Home buying is no easy to task. Thankfully, there are people who make their living by making it more manageable. Asking questions at all stages of the realtor-client relationship surely helps. The answers to these six questions, for example, will greatly assist you in assessing your realtor’s qualifications and skills.
1. How long have you been a realtor?
While a freshly licensed realtor can be just as easy to work with as a more seasoned agent, real estate is mostly learned through real world experience. Typically, someone who has worked in the industry for a few years and orchestrated a variety of sales is preferable.
2. How many buyers are you working with now?
This may sound a bit personal but it’s actually well within the realm of appropriate questions to pose to a potential realtor. Reading the realtor’s answer can be a bit tricky, however. Having lots of buyers at once can be a sign of efficiency and trustworthiness but having too many can make an agent short on time. First, you may want to decide what’s more important to you – a quick shopping process or personalized, well-detailed communication?
3. What can I get for my money?
Whether this is your first home buy or not, you should always ask what you can afford upfront. You’ll want to find out how realistic your “wish list” features are sooner rather than later. Plus, an experienced agent might want to have you pre-qualify with a mortgage broker. Always keep in mind that a good realtor should be able to work within the budget and shouldn’t pressure you to venture way outside your pre-determined range (or comfort zone).
4. Can you tell me more about this neighborhood?
Finding an agent that concentrates on the area you’re hoping to buy in is always a plus. You’ll want someone who knows the local market and can also tell you a bit about the schools and businesses in the area. While you’re out house hunting, don’t be afraid to pull out a little real estate lingo by asking your agent about “comps” meaning similar homes in the vicinity. Knowing what the sellers are asking in your target neighborhood can help you determine how much you can spend or how far to widen your search.
5. When can I move in?
This question is usually asked when you’re looking at a home you really love. There is no pre-set timeline for sales and move-ins but your realtor should be able to give you an idea of how long he or she usually needs to close a deal and get through the “escrow” period.
6. I think this is the one! Now what?
Hooray, you’ve found your dream home! Of course, this is where things get serious. Your realtor should be capable of explaining the entire purchase process in detail from settling on an offer and a loan option to guiding you through the home inspection.
What additional questions would you ask a realtor? Share in the comments below!
This blog post was written by Beazer Homes: Headquartered in Atlanta, Beazer is one of the country’s largest single-family homebuilders. Beazer homes meet or exceed the ENERGY STAR® energy efficiency benchmark for new construction, are designed with Choice PlansTM to meet the personal preferences and lifestyles of buyers, and provide preferred lender choices to facilitate transparent competition between lenders and enhanced customer service.