There are some questions that can get you into trouble when working with a real estate agent.
Real estate agents are usually good-natured people, very friendly and accommodating, with a cheerful and cooperative attitude. But they’re not made of stone. Even the most jovial professional real estate agent can also get hurt or offended by well-meaning clients.
Open communication is vital to a successful relationship with your real estate agent. But just so you won’t rub them the wrong way, here are 7 questions you should ask when you’re looking to buy/sell a home.
1. “I’m not really sure I can commit to one agent. Is that ok with you?”
Loyalty is a two-way street. If you want to earn it, especially when it involves letting go of your life savings, you also have to learn to give it wholly to your agent.
If he’s going to devote time and effort to ensure a fair deal on your part, give him reason to do so rightly. A buyer’s agency agreement can settle this, making it a win-win situation for both parties.
2. “Can you just wait till I can clear my schedule before you show my home?”
Just like you, real estate agents are busy folks. Learn to be flexible; otherwise, you’re the one who’s gonna limit your home’s exposure to potential buyers.
But if you really want to present during the home viewing, try to back off as much as possible and let the agent do their thing. Plus, buyers tend to feel uncomfortable when you’re constantly hovering over their shoulders.
3.“Can you double-check on what Zillow said?”
However quick, easy, and free Zillow’s Zestimates® can be, the best thing you can do to determine your home’s fair market value is trust your agent’s research and professional experience. Even the website itself is encouraging buyers and sellers to get a comparative market analysis (CMA) from a professional appraiser, so why wouldn’t you?
4. “My mortgage is almost approved. Can we already get going just to save time?”
No agent worth his salt would spend time and effort with someone who doesn’t have an approved loan. And it’s also unfair for sellers, on the other hand, to have to deal with tire-kickers.
Bringing your approved letter alongside your offer creates trust in all parties involved because it doesn’t just show you mean business but that you’re really financially capable of purchasing the property.
5. “I don’t want to bother my Realtor®. Can you just show me the house?”
It is not just an industry faux pas but an insult to your agent as well. Never doubt for one second that your agent won’t want to do his job because if this is the case, then it’s about time to get looking for another one.
Otherwise, don’t go straight to the listing agent without letting your own agent come along.
6. “I’m not really interested in hiring an agent. But can you just show me the basics?”
There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. This applies to time, knowledge and just about anything else in today’s world.
So don’t come knocking by the agent’s office telling them you’re not really hiring them because you don’t want to let them having a chunk out of the payment, and then go off asking to be tutored without charge.
If you want to make the most out of your buying/selling experience, be willing to shell out the necessary cash, especially when it comes to the most important financial decision of your life.
7. “Is it ok to only sell my home to a buyer who is (insert race, gender, religion, etc. here)?”
Not unless you’re living under a rock for the better part of the century, you’d have to be aware of the Federal equal housing laws that prohibits home sellers from discriminating against individuals on the basis of race, sex, religion and other factors.
Your main focus is to get the house sold at a price it deserves in the quickest time possible. Its next owners are none of your business.