Our home is one of the biggest investments we make in our life. Buying or selling a home is definitely not an easy task because we want to maximize this investment. Since we don’t make such transactions on a daily basis, we want to make sure that everything goes perfectly. As such, it is necessary to choose the right Realtor.

The real estate agent can make a big difference in how fast you find or sell a house, the price you pay or receive and the smooth completion of the transaction. The agent you select must have desired skills, knowledge, and personality traits to add value to your real estate experience. Therefore, you need to do a bit of your own due diligence to make sure you end up choosing the right real estate agent. Whether you’re buying or selling a home, check out these tips to find a great real estate agent.

Get Referrals

Usually, people begin their search for an agent by asking friends, neighbors, and co-workers for referrals. Though it is a good idea to get referrals, but make sure to get as many details as possible about their buying or selling experience with a particular agent. Also, once you get a few names, do proper research and review their website, customer testimonials, and online ratings. Moreover, check out an agent’s listings online. The purpose of doing this is to find out how closely the agent’s listings mirror the property you want to buy or sell. It should be in the same area and price range.

Interview a few candidates

Next step is to interview a few potential candidates before making a final hiring decision. The purpose of doing this is to know how familiar the agent is with the type of property and area of your interest. Meeting and interviewing a few potential realtors gives you the opportunity to learn about their experience, working style, areas of expertise, and level of professionalism. This is the time when you can ask them for a few references. By speaking to some of their past clients you’ll get an idea about what type of home they bought/or sold and what their experience was like with the agent.

Check for the license, credentials, and disciplinary actions

Before hiring a professional make sure he/she has proper state licensing. Verify this information with your state’s regulatory body to ensure that the agent you’re considering is licensed and there’s no disciplinary action or complaints against him. Also, look for an agent with the right credentials. All agents are not the same and you need to consider their training in a particular area. Consider the designations such as CRS (Certified Residential Specialist), ABR (Accredited Buyer’s Representative), and SRES (Seniors Real Estate Specialist) before hiring. It’s better to look for a Realtor as they are real estate professionals who are a member of the National Association of Realtors and subscribes to its strict code of ethics.

Consider experience and expertise

A great real estate agent has years of experience and expertise under the belt. To know how many years of experience the agent has in the industry you may check with the state licensing authority. The agent you choose should have more than five years of experience in the business. Also, the person should be actively engaged in your particular area of interest and price range. You want an agent who has experience buying the type of home that you’re looking for, like a condominium, detached, etc.