Let's talk terms
Whether you are looking for a Realtor in Appleton or anywhere else, it helps to know some of the basic terms. Let's start first with the concept of "Representation" when we talk about finding a realtor. There are buyers agents for buyers, and sellers agents for sellers. This may seem obvious to some of you, but it's still good to remember that distinction. Whether you are selling with a seller's agent or buying using a buyer's agent, your agent is required by law to be "on your team" and put your best interests first and foremost, end of story!
Ok, so if you are a homebuyer, should you contact the seller's realtor directly and not even worry about using a buying realtor? I would avoid it. Remember, anything you say to the seller's agent can be shared with them. So if you say "Gee, my budget is 250k, but I only see myself paying 200k for this house because I'm not fond of the fact that it's close to the highway," the agent is obligated to go back to the seller and share this information with them. This can definitely be contrary to your best interests. Take my advice and hire somebody who represents YOU to help you to navigate this process.
Okay, time to find a realtor. As with any business, start by asking people you know for their recommendations. One of the reasons my team gets so many referrals is that we know real estate is a business that requires honesty, forthrightness, and compassion - as well as the business savvy required to get you the best deal on a property. Look for a realtor with these qualities in your area.
Also, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has a web site with a special search feature that allows you to search for a realtor in Appleton or anywhere else. If you chose to work with a Realtor who is a member of the NAR, you get the added security of working with somebody with this professional accreditation.
the right fit for you
Remember, you can meet with as many realtors as you need to before selecting the one who you'd like to wok with. When interviewing a buyers realtor, you can share what in particular you are looking for and get suggestions from them as far as what neighborhoods they suggest, their advice regarding prices, etc.
Interviewing a seller's Realtor can be a little more daunting in theory, but it really doesn't have to be a pain if you know the right questions to ask. Concentrate on the following questions:
- How much time can the Realtor devote to your home?
- What kind of marketing does the realtor use? Will your home be advertised online?
- Has the realtor sold many homes recently? What's the ratio of list price to sales price?
If you are working with a sellers's agent, oftentimes you'll be asked to sign an agreement for the agent to be the exclusive representative for the home- don't worry, that's a standard and customary practice. As for a buyers agent, it's not really standard to sign an exclusive agreement, though some agents may request that you do!
Looking for a Realtor in Appleton or the Fox Cities? Give Jacci a call or visit www.jaccikonkle.com to see our listings. Happy house hunting!