Question of the Day: What makes a great buyer's agent

Asked by Trulia, San Francisco, CA Thu Mar 8, 2012

How does a home buyer identify a great agent? What are some key things he/she does?

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Lana Lavenba…, Agent, Grants Pass, OR
Thu Mar 8, 2012
An agent that will answer your questions in a clear, easy manner. One that can help you go through properties to weed out ones that wont work and only show you homes that do. Making sure you are pre-qualified with a lender that knows what they are doing and can get a transaction closed with the least amount of problems. Knowing the area you are looking in to know any special quirks it may have. I hope that helps!
1 vote
Aliz Smith, , Portland, OR
Thu Mar 8, 2012
The ability to represent your client professionally but also in a bull dog manner. Being the kind of agent the client would be if they had a license. Knowing what things to point out to a client when looking for a house, good and bad. Returning phone calls promptly and making sure the contract the client is about to enter in, is iron clad and a protection for their client even if it may not be for the seller. Internet presence & knowledge is very important in today's market.
Below is my professional recommendations from not only clients, but other agents I have worked with and short sale negotiators I have pushed around..
1 vote
Marvin Von R…, Agent, Tigard, OR
Thu Mar 22, 2012
This question was posed several months back and was taken to, I believe, several HUNDRED answers.

The short answer is HIS/HER JOB. If he/she hasnt the experience, dedication and knowledge to do the best job, he/she should be selling shoes at the mall. We could expand this thread for days on everything that makes a good real estate representative. All the normal biggies---honesty, thriftyness, helping old ladies across the street, etc.

Really, the first thing that comes to mind is does the agent actually KNOW ABOUT AGENCY and what it means? How to properly represent one or both parties to a transaction? How about contract law?
Its hard to tell a lay person how to choose a good agent. If the agent explains agency and the lay person doesnt know the rules, how can tey judge if its the correct info? They cant. We would have to teach them all we know for them to be able to judge us.

Referrals are often cited as a good way to judge work. Problem is I can give you 100 people who want to name their next kid after me but NOT give you another two hundred who want me killed on site. And, how do you know the referrals are not really my mom using a pen name? lol

Anyone want to step in and turn this thread, one line at a time, into the base to be used to judge good buyers agents?
0 votes
The Stephen…, Agent, Portland, OR
Mon Mar 19, 2012
Availability is the number one quality in a great buyer's agent. These days everyone is looking for deals, and deals sell quick! You need an agent with electronic signature capability, experience in buying all types of homes - fast.
0 votes
Kimberly Shu…, Agent, Portland, OR
Fri Mar 9, 2012
What a great question! Taking time to sit down with you to really learn what you want to find in a home, not just the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, although important, but what is your daily living like, where do you spend the most amount of time, what can you live with and without, why are those things important or not important to you. When you buy a home you are buying the place that you want to relax in, work in, have fun in, social in, celebrate, etc. An outstanding agent, buyer or otherwise, will peel back the onion to really understand the what and the why to the home you want to find.
0 votes
Douglas Hoppe, Agent, Happy Valley, OR
Thu Mar 8, 2012
Listening to your clients needs for a new home. Also only show them homes that fit those needs. Making
sure that these buyers always are thinking about resale when they purchase a home.
0 votes
Susan Agli, Agent, Bend, OR
Thu Mar 8, 2012
It begins with knowledge, trust and great communication skills. The best way to identify these skills is to ask behavior questions. An example would be, tell me a story about how you demonstrated trust to a buyer. My example would be. I was showing a property with the listing agent present. I knew privacy and quality was important to my clients. They loved, loved, loved everything about the house. I noticed a neighbors large junk yard behind the fence. I pointed this out to them and that killed the deal. The listing agent pulled me aside and said never ever bring up anything negative about a house your clients love. Get the sale. My clients found their perfect house and it did take about 3 more months, but I know they are happy with their decision.

Another question would be, give me some examples of how you communicate with clients and how often. Trust, knowledge and communication skills are the best foundation for building a relationship with a buyers agent.
0 votes
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