Today, the teller at the bank told me she wished she had known an agent like me who gave a good real estate counseling session before they purchased their house 15 years ago.  She made it clear she and her husband when through a difficult ordeal in their home purchase, and implied the agent added to the troubles.  It's a shame not everyone has a great buying experience.  Here is a list of pitfalls to watch out for when selecting an agent:

 

Watch out if the agent does not take the initiative or the time to explain the buying or selling process to you.  Even if you are very familiar with the process, you need someone who doesn't make assumptions about what you know.  Similarly, if the agent is either not asking you questions about your buying or selling desires (or listening closely to your answers!) there's a problem.  It is important that your agent be passionate about service... they need to have a desire to put your concerns before their own.  You want to see the agent has a plan to move forward toward your goal.  If you are a seller, that means you want to see a written marketing and pricing strategy before anything is signed.  Most of all, look for great values.  All agents, and business people, claim to have integrity; it's almost laughable.  Watch and listen to the agent's behavior very closely.  If you hear them tell another client on the phone, "Yes, I got that report done and will get it to you this afternoon." and then they mention to you they need to go finish that report, know they will be just as honest with you.  It might actually be OK to work with someone who does not have lots of sales experience or specialize in a particular field of real estate, as long as they are honest with you about that.  Honesty should be the #1 quality of the agent that works for you.  Don't allow yourself to do business with a person who falls on the wrong side of these attributes... look for someone else.

 

Rob Brooks,

Owner, Rob Brooks Realty