Before you choose your real estate agent, you will want to make sure they are the right fit for you. Here are some helpful questions you can ask your potential real estate agent and my answers in case you were going to ask me.
1. How long have you worked as a real estate agent? After years of hands-on property management, I got my real estate license in 2013 and worked with a brokerage since 2014.
2. Can you provide references? Yes, investors, property owners, home buyers, and home sellers. Also, a ton of rental clients!
3. Can you help me find other professionals? Yes. I have an entire info-graphic that I had out with professional contacts from contractors to attorneys. I also have a great network of investors that I'd love to pair you with. I’m very active on Bigger Pockets forums.
4.What marketing tools do you use?
•Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, til too & LinkedIn)
•Interactive Email marketing
•Traditional paper marketing the least but it’s usually for a specific task
•Digital Design & Graphic Design - Room Sketcher & CanvaPro
•Video & Photo marketing strategies for every listing.
•Every multifamily or mixed-use sale listing gets its own interactive website.
•Multiple Listing Service (x2) - I use this to list your property, push it out to over 25 different websites and reach every single realtor in over 20 counties in NY & CT
5. What is your initial listing plan? I evaluate, give recommendations on simple fixes for a better return & get dimensions for the floorplan. For multifamily or investment properties I gather and evaluate their documents, income & expense reports and put an offering memorandum together. When the seller's to-do list is complete, I stage (private homes) & then take photos/video. The listing will go up within 3 days of photos being taken. Open houses (covid safe) are held the first 2 weekends. Private appointments are booked through a digital program where I can set criteria and notifications (you decide how involved you want to be). For investment properties, I offer showings 2-3 days a week during specific times. This limits the inconvenience for your tenants.
6. Have you completed any foreclosure or short-sale transactions? No. I'd refer you to another agent on my team for that because I’m not skilled in that area. It’s not common in my area for those listings to reach the open market if they are a good deal.
7. How often can I expect to hear from you? As little or as much as you want. I'm good at reading my clients. If you want twice a week contact, I'm there. If you want to just sign the contract and wait to hear from me until closing (unless there's an issue, I'm there too), How will you keep in touch? I use texting the most and email to make sure there is a paper trail and everyone is on the same board but I call too. Real estate still needs a personal touch.
8. What should I avoid during this process?
• If you're a buyer-Buying anything new. Please keep your finances at status quo until after closing if possible. Also, avoid bouncing all over. Pick 2-3 areas and stick to them.
• If you're a seller, avoid getting complacent. Keep the property in tip-top shape for the duration of the listing period. Also - avoid Zillow estimates. They know nothing about your home or property. This goes for investment or private properties.
• If you’re an investor - avoid going outside of your criteria. The right property will be available when it’s time.
9. What red flags should I look for? This varies for each property.
• Investors - sellers that are not willing to freely give info. They aren’t truly interested in selling at your number.
• Homebuyers - lots of nonpermitted work paired with an unwillingness to remedy it - it’s usually just an inspection & letter. Stagnant water in the yard when it's not expected (after a heavy rain, the start of spring, etc). An inspector that says everything is good - there is always something!
• Sellers - A pushy listing agent - their work should speak for itself and you need to have a good working relationship with them. Your agent should feel comfortable with waiting until your home is market-ready before listing whether that is 2 weeks or 2 days. They should stay in contact with you but not push to list before it’s ready. An agent pushing for you to accept an offer within the first week, one that is only depending on only traditional marketing and one that doesn't want to work for the money - open houses, mixed marketing, video, photos, floor plan & staging.
10. Is there anything else that I need to know? I make sure my clients are gaining knowledge the entire time. Investors and homeowners need to look at this purchase as an investment because it's most likely the largest one you’ll make!