How to Interview a Realtor When Buying a Home: 6 Tips

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By Clever Real Estate Updated April 28, 2023


When you’re buying a home, working with the right buyer’s agent can make or break your experience. Your agent can not only help you find a home, but also negotiate a fair offer and provide helpful guidance throughout the closing process. Here’s how to interview and how to find a buyer’s agent when buying a home.

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Choosing a buyer’s agent isn’t rocket science, but it does take some careful consideration. You want to know that whoever is leading your home buying journey has adequate experience in negotiating things like price, repairs, and contingencies, can walk you through escrow, and ensure you don’t miss a beat when it’s time to close.

Clever understands the importance of having options, which is why we can connect you with multiple agents until you find the right one.

Before you hire a buyer’s agent, make sure they can answer these six questions to your satisfaction:

1. How Long Have You Been a Real Estate Agent?

Agents with freshly printed licenses can do a great job. With the right training, mentors, and knowledge of the industry, a new agent may be able to deliver an exceptional home buying experience.

But if you’re not willing to be part of their learning curve, use an experienced real estate agent. Agents learn as they go, and working with one who has been helping home buyers and sellers for years has likely seen a lot of things go wrong (and right) in a transaction.

2. Are You Available for a New Client?

Agents work on commission only, and many of them will accept every bit of business that comes their way, even if they’re stretched thin. Working with a busy agent might be a testament of their skills, but it might also mean they won’t be able to give you as much as time or attention as you need.

Always ask what their current workload looks like and when they might be able to show you some properties. If they seem rushed or struggle to find time in their schedule to meet with you, move on. You deserve an agent that will treat you like a priority, not an afterthought.

» READ: Do Buyers Pay Realtor Fees?

3. What’s Your Typical List Price to Sales Price Ratio?

This number is typically a concern for sellers, but buyers can benefit from knowing how well their agent negotiates. Even in a seller’s market, a good buyer’s agent will be able to negotiate lower than the listing price. Experienced real estate agents will have a track record to prove their expertise and will be happy to share their successes.

Find the best agent for your buying journey.

A Clever Partner Agent will always work with your best interests in mind.

4. What Support or Services Do You Provide?

Buyer’s agents do more than show you properties and negotiate for a contract. They should also provide guidance on choosing a mortgage and lender, scheduling the home inspection, negotiating any repairs after the inspection, and helping you tie up any loose ends to avoid any closing delays.

However, not all buyer’s agents provide this level of support. It’s important to set your expectations upfront and understand how involved your agent will be between the contract and the closing.

5. Why Should I Work with You?

Real estate is a highly competitive industry, and agents know they need to provide more than just the typical offerings. Some agents will offer a home buyer rebate to incentivize the relationship. Others may lean on their experience, track record, or testimonials to show they have the expertise to serve you.

Only you can determine what a satisfactory answer is. They may not give you the most creative answer, but they should be able to highlight their strengths and give you a reason to hire them.

6. Can You Give Me Any References?

Real estate agents thrive on referrals from family, friends, and clients alike. They should be able (and willing) to offer references from clients who can tell you what their experience was like. You can also check online reviews and social media to see what others have said about the agent and their brokerage.

Find an Experienced Real Estate Agent with Clever

For home buyers, it literally pays to partner with an experienced agent. Your agent’s negotiation skills will ultimately determine how much you end up paying for your home, so don’t be afraid to ask about their success stories.

Working with a Clever agent guarantees that you’ll have an experienced agent going to bat for you. Clever only works with full-service agents who are top-rated in their local markets. You'll get an agent with years of experience working for home buyers.

The only difference is that you may receive Clever Cash Back (in certain states). We send eligible buyers a check after closing on a home. And since the seller typically pays the buyer agent’s commission, you’re essentially getting their expertise and services for free.

Connect with Clever today for a no-obligation consultation, and discover how an experienced agent can give you a smooth, seamless home buying process.

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