Home Buying in 10973>Question Details

Dee, Home Buyer in Buffalo, NY

How do I pick out the right buyers agent? So many agents these days are not working full time at their

Asked by Dee, Buffalo, NY Tue Apr 8, 2008

agencies because of the declining market and I want someone who has the time to dedicate to finding me a home. Can a part time agent really get the job done these days?

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HI Gail,

I'm afraid that such an advertisement for your services is not permitted on Trulia Voices. Please review our Community Guidelines located at http://www.trulia.com/guidelines/ and check out our Agent Best Practices blog post at the link below for more helpful information.

Best Wishes,

Leslie Taylor
Trulia Voices Moderator
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008

I would suggest a full time buyer's agent but a part-time agent can get the job done, too. It's most important that you find someone who work diligently for you, regardless of how many hours a week they work. Many Realtors do not have set hours, rather we work "around the clock". Find an agent who is sensitive to your needs in particular and is familiar with the area you are looking in.

Good luck!
Web Reference: http://www.wnyhomevoice.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
First, make sure you are working with a Buyers Agent and not a sellers agent. At first discussion, agency disclosure should and must be determined. Then I definitely would work with a full-time agent, why take a chance with a part-time agent. With sales down this year, a good full-time agent HAS the time to invest in you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
Part time agents are part time for a reason, there's still plenty of full time agents who can give you great service. Interview up to three agents and find someone you are comfortable with.
Good luck on your home search, it's a great time to buy.
Michael Doyle Realtor
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
Well that is one of the first things you can ask a local agent where you are looking. I would suggest interviewing several to find the right one for you. I myself am a full time broker and do not know how some that are part-time can do it if they can. If you like I can refer you to a top agent in your area for you to interview with. Our international network handles referrals like this everyday. So if you are having a time finding ones to interview just let me know.

Larry Story
Coldwell Banker Triad
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
That's a good question. I don't believe that anyone should sign an "Exclusive Buyer's Agency Agreement" until they are confident that the agent will be able to provide the level of service that you are looking for. Many Agents will push this agreement right from your first meeting. Don't get pushed or pressured. Regarding Part-time Agents, it depends on their level of committment & schedule. I tend to agree with you that it is harder dfor them in this market.
Web Reference: http://www.RemoRealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 18, 2008

Take the time to explain to the agent candidates what your idea home is, and where it is located. Don't rush, explain the items you attributes the home must have, and the ones you simply prefer. Let the agents know the amount you are approved for, and the amount you want to spend. And then, ask each agent what their plans are for getting you into that home. Do they have contacts in the neighborhoods? Does their brokerage get a lot of listings in those neighborhoods? Can they get you into homes before the open house? Get a sense of their demeanor. Do they get frustrated from being askes so many questions or do they enjoy sharing?

Also, a part time realtor is not so bad, just depends if the part of the day they work is different from the part where you are free to look at homes.

Good luck.
Web Reference: http://www.uterms.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008
Hallelujah, Leslie! Hallelujah
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008

The right buyers agent will make you feel comfortable and you should easily trust them after becoming acquainted. If you don't feel secure you will know that you did not choose the right person. I would recommend asking family, friends and acquaintances about their experiences with agents in your area. Interview several until you find one that you feel will get the job done. I would suggest only signing a one month buyer agency just in case something doesn't work out. If after one month you haven't found your dream home and you feel that your agent has done a great job resign that buyer agency until you do. Some companies (like Century 21) offer what is called a Buyer Service Pledge which holds agents to higher standards. If they don't perform their duties as stated in the pledge you then may "fire" them and go elsewhere.

I will say that my husband and I only work "part time." Neither of us has anything that takes away time from our clients except our children. We work from home more efficiently then if we would be sitting at our office. If we have someone to take care of and appointments to meet we simply find a sitter and take care of our clients. We just refuse to spend the money marketing ourselves and also to involve more than just the two of us in our transactions (meaning we don't have assistants, other team members).

If you just follow the suggestions of all below and these you will have no problem. You should choose who you feel most comfortable with.

Hope this helps you,
Shelley Kefauver
Web Reference: http://www.YourYorkHome.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008
Picking a buyers agent with the technical & personal skills to insure a happy ending is critical. This is not to say a "part time" agent cannot possess the necessary skills and attributes to reach a successful end. You have every right to interview prospective agents and review their skills, background, local market knowledge and also is this an individual I will feel at ease communicating with regarding your home search. Having local market knowledge and finding you the right home is just the beginning. Your buyers agent will be responsible for navigating you through the offer, negotiation, inspection and appraisal process. Making sure your buyers agent has the necessary technical & interpersonal skills can mean the difference between a very pleasant experience and a nightmare! Don't be afraid to do your research.
Web Reference: http://michaelsorenson.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008
The best advice I can give is get a referral from someone you personally know who recently sold or purchased. Friends can be brutally honest. Buying a home is an investment and should not be left to a real estate agent who considers it a hobby. Most part timers do not have the time needed to study the current market to coach buyers and sellers in making good sound decisions. Take Heed. Find a seasoned agent to get the job done right.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 1, 2008
Hi Dee, I am one of those agents who has chosen to return to another profession while maintaining my Real Estate practice, so I think I can give you the best answer from this perspective. One of the obligations that each agent has is to represent the interests of their clients above their own. I found that when the market slowed and my financial security was at risk, it was very difficult for me to keep my clients interests at the forefront. It became a real temptation to push a little harder for a sale, even if I knew that waiting might be a better choice for my client. When I returned to a regular paycheck, this pressure was instantly removed. I can again place the focus of each transaction where it should be - on the client, because I know I have a source of income I can count on outside of the sale.

This will not be a popular answer. In general, as you can see by the answers below, PT agents are sometimes seen in the industry as uncommitted, undisciplined, or just poor salespeople. It is an honest answer, however, and may help you to decide between the two options. I disclose to my clients up front that I have limited availability, and if I will not be able to meet their needs, I refer them to somone in my office who can. I can tell you that I have only had to refer 2 clients to a full time agent within the last 7 months. I currently am working with a pool of 4 sellers and 8 buyers in various stages of the process. I hope this is helpful, best wishes on your search. Stacey
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 26, 2008
Referrals are best. I also think a full time agent would be your best choice, however don't forget that even with a full time agent you will not be their only client.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 26, 2008
Realtors have access to reports that show the number of transactions a particular agent has closed on in the last year. In addition, the report breaks down how many sellers versus buyers that they closed. I would choose a realtor with 20+ transactions a year. Just remember not to sign an Exclusive Buyer's Agent Contract until your our confident that you are receiving the level of service that you are looking for.
Web Reference: http://www.RemoRealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 26, 2008
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 9, 2008
A referral is always the best way to go. If you need one please contact me at Space@elliman.com.
Im sure there are some great part time agents but I dont know any that are on call 24/7. If you get a few referrals make sure the person has expierence. Good luck :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
Contact me offline and I will assist you in finding someone. Gail@GailGladstone.com
Web Reference: http://GailGladstone.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 8, 2008
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