Who wants to know who is searching for Real Estate on line, by a show of hands?
You are going to places like REMAX.com, Realtor.com, Homes.com, Zillow.com, Trulia.com, and Redfin.com – All of these sites are good for searching for homes for sale and might be OK with establishing home value.
All the more reasons you might want to consider a source for Listings that is more “local” to the area in which you are doing the research on or the location you want to live. Due to Local Systems being directly from the source and with Rules of Marketing that are punishable by fine or removal of membership. You don’t have to concern yourself with viewing listings for sale that are plugs and not actually on the market for sale. Plus, Local Sources are updated several times per hour versus some other “Countrywide” search sites not refreshing data for days or weeks.
There is nothing like using a local market expert. The Santa Clarita Valley is full of these experts and each one has a different method of operation.
Suggestions on choosing an agent:
Make sure they are members of the Local Board of Realtors in Good Standing – There are some fly by night agents that have been disassociated with the board of Realtors in their areas for breaking themselves against Real Estate Law – Make sure you choose wisely. http://srar.com
Make sure they have cutting edge systems on Follow Up – Have you ever written an offer with an agent and are still wondering what happened,,, 2 years later… (but seriously, if this is you – you might want to rethink your choice) http://www.realestatefeedback911.com/
Explanation and Education is the key – Every contract should be explained line by line without any questions when you are leaving the Realtor’s Office. If you leave the agent’s office, you should be so comfortable that you can call or text with additional questions as they come up. Questions should be encouraged not treated like objections. To view Questions like Objections is a huge mistake when you are potentially making the largest investment of your life (as Paris would say, “ you are not buying a pair of shoes “.
SME’s with all Vendor Relationships – Subject Matter Experts with Lending, Escrow, Title, Home Inspection and Pest Control (termite) – your tail needs to be protected. Without a continual education with all vendors crafts that will have some part - no matter how small - in your transaction, the agent is doing you a disservice. We have to know all aspects of other associated vendor’s tasks so we can throw a “flag” on the play if need be, calling them on the carpet.