you did!