For sellers and buyers choosing the right Realtor can make a significant difference in how fast you buy or sell a house, the amount you receive or pay and the seamless completion of the transaction.
In St. Petersburg, Florida these days, however, finding a knowledgeable, ethical and compatible agent can be a challenge given the number of active realtors in Pinellas County – over 8,000!
So how do you find the right realtor? According to the American Homeowners Association, you need to do your research. This might take a while, but the initial investment of your time can pay off in the end with a successful real estate transaction. Here are a few tips the AHA suggests you consider, regardless of where you live.
RE/MAX Metro – Downtown St. Petersburg, FL
RE/MAX agents lead the real estate industry in Southern Pinellas, often outselling the competition in a remarkable fashion. This isn’t simply a metric of personal success, but it’s a reflection of the success they bring their clients by keeping their clients’ interests first.
According to Estelia Mesimer, a REMAX/Metro agent with over 20 years of experience, “client loyalty and referrals are a large part of my business…. Client satisfaction is my number one goal.” (Estelia@estelia.com)
Tips to Finding a Realtor
- Go with a Professional: The terms agent, broker and realtor are often used interchangeably. But not all agents or brokers are realtors. The term “Realtor” identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors and subscribes to its strict code of ethics.
- Experience Counts: Whether you’re looking for a Realtor to help you buy or sell a house, you don’t want to be part of someone’s learning curve. Don’t hesitate to ask a potential realtor how long he or she has been licensed and how long they have worked in the community.
- Get Referrals: Friends, neighbors and co-workers are often good sources for referrals. Get as many details as possible about their buying or selling experience with a particular agent. If you’re selling, look for sold signs in your neighborhood.
- Use Your Original Agent: Depending on how long you have lived in your current home, when it comes time to sell it, you might be interested in partnering with the agent who helped you find it in the first place. This is because there is often an element of trust and rapport between clients and agents who have worked together before.
- Think Local: Buyers and sellers should look for a Realtor who is familiar with the area. If you’re buying, a Realtor should be able to provide you with information on the community, the schools, taxes and other facts. If you’re selling, you want your agent to be able to talk to prospective buyers about these details.
- Agree on Expectations: If you’re selling a house, ask your agent to put together a written marketing plan detailing the steps they will take to sell your home. The agent should offer advice on how to prepare your home for the market and who has enthusiasm for your property. If you’re buying a home, make sure you know how often your agent will supply you with listings, how many houses you can expect to see in a week, etc.