Before you start the process of buying a home, start by researching to find the best Realtor for you to help buy a home. This does not mean the one that has the most sales, or has billboards around or even has the most listings. You need to find the right Realtor for “you” to buy a home.
You are unique, your circumstances and goals are unique. You need a Realtor that understands them or has experience in your goals, like relocation for example, or horse properties, maybe luxury homes.
If you just want Realtors that open doors well they are a dime a dozen, but when push comes to shove, you may not get the support you hoped for, guidance, help, advice, connections and all the things important to you! You wanted a door opener and that’s all you got.
Sadly there are too many door openers who just want a quick sale and are not vested in your success, only the paycheck.
Realtors with The Most Sales
So what! How does this benefit you? What purpose do any one of those sales have for you? What do numbers mean…..not much except to that Realtor. A Realtor with the most sales is the least likely to give you the personal experience you likely crave.
That Face on the Billboard
Means nothing to you. All it means is they flaunt their sales as a way of drawing you in. Have you heard the phrase “What’s in it for me?” WIIFM. That billboard tells you nothing.
Consider this. Successful Realtor can afford billboard, so pays for one, attracts more buyers, ends up with too many clients and provides less assistance to the ever growing list of people they are working with.
Realtors with the Most Listings
You want to buy a house, right? Why chose a listing agent whose legal job having been hired by each seller, is to get the highest and best deal possible for the seller, not for you! How, tell me how anyone who wants to buy a house thinks this is right for them? (Ask any attorney if you don’t believe this is a bad idea!)
So What’s The Better Way To You Find the Best Realtor
Aim for a Happy Medium
Look for a Realtor that has a manageable list of current active clients. Find one that works full time, has several years of experience, has the knowledge of your circumstance. How?
Research The Internet, Shop Online
After all is that not what we do these days? The beauty is you can do a lot of research without picking up a phone or sending an email. Anonymity is a beautiful thing!
What’s your circumstance? Are you relocating, buying a horse property, need a condo with clubhouse, want new construction? Start by researching the internet and ask the question. Examples, type in “Who is the best Realtor for relocation in Barrington” or “luxury home buyers agent South Barrington” or your situation. Ignore the ads, move down to the real (organic) results and click the first 2 or 3. Read the websites, look for testimonials that match your circumstance, see why the Realtor may be your best choice or not.
How much information does the Realtor provide, listings are a must but local information, schools, market reports can be helpful to you too.
Generalization or Specialist?
- Residential or commercial?
- Seller side or buyer side?
- Niche markets? Types of Transactions or Property
- Local Realtor or one that covers vast area?
In real estate experience shows that “home” buyers want a residential Realtor, “commercial” property sellers want a commercial experienced Realtor. The transactions are different.
Within residential there are Realtors that work with both sellers and buyers and those that specialize in one side. Then there are Realtors that specialize in just a few areas. For home buyers I recommend always finding a broker that focuses on one side of the deal. Find someone in the area you want to buy and even better that specializes in what you are looking for. Aside from having more experience in your goals, they’ll have less clients to worry about at a time. Your expectations are to be the top client and you’ll get it.
Full Time or Part Time
This choice is yours but I would at least ask any Realtor on your short list, which they are. Part time Realtors as buyers agents may not be available when you need them to be. If they are working another job, are your calls going to go to voicemail all the time? Does it matter to you? Remember that part of our job is to be your go between. We co-ordinate with inspectors, listing agents, attorneys and loan officers throughout the whole process and can often get things done when others cannot.
Experience and Level of Licensing
We are all rookies to start but will a newly licensed Realtor understand the nuances of buyer agency when they have only transacted one or two deals, or none? A license is one thing but the reality is getting a license does not expose us to how to write or explain a contract let alone negotiating strategies or rattling on doors when needed. All of that comes with experience. In Illinois you can select either a broker who is licensed to sell or lease real estate, or you can select a Managing Broker who’s level of licensing allows them to sponsor other brokers and run a company.
Other Credentials – In our world there are many education certifications we can do for specialist markets. For most people it does not mean anything. However if your Realtor continues education after getting their license it does show commitment to the profession. For example an ABR is a buyer’s agent who certified as an Accredited Buyers Agent. This certification requires actual closed transactions to qualify. Corinne has the certification with specialty in relocation which she scored 100% on because relocation is something she excels at and has personally done many times, both nationally and internationally!
Corinne has several other accreditations including Graduate Realtor Institute, Certified Negotiation Expert, and internet E-Pro. All these offer a good round additional education in working with buyers and especially relocation clients.
And of course Corinne is the Managing Broker of Barrington Realty Company, her license is the highest available in real estate in IL.
While some Realtors are just about churning out as many sales as possible, others are more interested in providing a service tailored to each client. Only you can decide what you prefer and what you would like us to be for you!
Do our characters mesh well? It’s just impossible for us all to like everyone. Some say it does not matter, to me it does. My job is to serve you well but if we don’t get along very well it makes my job more difficult and our relationship during your home purchase must NOT be strained at all. So if you don’t think we gel well, please understand I will not be offended.
Volume of Current Clients
Ask any Realtor how busy they are. One or two sales a year? 12-20 a year or 300! Assess how much time we will have for you. The only home search and purchase that matters to you, is yours, it’s just one and a very important one!
Team or Individual Service
Anyone churning out 300 sales a year is not going to be able to do it on their own. Likely they’ll have team members. Once you are in contract you may never hear from your Realtor again! Is that what you want? Or would you like the Realtor that has time for all their clients and will take your calls or return them personally.
Some transactions and clients will use technology more than others. Find out if your Realtor can text message, email, use digital signatures as needed and have the services/tools ready to go. You might be surprised how many still rely on fax machines until 5pm when the office closes and then you have to wait an entire weekend to get things done.
Does The Company Matter?
No. If you understand that all Realtors are in business for themselves but have to hang their hat somewhere, which essentially means finding a Managing Broker to sponsor them; you should realize the company may provide things to a Realtor but it does not provide you with anything.
That said I would always suggest you hire a Realtor that knows the area you want to buy in. If you don’t know which area, I suggest you do that research first.
Our company name is Barrington Realty for one reason alone. Corinne Guest, Realtor and Managing Broker serves the majority of her clients in the Barrington area.
Are Any Testimonials Available?
Can the buyer’s broker you are considering provide testimonials applicable to your circumstance? Are they published? Are there more than one?
Active and successful Realtors will have no issue asking clients for testimonials and publishing them. Look for information that helps you match the Realtor with your circumstances and goals.
Realtors as People
All of us like to align ourselves with like minded people. It usually makes for stronger relationships when we have things in common. We don’t have to be mirror images of each other and I’ll keep politics out of this because they should stay out!
When interviewing us, find out a little about us as people. You’ll be surprised at the common threads that instantly increase your comfort level.
- Are we dog or cat lovers.
- Where do we go on vacation.
- What do our kids do.
- Do we exercise and how.
- Have we relocated, been a first time buyer, bought a luxury house or renovated one.
It’s the little things that can bond us as people.
Is It Working Out?
So you did everything you could to match yourself with the right Realtor, but it’s not working out. As a buyer you are not making progress, your Realtor is not being honest with you, they are not available as you would like, or you simply just clash. What can you do?
Can you fire your Realtor? Follow the link for a longer article but the answer is yes you can. Sometimes with all the good intents in the world, relationships don’t work very well. Neither your Realtor or you should be expected to continue any relationship that does not have mutual trust and respect. Buying a home is a transaction but who you transact it with can have a difference on both the outcome and also your experience. Make it a good one!
Starting over can seem like an insurmountable task but it’s well worth it to make sure your home buying experience keeps on track.
Second Realtor Selection
When selecting another Realtor to work with, be honest about why the first relationship was not working. An experienced Realtor can identify with the information you provide and should be able to offer solutions or guidance about how they will make sure you do not get a repeat experience. They may need to get tough with you and let you know it was not a one sided problem. If they cannot offer honesty and solutions, move on!
As I have said before, any agent can open doors but buyers need more that that. You won’t know what the bumps along the way are going to be, but a good real estate broker will have had those experiences many times and should have solutions. This is why experience counts for you, a lot.
Contact The Best in Buyers Agents in Barrington IL.
We wish you all the best in finding the best Realtor for you when you are ready to buy a property. If you happen to be looking in the Barrington, Inverness or Lake Zurich zip code areas, please call Corinne for an interview at 847-363-3686. She has helped many buyers who needed to find a second agent, many relocation buyers and local buyers looking to buy in the country suburban villages of Barrington.