As with everything that takes place in this crazy world that we live in, there are always good and bad situations and “professionals.” The real estate world is no different and you must be mindful of the choices you make from way before you start your search to the time that you close on a property and on from there. There are those that just want to get the deal done so they can get a cut and move on and then there are the ones who actually care about you and your family and that you have gotten what you desired. Here are some tell-tale signs that you have gotten a good agent.

Communication. From the very beginning, communication is key to anything good or bad that may take place. For sellers, expect your agent to call you every single time there is a showing or someone wanting to see your property. All I can say is, accept the calls and let them in. Good agents will call you after each showing to give you some input from the people who just viewed the property. For buyers, expect your agent to call you every time they find a property that meets or exceeds your objectives, requirements and goals. This is where you must know that the real estate market is pretty fast and furious and that NOW is the time for action.

If you call your realtor and they do not respond, leave a message. If they do not call you back within an hour or two, you may want to bring that to their attention that you expect more and better communication. If your realtor calls you 2 or 3 times a week asking good questions and giving you updates about everything except the weather, then KNOW that you have a good agent. I have never heard anyone complain of over-communication. For me, no matter what is happening with a property or with a client, I always make it a point to send informational emails and make calls at least once per week but that is never the only communication that I send. You and your family’s goals are the priority. Anything less is unacceptable.

Clear communication about requirements. This kind of goes along with the first sign but this one points to the messages that are passed back and forth. If you give your realtor a list with 10 requirements and they start showing you properties that meet only 1 or 2 or less of those requirements then you need to have another discussion about expectations and requirements. This is also a point where your realtor must do a little expectation management and inform you that finding a property that meets all 10 of your requirements is nearly impossible but that they will try. On a personal note, I tend to break these requirements down further to 5 must-haves and 5 nice-to-haves. It makes the search a little more feasible and less stressful for all parties.

As time progresses when searching for homes, the requirements sometimes become clearer based on what is physically being seen. This clarity leads to communication that must be understood by all parties that certain requirements have changed or need to be adjusted. If your realtor is listening to you while viewing properties then this step should be transparent to you and your family. A good sign here is when your realtor is taking copious notes while showing you properties. What you may not see is the realtor’s adjustment to the search requirements.

Professionalism. The real estate world is about major amounts of professional ethics and trust. Your realtor must be well-organized and on time to everything. Realtors are here to help you reach your goals and objectives. Like communication, this is a two-way street.

If you are required to be somewhere at a certain time, it is because homes are shown according to a very detailed scheduling system. When either of you are late, then you are cutting into the scheduled times of others. Same goes for documentation, when you are sent something to sign, then sign the document as soon as you have read it and return as quickly as feasibly possible. Nothing like losing the ability to submit a single offer with no other offers than to hesitate in signing the document. This allows for more time to pass which means more showings on the home you want and eventually causing you to get into a multiple offer situation or a ‘bidding war.’ Nobody in the party should be ‘Pokes McGraw’! Remember, ‘Pokes McGraw’ will not help you to achieve your goals.

Resources. Resources are all materials, staff and assets that are necessary for successful completion of a task. In the real estate world this means that your realtor creates all marketing materials, uses every means of dissemination to get the advertising out for your property and uses every medium for advertising to include flyers, newspapers, email notifications, and online platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Craigslist, etc. Because the world is about the ‘here and right now,’ snail mail may not be the most advised means of marketing but you never know unless you try.

Pushiness. There is a difference between pushiness and falling into a reduced time frame. If you are going to look at a property that is receiving a great deal of attention and is priced well then there is the very real possibility that you may have to rush your decisions just to be in the running of getting that property. If your realtor is pushing you to certain properties that barely meet your requirements then you should find out the reasons why. Realtors are held to a code of ethics and steering clients to purchase a property based on any reason whatsoever is not ok. This is the fine line. If your realtor has found a property that meets 5 must-haves and 4 out of 5 nice-to-haves, they may be trying to get you to that location ASAP. This all can be resolved by clear communication between the client and the realtor.

From a selling standpoint, pay close attention to what your chosen realtor is doing. There is a difference between being knowledgeable and being known for being “hard to deal with.” If you realtor tells you that you will do your deal this way and that way and that there will be no negotiations with anyone then you have to know that is not the best way to get your home out there for the world to see. You want someone who is a good negotiator, who understands and abides by good business practices. Good negotiations are not when a potential buyer makes an offer on your property and your realtor tells you, “No, you will not accept anything but what the contract states.” I have seen these scenarios and seen deals die just because one realtor would not even debate any adjustments. Don’t be that seller.

At the end of the day, you and your family are the most important people to your realtor. If you feel anything other than that then just think of the possible outcomes that could occur. Your realtor should be proficient, cordial, professional and someone you could be friends with outside of the transaction. Good real estate is based on good and dependable relationships. When you are ready to work with an outstanding realtor who understands all of these things, call/text me: 931-551-1861 or email me richardl@kw.com.

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