When dealing with any real estate agent or company many customers are naturally very sceptical and doubtful of some offerings. There seems to be a slight stigma associated with them, leaving the majority of people questioning their authenticity when purchasing or selling their homes. The best thing you can do to be prepared for an encounter with a real estate agent is to research the area, housing prices and understand your specific requirements. In some cases, this alone is not enough, but there are some tips you can undertake to help you get a better deal. Below are our ten top tips to help you secure a better deal from a real estate agent.
1. Get Pre-approval
This is a very important step that can save you a lot of heartache in the end. Before you have even reached the stage of making an offer on a home, you must get pre-approval from your bank or lender. This will allow you to understand how much you can actually borrow, making your real estate search easier, but also help you to waste less time with an agent and incurring more fees. Not only will this make your search easier, it can prove to the agent you are working with that you are serious and they will give you more attention too.
2. Understand your bargaining strengths
Your bargaining strengths are your main asset when working with any real estate agent, at the end of the day it is you that will help them score their commission. You should be getting as much information out of them in the first instance to help you secure your potential home or to help sell one. If they allude to the idea that the sellers are looking for a fast sell, will be open to a drop in the price or any caveats that can help make you a more attractive buyer you will have the upper hand. Whilst this sounds simple, some estate agents are reluctant to share this information so you must be firm.
3. Know your limits
In some instances real estate agents may be trying to get rid of an undesirable property, or upsell you a home that is not within your budget. Remember to stick to your limits, be that geographically, monetary or based on the specific features that your home must have. This can be said for selling your home too, they may try to get you to reduce the price of your home to make it more appealing, you do not have to do this if you believe it is not the right thing to do. Stick to your guns and know your own limits at all costs.
4. Keep cool
Buyers or sellers that come off too keen and eager to get rid or purchase a property will ultimately get ripped off, or at least be way more susceptible to doing so. Keeping a cool head whilst speaking with your realtor and being rational will pay off massively when it comes to the sale. If a real estate agent can pick up on your excitedness they may be more inclined to offer or pitch you homes that aren’t actually to your taste or within your desired remits.
5. Shop around
Whilst this may sound obvious, a lot of people are quick to use the closest or more responsive real estate agents first. Remember to shop around and really get to know the company and agent you decide to work with. Going for the first hit on google, or your local branch, can be a really risky venture and you could be missing out on some hidden gems through your laziness.
6. Build a rapport with the agent
Once you have found to right realtor for you, it is important to get to know them and let them know exactly what you want. Whilst this is a given, a lot of customers find it hard to articulate what they want and build a working relationship with their real estate agents. How are they ever going to find you your dream home or sell your home without understanding your expectations.
7. Enquire about negotiation propositions
It is a natural conclusion that once you have explained what you want and gotten to know your realtor that they would look to get you the best results. This too can come with the possible outcome of negotiating a lower price, or better terms. There is an art form to negotiations, you should look deeper into the reasons why a property is on the market and see if there is any way to bargain with the sellers.
8. Geographical research is key
Taking the time out to conduct some serious and fact-finding geographical research is really important. This can be the difference of securing a really good home, to a mediocre one due to the area. A lot of buyers think that a certain area will be perfect for them, but when they move there they are unhappy. Take the time to find the right location, then look for a home.
Buying and selling homes are some of the most stressful activities that anyone will ever have to go through. Remember to relax consider all your options and make the right decisions before purchasing your home, or selling one. A lot of bad decisions are made due to stress and worry, realtors can sense this too and may try to influence your decisions in these times.
10. Refusals are not the end
In fact, they are just the beginning, refusals allow you to go back with another offer and reconsider your options. Many buyers will see this as a failure, but your realtor should be hot with the retorts for this outcome. A good real estate agent will be able to help you come back from this quite easily or offer you similar properties because they can understand your needs better. If they are not doing this, then you may want to consider going with another agent.
These ten tips have been devised to help you get the best returns from your realtor. There are other techniques that have helped many customers, but the general premise is to be researched, relaxed and ready to fight for what you want. If you have made the right choice in a real estate agent, then you are already way ahead of the curve. Focus on what you want and stick to your guns as a main priority.