4 Questions to Ask Your Real Estate Agent Before Buying
So you’re thinking about purchasing a piece of real estate? Great! Well, maybe it’ll be great. It all depends on how good your agent is, and also a little bit on luck and timing. Let’s take a look at a few things you’ll want to ask your real estate agent, before you take the big leap and put in your offer.
1. Are you a full-time agent?
In certain circumstances, you might be willing to deal with a part-time agent, but it’s always helpful to find someone who does real estate and real estate only. Questions and issues can arise at any point (and any time of day or night), and you’re going to want someone you can reach at a moment’s notice, when the transaction starts to near its completion.
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2. How many transactions have you done in the past 12 months?
This is information you can look up, so double-check their answer. Again, you’re looking for a seasoned professional, and if they’re just getting started, you’re going to want to make sure you meet (and trust) their guiding broker. Every agent has a broker (sometimes they are the same person, but not in the case of a new agent), and the intent is that there will be an extra level of oversight and accountability in the transaction.
3. How’s the school district here?
Even if you don’t have children, school districts matter for resale purposes and home values. Regardless of what the agent says, double-check that opinion up against sites that list school data and ask a lot of parents in that district and others. Many quality property listing sites will have that type of data shown on the same page as the real estate listing, which is helpful (and also the sign of a quality agency).
4. How many days on market are the properties in this neighborhood?
This is a question sellers typically ask, but that’s exactly why you want to ask it now. If it’s a high number of days on market, that’s more negotiating power for you as a buyer. If it’s a low number, that’s less power, theoretically. This is also good info to have, in case you need to sell this property in the near future.