How to Find a Real Estate Agent

How to Find a Real Estate Agent

Miami beckons with its captivating beauty and wealth of opportunities. Whether you're a local hoping to make the most of the competitive market or a newcomer wanting to put down roots, knowing how to find a real estate agent is the key to unlocking Miami's real estate treasures. Before you start making plans, follow this guide to ensure you partner with an expert agent who can help you buy or sell your Miami home with ease.

Start from the beginning

Before embarking on your search for a real estate agent, you’ll want to understand your needs and goals in buying or selling a property.

If you’re buying, what’s your budget? Do you have a preferred neighborhood to relocate to? If you’re selling, what are you hoping to get for your home? When do you need to close the deal? From there, you’ll want to look into the local market to familiarize yourself with what’s out there. Look for an agent with a strong record of successful sales and fantastic testimonials. You’ll want to put together a list of questions to ask each agent so you can be sure you’re hiring the right one. Remember that a competent real estate agent can make a significant difference in your buying or selling experience, so invest time in selecting the right one for your goals.

Are real estate agents the same as brokers?

A real estate agent works directly with buyers or sellers during the real estate process. They’re the professionals you’ll be working the most closely with, and they usually work for a real estate broker. A broker has additional education and experience that allows them to work independently or hire agents to work beneath them. Brokers often have other responsibilities as well, like managing their own real estate firm, overseeing transactions, and mentoring agents.

What about Realtors vs. real estate agents?

The terms “Realtor” and “real estate agent” are often considered the same, but they actually represent different professionals. A real estate agent is a licensed professional who helps buyers and sellers with their transactions. However, a Realtor is a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Members can be real estate agents, brokers, property managers, and even appraisers, but by becoming a Realtor, they pledge to abide by the NAR's Code of Ethics, which enhances consumer protection and professionalism within the industry.

Working with a buyer’s agent vs. a listing agent

As you might expect, a buyer's agent represents the interests of the buyer, helping them with everything from finding suitable properties and negotiating strong deals to guiding them through the closing process. On the other hand, a listing agent represents the seller and is responsible for marketing their property, attracting potential buyers, and navigating negotiations.

Finding the right real estate agent

Now that you know more about the different types of professionals in the industry, let’s talk more about how to find a real estate agent. It’s always wise to start with personal recommendations or an online search for top-ranked teams. As you search, you’ll want to ask yourself a few questions.

What experience do they have?

Always consider an agent’s years in the industry, the number of transactions they have handled, and their specialization. Experience brings greater knowledge of Miami housing market trends, more finely tuned negotiation skills, and a more comprehensive network of home stagers, appraisers, and other professionals that can benefit you in your real estate endeavors.

Do agents work with assistants who can help me?

Some real estate agents have assistants or team members to support them with administration or scheduling tasks. You’ll want to inquire about the level of involvement the agent's assistants will have and how they will contribute to your overall experience. Will you still be in direct contact with your agent, or will you go through their assistant every time?

How much should I expect to pay in commission?

Agents typically earn a commission based on the final sale price of a property, paid for by the seller. The specific commission percentage can vary and is usually negotiable, but you can expect at least 2.5% to 3% per agent.

Should I check reviews from past clients?

Checking an agent's reviews from past clients can help you assess their reputation and quality of service. Look for testimonials from sources beyond just the agent’s website. If you’re coming up short, ask potential agents if they have previous clients you can get in touch with.

Searching for a buyer’s agent

Finding homes that suit your budget

A reliable buyer's agent will always keep your budget in mind, searching diligently for homes that align with your finances. They should consider your desired features and location preferences and save you time and effort by ensuring each house they show you is within your price range.

Negotiating a better price

A skilled buyer's agent will also have excellent negotiation skills, working tirelessly to secure the best possible deal for you. In a competitive market like Miami, your agent should be skilled at negotiating purchase prices and advocating for necessary repairs or concessions.

Setting realistic expectations around inventory and competition

Your buyer's agent should never sugar-coat the realities of the Miami real estate market. Their job is to keep you aware of available homes in your desired area and the level of competition you may face from other buyers so that you can make informed decisions along the way.

Searching for a seller’s agent

Marketing your home effectively

A reputable seller's agent has to understand the importance of effective marketing. With the majority of the home search taking place online, seller’s agents need to utilize tools like professional photography and targeted advertising to make sure your home is seen by the right buyers.

Suggesting value-boosting improvements

A skilled seller's agent will also provide valuable insights on improvements or repairs that can enhance your home's value and appeal. Your agent can guide you on cost-effective upgrades or staging techniques to make your home as marketable as possible.

Setting a realistic listing price

A seller's agent will be skilled at conducting market analyses to determine a realistic, accurate listing price for your property. By considering factors like recent comparable sales and your home’s unique features, they’ll keep your listing from lingering on the market too long.

Ample experience in the area

Finally, a seasoned seller's agent will be highly familiar with comparable listings and recent sales in your area, allowing them to position your home competitively in the market. Their extensive expertise will enable them to navigate pricing strategies effectively and attract potential buyers to your beautiful property.

Partner with Eliad Cohen for the best results

It’s no secret that knowing how to find a real estate agent can take some trial and error. To save time and skip the headaches, partner with Miami expert Eliad Cohen. With his expertise in the local market and tireless dedication to helping clients meet their goals, Eliad will deliver a personalized approach to your real estate journey. So, don’t wait — get in touch with Eliad Cohen today.

*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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