All Things Real Estate: Do your homework to hire a broker

All Things Real Estate: Do your homework to hire a broker
Phil Raices

People many times become enamored with the size of a company as a prerequisite to hiring an agent. Then others will check the reviews and testimonials. Then there are times when one will hire a friend to sell the most valuable asset they own. Knowledge, the number of years in the business and experience should be the most critical and overriding factors instead of the size of a company as a determining factor.

Even when checking reviews and testimonials, look for words that are used to describe their experience with the broker, such as their expertise, knowledge, accuracy of information, smoothness of process, minimizing the stress of the transaction that the agent provided. Also, would they use them again? The review in and of itself is extremely crucial for current and future business. However, the words used to describe how the broker assisted in the sale are crucial to be able to describe how smart and knowledgeable the Broker was when assisting the seller(s) and/or purchasers(s) and even renter(s).

Today real estate transactions are a very complicated and stressful process if not handled properly. It is no longer a cake walk to the closing and the bank. The Broker has to know what they are doing, have the perception, learning and reasoning and a strong foundation in the process in order to earn a commission. Knowing staging and construction as well as being a creative “idea person” and problem solver is a must to provide alternatives and solutions to issues that come up during the transaction.

In addition, being an excellent listener and also learning, absorbing, practicing and applying one’s knowledge become tantamount in providing the necessary and required expertise to service today’s clients in the fashion that they need, want and expect. Some may forget the amount of money being spent and take for granted what is involved in a transaction, whether selling, investing, purchasing or even for a renter just starting out with their first move out of their parents’ home. Guiding consumers through the sometimes tricky process requires the expertise of a full-time seasoned professional.

The knowledge, patience and fortitude to stick with a client in finding a home, with the right style, interior accoutrements,  location and school district is part and parcel of performing our job well. However, one’s expertise, being transparent and upfront will go a long way in educating clients as to what is realistic or not in their search.

There should always be discussions about determining the most important items that a buyer needs based strictly on their budgets. Sometimes their “wants” are what we might call “champagne tastes and beer pockets.” But every once in a while, we’re able to find one of those “wants” in a home purchase. However, our job is to guide our clients to become more realistic in their outlook and recognize that trade-offs are absolutely necessary if they want to find a home. It may not be the only home they will purchase in their lifetime, so it’s important to convey this fact so they can become more cognizant as to what is feasible on their wish list.

Competition for the limited number of homes currently available is still strong, until the snow and severe weather hits and potentially slow the number of buyers looking. But what’s extremely crucial and should be focused on is to be able to lock in a low interest rate to keep the monthly cost as low as possible. Better to be in a homeownership position than to continue to stay in a rental providing the landlord with all the benefits.

My thought is that timing always equals luck and there are times you can be in the right place at the right time to enable that to occur. Proper research, marketing, following up and staying in touch with current and prior clients and connections can assist the Broker in becoming lucky in finding that one home that your client will consider. To become an expert requires years of study, training, trial and error, being disciplined in one’s actions and sacrificing time in order to attain a position to assist consumers in their search for their most valuable possession that they will own in their lifetime. I

t is not a simple undertaking and the majority drop out of the business as they are not equipped to do whatever is takes to survive and thrive to earn a living. So when hiring a Broker or agent observe their motivation, experience and knowledge. Go through an interview process as if your future wealth depended on it so you feel most comfortable that the fit is beneficial and that you have hired the most qualified individual to represent you whether selling, investing, or purchasing.

Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave Suite 180 in Great Neck. He has 40 years of experience in the Real Estate industry and has earned designations as a Graduate of the Realtor Institute (G.R.I.) and also as a Certified International Property Specialist (C.I.P.S). For a “FREE” 15 minute consultation, a value analysis of your home, or to answer any of your questions or concerns he can be reached by cell: (516) 647-4289 or by email: [email protected] Just email or snail mail (regular mail) him with your ideas or suggestions on future columns with your name, email and cell number and he will call or email you back.

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