Choosing the right real estate agent can be a challenging task. In Sarasota and Manatee Counties, over 4,500 licensed real estate agents are all working towards the same goal to help current, and future homeowners move through the real estate process. But how do you choose the right one for you and your situation? How do you know that this agent will make you feel that you are their only client and give you all the time and resources to make the most informed decision? Since the process can be overwhelming, the Sarasota Home Specialists team wanted to put together some tips for selecting the perfect agent.
Number 1: Interview a Few
When looking to buy or sell, you’re working through one of the most significant transactions you will ever be part of in your life. With that, it is okay to interview a few agents and find the one that checks off all the boxes. After all, a Realtor is performing a job for you; you want to know if they are the right fit to work through this transaction for you. You don’t need to work with your mom’s best friend’s daughter, who is a Realtor, just because your mom said that Susan would be so upset with you if you don’t. How do you know Susan’s daughter will give you her full attention or be the best fit for your specific situation? Family-friends and relatives don’t always make the best business partners, and it is okay to “shop around.”
Number 2: Comfortability
When looking for an agent, an essential thing to consider is how you feel working with this agent? Do your personalities mesh? Are they someone you could confide in and trust to make quick decisions? Do you think that they would be able to best defend you in your real estate transaction and get you what you need and want? These are some things that you should think about around your comfort with them, not just your personal comfort when talking to them but your comfort in knowing they can get this job done.
Number 3: Team or Single-Agent
Another thing to think about when selecting an agent would be to look into if they are a single-agent working on their own or working with a team of other Realtors. Neither choice will guarantee that a Realtor is good or bad at their job. But if they’re a single-agent, what happens to you when they are on vacation somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic with no cell service? Will you risk missing the perfect house to wait for them to come back? Did they supply you with an out of the office to assist you in showing homes or explaining some recent offers to you? Hiring a Realtor that has a team of other agents beside them can offer many benefits. With one Realtor, you now have access to the best marketing for your home, a transaction coordinator to make sure your home sale goes smoothly, a team lead to hold your Realtor accountable and share their experience with your agent, and an entire team of other agents that can support you if your agent is away or unavailable for whatever reason.
Number 4: Do you feel that they are available to you?
Realtors are people living personal lives and enjoying time with their families, but are they available to you outside of a Monday through Friday 9 to 5 timeframe? Are they able to schedule showings or coordinate a way for you to see a property at the drop of a hat, or are they going to need a few days to get back to you on a showing? If you call them at 7 pm because something just came up, will they pick up? If they aren’t available to you, how will they be if or when issues come up in the sale or purchase of your home? Now, I am not saying “are they available at midnight” (and many are) but are they available a minimum of 8 am to 8 pm?
Number 5: Experience
Now, this one is important, but I am placing it last on the list as newer agents can still be complete rockstars. With newer agents, what does their background look like? What does their team look like if they have one? How are they carrying themselves, and do they give you the confidence that they know what they’re doing? It is important to think about their success, but it definitely shouldn’t be the only thing you’re focusing on. Always consider their experience, but see how they can answer your questions or concerns if they are new.
There are a lot of other tips out there to find the right agent for you but use this list to help you get started! If you are looking to start buying, or maybe it is time for an upsize, or perhaps a downsize, let us here with the Sarasota Home Specialists show you what a best-in-class real estate process can look like!