Buying a house is one of the biggest and most fulfilling investments you’ll ever make in your life. However, the process may prove overwhelming, especially if you’re a first time home buyer. Finding a real estate agent is the first step towards mastering this otherwise complex activity.

Couple makes deal with real estate agent about new apartment

HOW TO FIND A TOP-NOTCH REAL ESTATE AGENT

Due to its persistent growth, the real estate market attracts thousands of new brokers and sales agents every year. However, finding a real estate agent who meets your exact requirements won’t be a walk in the park. These 3 proven tips will help you find the most professional agent for your real estate needs:

1. START ONLINE

Some search engines are specifically tailored to the real estate niche. They include Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, and Homes.com. Other than listings, they provide detailed agent profiles. You can narrow down your search using metrics such as ZIP code, experience and specialty. Individual agent profiles are also rated by users. Most include helpful reviews by past customers to give you an overview of the person you’ll be dealing with.

They also have the agents’ physical addresses, cell phone numbers, social media profiles, real estate license details, the number of years they’ve been active, and the languages they’re fluent in. Having this information at your fingertips makes it easier to engage them.

2. USE SOME OLD SCHOOL METHODS

As resourceful as the internet is, you still have to roll up your sleeves and do some digging. By driving around the neighborhood you’re interested in, you’ll come across some “For Sale” signs with an agent’s contact details.

You can also attend a few open houses in Manhattan Beach and engage in casual conversation with the agents. This allows you to gauge their expertise, as well as have a detailed overview of the local real estate market. Local newspapers also have several listings and agent details that are relevant to your locality.

3. GET REFERRALS

The real estate industry has always placed emphasis on networking. One way of finding a real estate agent is by relying on referrals from family, friends, and acquaintances. Professional agents stay in touch with their clients long after concluding a transaction.

These clients are in turn more likely to recommend them to their social and professional circles. If you’re interested in buying a house in a certain neighborhood, start by looking for friends and relatives who already live there.

They’re more likely to give you an unbiased opinion of the best real estate agent in that locality. From there you can evaluate them further via online searches, after which you may proceed with a physical meeting.

Couple makes deal with real estate agent about new apartment

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A REAL ESTATE AGENT

Professional real estate agents put your best interests first. They also listen to and address your concerns, as opposed to persistently trying to make a sale. By empathizing with you, they’ll understand just how important the investment you’re about to make is.

Other qualities to look for in a real estate agent are:

  • Impressive interpersonal skills.
  • Deep knowledge of the local real estate market.
  • Ability to accommodate your schedule.
  • Compliance with all relevant state and federal regulations.

They should also be honest enough to tell you some hard truths, not just what they think you want to hear.

These actionable tips will come in handy in finding a real estate agent in Manhattan Beach.