For most Americans, buying or selling a home will likely be the largest financial transaction in their lifetime. With this said, advances in technology now allow all of us to have more access to the housing market than ever. For example, simply downloading the Florida Home Search app for your smartphone or tablet will give you access to the entire South Florida MLS! Gone are the days where you would have to meet your real estate agent at their local brokerage office to look through the latest MLS book! So do you really need a real estate agent these days? (Hint: You do if you want to save money and time…)
Benefits of a real estate agent
- Exposure to the MLS. The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a database of all the homes that are currently for sale in a particular area. If you are selling a property, it is important that it is being marketed on the MLS for maximum exposure. This added exposure will typically not only result in a higher sales price, but it should sell much more quickly.
- Negotiation skills. Real estate agents are skilled negotiators. They know how to get the best possible price for you, whether you’re buying or selling a home. They can also help you avoid making any costly mistakes.
- Knowledge of the market. Real estate agents have a deep understanding of the local market. They know what homes are selling for, what repairs are needed, and what the trends are. This knowledge can help you make informed decisions about your home purchase or sale.
- Time savings. A real estate agent can save you a lot of time. They’ll do all the legwork for you, such as scheduling showings, writing offers, and handling the paperwork. This frees you up to focus on other things, such as your job or your family.
- Peace of mind. Buying or selling a home can be a stressful experience. A real estate agent can help you navigate the process and make sure everything goes smoothly. They’ll be there to answer your questions and provide support every step of the way.
Choosing a real estate agent
Now that we have established that hiring a real estate agent is a wise decision, it is important to note that not all real estate agents are created equal. In particular, markets such as here in South Florida are saturated with real estate agents. Unfortunately, many of these real estate agents do not last in the profession and we end up seeing a lot of turnover. So how do you decide on hiring a local, experienced, and knowledgeable real estate agent vs someone that happens to have their real estate license on the side?
- Get referrals from friends, family, or colleagues. This is a great way to find a reputable agent who has a good track record.
- Research the agent’s and/or brokerage’s website and social media profiles. In the year 2023 and beyond, it is expected that a real estate agent will have an online presence. This should come in the form of a website and social media presence. The next step in assessing this presence is to determine whether they are active or not. Even checking the content of a blog such as this one can tell you a lot of how committed the company and/or real estate agent is.
- Interview multiple agents. This will help you compare their qualifications and services.
- Make sure the agent is licensed and insured. This is important to protect your interests.
- Ask about the agent’s fees. Be sure to understand how the agent will be compensated.
- Trust your gut. You should feel comfortable with the agent you choose.
In closing, buying or selling a home is likely the largest financial transaction in your lifetime. For this reason, it is critical that you spend the appropriate amount of time to determine the best real estate agent to hire for your transaction.
Are you looking to buy or sell real estate in the South Florida area? We can help! Contact Natasha at Live South Florida Realty, Inc. today! Also, be sure to download our free Florida Home Search app for your mobile device.