A real estate agent is the person you hire to help you buy or sell your home. Beyond that simple statement of information, many people do not know what working with an broker means and what it entails. Here is a detailed list of how to successfully work with a residential realtor. |
Understand the Legal Restrictions Real estate brokers are bound to strict anti-discrimination rules by the Fair Housing Act. This means that an agent cannot use or provide information about race, color, religion, national origin, gender, handicaps, or familial status of owners or neighbors of a property they are selling.
So do not ask them to find you a home next to a particular church or ask them about the racial makeup of a certain neighborhood. That kind of information is considered discriminatory and it is illegal for a broker to help you select a home based on any of the mentioned factors.
Realize that Agents Are Not Free Most residential real estate agents work on commission. That means they are not paid by the hour or by the visit for their time with you. They get paid a percentage of the home sale when the deal closes. So to work most successfully together, you should develop a relationship of trust with your realtor and not be overbearing in your requests.
Common Courtesy Goes A Long Way Just as you expect your agent to be considerate of your time, you should pay your realtor the same respect by being punctual to appointments and let them know as soon as possible if you need to cancel a showing. And a quick call is always appreciated if you know you are going to be late for an appointment.
Talk Openly About Your Expectations Realtors are used to working with all sorts of people and personality types on residential real estate deals. That means that they are usually very accommodating, but they need to know what your expectations and preferences are. You need to tell him the best way to communicate with you and what the best times are to contact you.
You should also make it clear whether you want to simply meet your broker at all showings or have them pick you up and drive you there. You should feel comfortable enough talking about anything you are not happy with and finding reasonable solutions.
Let Your Agent Fully Represent You There is a whole system of protocol in the residential real estate business. This typically includes bringing your agent with you to open houses. Going alone is considered a sign that you are not a serious contender for the sale. If you cannot bring your realtor to a particular open house, at least present their card to the host to show that you are represented and have taken the proper steps to start the home buying process.
Under no circumstances should you start talking figures and prices with the hosting agent; that is a broker's job and your questions will probably not be well received from the hosting agent and your agent will likely be miffed that you didn't let her handle that arena.
The main key to a successful relationship with your agent is communication. Open communication will help you understand the bounds of the agent's job and help your realtor understand your real estate desires.
Looking to buy or sell a home in Baton Rouge? A Baton Rouge area realtor subscribes to a strict code of ethics and will take you through all the steps of buying or selling real estate. Find online resources for Louisiana homebuyers and sellers at www.realestatelouisiana.com.
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