To find agents, prospective agents: Use REALTOR.com to view agents in the neighborhood. When you go into an office talk with ALL the agents not just with the floor agent. Keep all your antennae out and ask questions to determine honesty and intelligence. Dialog. There is no cookbook so use your senses.
When you dialog talk about VA, listen carefully. Specialties(badges) indicate but they DON'T guarantee. Most real estate "specialists" are generalists who think they're strong in "X".
One of the nice features about Trulia is the forum allows individuals to get to know agents before meeting them. How the think...What they value....How they operate...what they believe etc.simply by participating in Trulia's Q & A segment.
This is a real vehicle for buyers and sellers to gather valuable insight that goes far beyond asking or responding to real estate questions. This is an opportunity that people can use to help themselves gather important information about the people they will be working closly with during one of their most important "life experiences."
If you are pre-approved with a mortgage broker you do not have to be pre-approved again.
Please feel free to call me if you have further questions....Good Luck...Maria Weiss 858-248-0863
The only fear you need have is of fear itself, to coin a phrase. Finding a buyer's agent can be difficult but is well worth your effort, think in terms of thousands of dollars. Bonnies says "interview", she's right. Friends and associates will always recommend the agent they've used if that agent didn't kick them in the face - hard. You're looking for more than simply not harming you, you want help.
There is no option but to seek someone you don't know. If it hurts to meet and appraise agents understand that the choice is to arbitrarily select someone. Fear of failure is always there but it shouldn't be a driver. Trust in your intuition, it helps you select dentists, lawyers, gardeners and all the other folks you deal with.
Both Scott and Bonnie are right about your mortgage broker.
Shoot me an email with your general information and I will have an agent contact you asap to schedule an interview. I work for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, we have one of the largest referral networks in the Country, and would be happy to assist.
The best way to find an agent that you will be comfortable with is to INTERVIEW SEVERAL. Talk to the ones who were recommended to you and ask them specific questions that YOU know are important to YOU! Be honest with them and let them know that you are interviewing several agents to find the "perfect match". You don't have to switch lenders just because you switched agents-unless you feel you will find a better package elsewhere.