TheStreet.com has a decent article out today — How to Pick the best Real Estate Agent for You.
Now if you happen to be in the Phoenix metro area, that’s a no brainer.
But if you’re not fortunate enough to live in our fair city, then this article may be worth a read.
I do, naturally, have an opinion or two on it.
Any article that provides insight on picking an agent should mention that you need to interview two or three agents before choosing. Yes, you can learn a lot about an agent or brokerage by scouring the Internet, but nothing replaces a face-to-face meeting.
The “Alphabet soup of designations” an agent can get may, or may not, indicate anything. Continuing education and training are always a good idea, but earning a specific designation doesn’t really prove anything other than the person sat in a seat and paid the fees. Whether they actually learned something is a whole ‘nuther story.
I do think the article is spot on when it says, “it’s really about personality and who you trust will work in your best interests”, “total honesty in a real estate agent or Realtor is critical”, and “find someone that fits your style”. Style is easier to determine than honesty. Trust your instincts, try to reduce your emotional investment and allow your BS meter to function. Most people can tell fairly easily if something just doesn’t feel right. You have to be comfortable with your agent. Have to. No exceptions.
Another thing I’d add is that you should implement a personal rule not to do business with family and friends. While using your best friends cousins wife may make your best friend and their cousin happy, the person that really needs to be happy with your agent selection is YOU.