Whether you’re buying your first home or selling your 15th, you want the best of the best in a real estate agent. You don’t want someone who just sticks a sign in your yard or doesn’t respond to your phone calls. But with so many agents in the Des Moines area, it’s hard to tell which agent is the best one for you. To help you decide, here are some important things to consider when choosing a real estate agent in Des Moines.
Things to consider when choosing a real estate agent
Work with a licensed agent. In the state of Iowa, all real estate agents must be licensed by the Iowa Real Estate Commission. Agents are required to take 60+ hours of approved coursework, get a background check, and pass the Iowa licensing exam to get their license. All real estate agents must be associated with a licensed real estate broker (unless they have their broker’s license).
Some agents have additional credentials, earned through further coursework, experience, and expertise in particular areas. The National Association of Realtors® has a list of designations and credentials.
Communication from your agent is a crucial part of your success in working together. Things can happen quickly in real estate. And since your agent is your representative and the go-between in the transaction, you rely on them to pass along relevant information and documents. Also, you want an agent that’s skilled in negotiating and will speak up for your best interests. Their communication plays a key role every step of the way.
Their knowledge and experience
Do they know your local market? Some real estate agents focus on particular neighborhoods or towns. Ask the agent if they are familiar with the local area in which you’re buying or selling.
Do they have references? Ask the agent for a list of past clients you can contact. Follow up with those clients to get a feel for their experience.
Are they part of a team? Being part of a team means access to a wider range of knowledge and experience. Teams can pool their know-how to more easily create strategies and solve problems. Plus, if your agent is unavailable, there will always be an agent available to assist you.
Their willingness to work with your particular situation
Some real estate agents specialize in helping investors, some work with seniors, and others might deal mainly with new construction. Find an agent that is familiar with your circumstances.
Your agent should be knowledgeable about your specific market. Ask the agent if they have experience in your price range and neighborhood.
For example, some Des Moines area real estate agents will work mostly in the suburbs, such as Waukee or Ankeny. Others focus on neighborhoods in the metro, such as Beaverdale or Woodland Heights. While many agents in the Des Moines area have experience in many neighborhoods and price points, it never hurts to ask.
Their questions for you
The agent should always have questions for you. If they aren’t interested in what you need, they won’t be able to help you effectively. They should ask what your timeline is, where you’re coming from and where you’re going. The agent should show interest in how much you want to sell your house for and/or where you’d like to buy a home. Their level of desire to learn what your goals are is a vital indicator of customer service.
Whether you’re buying or selling a house, you’re making one of the largest financial transactions of your life. This fact alone should make the integrity and honesty of your real estate agent your top priority.
You must do your homework (all of the items on this list)! Check the agent’s licensure, talk to their past clients, and ask them your questions. See if they’re interested in your goals. All of this should give you a good indication of their character and trustworthiness. A real estate agent should never be pushy or use high-pressure sales tactics.
Trust your intuition. Only hire an agent who answers your questions, listens to you, and can meet all your real estate needs.
Recommended service providers
If you’re buying or selling a house, it’s hard to know which attorney, inspector, or contractor you can trust. Agents have extensive experience with local trade professionals and, eventually, learn which ones are most reliable and trustworthy. If your agent has a list of dependable local companies for you to use, it makes the whole process so much easier.
Whether you’re selling or buying a home, the process can feel intimidating and overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to. At Coluzzi Real Estate, we answer all your questions and simplify the process. We’re there for you every step of the way. Please don’t hesitate to contact us today!
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