Not everyone is up to date on the unspoken rules of working with a real estate agent to buy a new home, commercial property, or plot of land. That’s alright, but it might pay to brush up on real estate agent etiquette even before you begin looking for an agent.
Here are some simple tips for working with a buyer’s agent.
1. Find a Great Buyer’s Agent and Stick with Them
When you decide you’re ready to begin the process of looking for a home, you might be tempted to call the number on the sign of the first amazing listing you drive by to ask them about it or even ask to see it. Resist that temptation. Instead, shop around for an agent who meets your needs. You can check out reviews or ask friends, family, or coworkers for recommendations.
Ideally, you’ll also sign a buyer’s agent contract with the agent you’ve chosen if asked so that they can rest assured that you won’t ditch them after they’ve invested a bunch of time and effort into finding you the perfect home. They don’t get a paycheck unless they close the deal, usually, and they actually spend money representing you. Remember that any agent who is searching for or showing you properties will expect to represent you.
2. Property Questions Should be Addressed to Your Agent
Make sure that your agent is the person you turn to any time you’ve got a question about your home search. Don’t call an agent on a listing to ask questions, and even showing up at an open house without your agent and asking questions could potentially undermine the relationship you have with your agent. It’s their job to find out the answers to any questions you may have.
3. Be Clear About What You Want
Make sure that you’re open with your agent about what you want. You’ll save both of you a lot of time and energy if you make your expectations know up front. This means you need to be honest about what you need in a home and how you expect your interaction with your agent to go.
In that same vein, make sure you hear your agent out if they say your expectations aren’t quite realistic. You hired them because they’re an expert, but if you won’t listen to their expert advice, it can make both of your lives miserable.
4. Understand What is Required of Your Agent
Get familiar about what is required of your agent by law. Your agent’s responsibilities vary from state to state. Knowing what they’re obligated to do can help allay any confusion.
5. Ask Questions
If you have any questions at all, don’t be afraid to ask. Your agent has probably heard it all, and they don’t mind answering questions. Ask about real estate procedures, properties, the housing market, contracts, financing, and anything else that comes up. An informed buyer makes their job a little less tedious.
6. Go Ahead and Get Preapproved
Buying a home can be incredibly exciting. It is tempting to call an agent and start looking at properties as soon as you decide you want to buy, but it might be a case of putting the cart before the horse. Your home search will go much smoother if you take the time before you begin looking at properties to get preapproved for financing and you can narrow down your search to properties you will qualify to buy. Especially with the market is moving so fast right now, not having a letter of preapproval can lead some sellers to not take your offer very seriously.
If you need help finding a great mortgage broker or need a little direction in which type of loans you should be looking at, don’t hesitate to ask your agent! They have experience working with lots of people in finance and can recommend a lender that should meet your needs.
7. Be Courteous
The general rules of common courtesy apply to your real estate agent. Be on time to appointments. Be polite in your requests. Be understanding of the fact that they can’t fully control what happens on the other end of transactions, not with sellers or their agents.
Following these rules can go a long way towards giving both you and your agent of choice a successful and pleasant home buying experience. If you’re looking for a well-qualified buyer’s agent, contact Amherst Madison to set up an appointment.