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10 Essential Questions to Ask a Realtor

Written by Cameron Bates

Published on April 10, 2023


10 Essential Questions to Ask a Realtor

We've come up with 10 essential questions to ask a realtor to help you through your home buying or selling process.

To provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date information, we consult a number of sources when producing each article, including licensed contractors and industry experts.

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Whether you're buying your dream home or looking to sell your current one, finding the right realtor can play a huge role in making it a smooth and successful process. A good realtor will guide you through the process from start to finish and help you get the best deal possible.

To find the right realtor, you will need to know what you are looking for – and the right questions to ask. To help you in your search, we’ve come up with ten essential questions to ask a realtor – and what their answers might mean for you.

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How long have you been a realtor?

When looking for a realtor, you will want an experienced professional who has a proven track record and has dealt with the problems that may arise. This knowledge can only be acquired from spending years in the industry and dealing with all different types of homes, buyers, and sellers. This is why a real estate professional with at least five years of experience is preferred

While an inexperienced realtor may still be able to do the job, you can have more confidence with a realtor who has built and developed their knowledge and skills over the years on the job.

Do you work with both buyers and sellers?

Some realtors specialize with either buyers or sellers, and others work with both. While neither agent is definitively better than the other, each holds its own benefits.

A realtor specializing as a buyer or seller's agent will likely have more experience in their particular field and greater knowledge in the area. On the other hand, if an agent works with buyers and sellers, they will better understand the processes and can provide insights from both sides.

Do you focus on particular neighborhoods?

Most realtors will have a handful of neighborhoods that they are most familiar with and have done extensive business in. This means they understand the local market well and can provide helpful information about schools, public transport, safety, and more.

Try and match the neighborhoods you are interested in with those the realtor is familiar with. Doing this could be what fast-tracks your search for a home.

How many clients are you currently working with?

There is a fine line between having too few and too many clients. Too few clients and you might start getting concerned, and too many mean that they might be unable to give you the time and commitment you require.

Remember that the real estate market is quite erratic and fluctuates dramatically. This means that realtors can be flooded with clients one month and struggling to find ones the next.

Are you a full-time or part-time realtor?

While a part-time realtor may have the same level of experience, skills, and knowledge as a full-time buyer’s agent, they will not have as much time to commit to each client. With a part-time realtor, there could also be other issues that arise, such as responsiveness and scheduling.

By going with a full-time agent, you can be more confident that they will have the time to dedicate to you and can work around you rather than you working around them.

How will you contact me and how often?

Knowing how your realtor prefers to keep in touch with you is important. Do they prefer to contact you by email, phone, text, or face-to-face? Try and match how you and the realtor like to communicate. This can lead to a much smoother process and improved working relationships.

You will also want to know how often the realtor will contact you. Things can change quickly during the home buying or selling process, so it’s important that you and your realtor have a steady line of communication and stay on the same page.

How many buyers did you help find a home last year?

This question shows how successful the realtor was in their endeavors last year. While there is no perfect number of real estate transactions to achieve, you will get an idea of how the realtor operated in the previous year.

When interviewing a realtor, make sure you ask about the number of sales they actually closed rather than the number of clients they worked with.

Do you specialize in particular types or prices of homes?

Many real estate agents will specialize in dealing with homes of a particular listing price. One of the reasons that they may specialize is that the strategy and marketing plan tend to differ depending on the asking price of the home and the potential buyers. 

You want to make sure that your realtor is well-versed in dealing with homes in your price range, whether or not you are looking to buy or sell.

Can you provide any client references?

When engaging in business with a professional, you should ask for past client references. This is no different from asking for references before hiring a new employee.

Previous clients can provide you with a great insight into the realtor's working relationship with other homeowners, how they communicate during the home-buying process, and how effective they were at completing the job. After talking with a few of the realtor’s recent clients, you should have a much better understanding of how they do business and whether there are any red flags.

Will I be working with you individually or with a team?

It’s common for a realtor to work as part of a larger team. The team often consists of an administrative assistant, a team leader, and multiple realtors. Knowing whether your realtor works solo or as part of a team may change how they communicate and operate.

Choosing a realtor that works solo or on a team will depend on your preferences. Someone that works on a team will have more resources and skill sets, while someone that works solo may be easier to communicate with.

Why picking the right realtor is important

Buying or selling a home can be incredibly stressful and often challenging. It is likely to be the most significant monetary investment of your life, and with any sizeable investment, it's important to have the right person guiding you.

A good realtor will act as an expert guide through the whole process and help you avoid making costly mistakes. A great agent will use their knowledge, experience, and professional network to get you the result you are looking for, whether buying a new home or selling your existing one.

Asking these ten important questions and any others you see fit will help you assess and select the appropriate realtor and get you underway with your property journey.

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Written by

Cameron Bates Content Specialist

Cameron Bates is a Content Specialist at Fixr.com.