The process of buying a home, especially for first-time buyers, can be and often is complicated, confusing, and littered with legal complexities. And that, of course, is one of the main reasons real estate agents exist. Buying a house is, most of the time, just too much for the layman or neophyte to tackle unassisted. But not all agents are created equal. You need to know what makes a good agent and what she can bring to the table. So take a look at these 5 things you should expect from your agent when buying a house in Richmond.
1. Frequent and Easy Communication
As with any relationship, business or otherwise, when buying a house in Richmond, just call (804) 453-0626.)
2. Mastery of the Latest Technology and Techniques
Another thing you should certainly expect from your agent when buying a house in Richmond is a good deal of technological savvy. Almost daily, it seems, new real estate apps and programs and various gadgets are introduced, and your agent needs to be up on all this.
One example of this technology your agent should be conversant with is digital signature software, which allows “a real estate agent to obtain signatures without having to physically meet with a buyer This can save lots of time not only for a real estate agent, but also you. Since most home buyers have very busy schedules . . . this can eliminate a delay in getting signatures on a required document and also expedite the transaction and help avoid potential delays.”
3. Professional Network and Business Connections
You should also expect from your Richmond agent a broad professional network with plenty of valuable business connections. For buying a house involves many more professionals than just your agent. You will, for example, have to call on mortgage consultants, inspectors, appraisers, real estate attorneys, and more. You should, then, seek out an agent who has a network of top-notch professionals she can call on when the need arises.
A good agent will have a roster of highly qualified professionals to hit up when their services are called for. This can be a huge timesaver because you won’t have to locate and then vet them yourself. But it can also help you avoid costly missteps. Using connections from your agent’s network, for example, will allow you to use an inspector who won’t overlook problems with the property that might cost you a ton in repairs.
4. Knowledge of Local Markets and Search Skills
In addition, when buying a house in Richmond, you should expect from your agent a solid grasp of the local markets as well as the willingness and ability to help you refine and target your search. Local-market knowledge will allow your agent to fully understand pricing and appreciation/depreciation trends along with an inside track on listings that are coming up. Perhaps more important, though, is your agent’s search assistance.
House hunting takes a lot of time and effort, and, still, you’ll have to make some compromises and concessions because seldom do expectations and desires perfectly match up with reality and availability. “On of your realtor’s key jobs,” according to the pros, “is to help you clarify what you want most, and find you options that meet your specifications as much as possible. The best real estate agents are going to counsel you on location, neighborhood, school, and other factors.”
5. Negotiating Expertise
Finally, you should definitely expect your agent to have an abundance of negotiation expertise. One of your agent’s main tasks is to negotiate the best price possible for you and get you the most favorable concessions. Skill in this area is what really makes a top-notch real estate agent.
A good agent will analyze the market and the corresponding value of the home to see how it stacks up against the prices of comparable homes in the area and then try to get you the best value price-wise. And a prime ingredient in getting that great price is that critical initial offer, about which your agent can advise you. And then your agent should be able to help you successfully navigate the negotiations process, especially when the seller comes back with a counteroffer.
These are the basic agent must-haves, but they are by no means everything you should expect from your agent when buying a house in Richmond. You can expect these 5 things and so much more from our agents.