We’ve discussed the changing role and the importance of an agent in the home buying process. But where do you find one?
Family & Friends
The most common way to find a real estate agent is by asking around in your network. Someone you know might know someone who recently bought a house, and if they had a good experience, they would introduce you to the agent they had used.
This entails that you have a network that buys properties, and one that had a previous good experience with an agent. If you already tried this method and weren’t successful, you aren’t alone!
If you live in a small market, you might find that this method works great for you. You would have walked by one of those fancy real estate offices with the bold signs and a bunch of fliers listing the properties that are on sale.
You could walk in and state your intent of purchasing a property. The front desk should see that you’re connected with the right person to chat with based on the neighborhood and budget you’re interested in.
If you prefer a more modern approach to finding an agent, you have a ton of online options to choose from.
Most property search sites (like Zillow, Redfin, Realtor.com, etc) will list buyers agents whom you can contact if you’re interested in properties. These agents usually market themselves on these sites to grab your attention, so while you might get really lucky with finding an amazing agent right from the start, you might want to shop around till you find one that you are comfortable working with.
There are also startups like Homelight which help you find the best-rated agents in a neighborhood, so that might be a good place to start as well.
PS: Another way buyers find real estate agents is through open houses. We didn’t cover this because if you aren’t careful, you can end up getting into a messy situation of dual representation (or conflict of interest). While looking for a real estate agent, we’ve described the 4 things you ought to pay attention to so that you get the best home buying experience.