There are so many assumptions and myths about the real estate industry. Everyone has a good experience or a bad experience from which they base their opinion of the whole industry. Yes, traditionally the industry wasn’t very regulated. Unfortunately, it was easy to become an agent who was only interested in ‘wheeling and dealing’. Ethics wasn’t really part of their agenda. Today, though, regulators have brought in laws and standards. You can therefore even ask to see any Vancouver Realtor professional's license for reassurance.
Now that you don’t have to worry about industry standards, what else should you consider when choosing a Realtor Vancouver professional? You should first understand what you’re looking for and what your priorities are. Every Realtor Vancouver professional has a slightly different style and focus. You’ll be able to choose much more easily if you understand your needs.
● Physical local real estate offices
● Online websites, rankings and blogs
The first thing to do is walk around the area where you’re either selling or buying. It's easy to walk into any of the real estate offices and get a sense of their style straight away. You should also of course look online and go through web listings to get a sense of prices and availability. However, physically going to Open House Days can also help you see agents in action and get a sense of their approach and knowledge.
As you might expect, there are several websites that do Realtor Vancouver rankings. Interestingly, most of these websites ask for your details and more information about whether your buying or selling. Essentially, they’re trying to tailor their rankings for you. However, it’s surprising that they need your name and email in order to do that.
Having said that, some websites such as PropertySpark and RankMyAgent list individual agents according to reputation, social media presence and other performance data. Alternatively, you can also look at FeedSpot's top Vancouver real estate blogs to give you a different view.
Once you’ve narrowed it down to your top 3 or 5, you can start looking at the top themes listed below:
● Marketing / Research Strategy
● Expertise and Specialty
● Testimonials and References
It’s important to understand what tools Realtor Vancouver professionals use. These tools can either promote your property or help you find your perfect purchase. Do they use social media as well as their network? How do they find out about listings and do they tend to know about property before listings become market knowledge? Do they host Open House Days? How do they negotiate on your behalf? Make sure you understand their approach and strategy. Does it have a solid foundation or is it more of a ‘shoot from the hip’ approach? This is about understanding how they define ‘right price’ for the market rather than simply applying the highest price.
Is the Realtor Vancouver professional you’re talking to tend to deal with houses, condos, apartments or land? Of course there are some overlaps but where is their comfort zone? How many years’ experience do they have in the market and how do they continue their own development? It might sound weird asking these questions. However, at the end of the day, you want the best. No one will judge you for finding out your real estate partner’s career.
As always when dealing with people, it’s helpful to know how they plan to update you. Perhaps they do weekly calls or emails? Alternatively, you might prefer a daily check-in depending on your timing and urgency. Also, what kind of information can you expect and what do they need from you? Whether you’re buying or selling, there’s a clear process. You should understand how quickly they respond to changes as well as how they update things.
Naturally, you shouldn’t just take their word for it. You can therefore ask for details of previous clients that you can talk to. All Realtor Vancouver professionals will have a portfolio and list of previous clients. If they don’t feel comfortable sharing this information then you have to wonder what they’re hiding. Most people enjoy the opportunity to share a good experience with someone they've worked with. Even the most confidential clients will have some words to say.
Dealing with any professional industry can be overwhelming because we don’t have the technical knowledge and terminology. However, you can relax knowing that it’s a regulated industry. There are laws that exist to protect you and to provide you with a transparent process. It’s then down to methodology and style.
The above themes give you a starting point. Then, at the end of the day, ask yourself if you could imagine working with that person. Can you build a relationship of trust and mutual respect? Do they have the right mindset and attitude whilst being able to challenge your ideas and get you thinking differently? If yes, then you have probably found yourself the perfect partner to work with. So relax and enjoy the process.