I'm in California so my answers will be state related.
Go to open houses and meet agents there.
Ask friends, family and co-workers for recommendations.
You can also get recommendations from other agents who are great resources.
Here are some Questions:
- Do They work full time which includes weekends.
- Are They a member of the local and National Realtor Associations and local MLS
- They should have an active license and you can look up the status on line .
- How long have they been in Real estate? How many buyers (closed) have they worked with?
- Do they work on a team? Do they have a mentor?
- Do they have a car (you'd be surprised)
- What real estate education do they have
- When they are not with a client, what does their day, week look like?
- Do they specialize in the area you are looking? House, Condo, type of property?
- How would they handle a for sale by owner
- How familiar are they with Investment Properties, Short Sales and Bank Owned properties
- How familiar are they with the contracts?
- What % of their sales are with buyers?
- How many active buyers are they currently working with?
- Do they also list properties? If so, how many listings are they servicing now?
- What other experience do they have which adds to their knowledge homes, and the market place?
- Do they carry insurance, Errors and Omission, Auto, Other?
- Besides the MLS what else will they do to help find your home?
- What is their philosophy of negotiations
- How will the communicate with you? How often?
- Will you sign a Buyer/Broker agreement?
- What does their list of service providers look like? How have they screened those providers?
- Did they get their Real Estate education on Line, in College?
- Do they have any other certifications?
I'm sure there are other great questions out there. I would look for the following qualities.
- I like and Trust them
- They have the education, experience and skill in the area, contract, and people skills.
- They have referrals
- They will go above and beyond
- They work full time
- They communicate in a manner which fits my needs (tell them communication to me is.....)