Patrick Murray Logo

First Time Home Buyer: How to Pick a Good Real Estate Agent

When you’re new to the real estate market, it can be challenging to know what you’re supposed to do. It may seem like all your peers already have homes or at least seem to know what they’re doing. It can be easy to be convinced to use a friend or family member as your real estate agent even if they aren’t the best choice. Fortunately, we live in a world where it’s easy to access the information you need. Instead of defaulting to an agent who may not be the best option, you can move forward confident you know what you want from your agent. 

Time and Expertise. Many real estate agents only work part time. While some of these part time agents will likely be good matches, it’s generally a good idea to steer clear of those who aren’t working real estate full time. There are a few reasons for this. The first is if real estate is just a hobby for your agent, they aren’t likely to take it as seriously as someone whose livelihood is dependent on excellence in the industry. Beyond that, if you’re buying your first home, you want an agent who is going to see your dream house the moment it’s listed. That’s pretty difficult to do if they’re at their other job. They may also be more difficult to get a hold of and less knowledgeable. However, just because a real estate agent is full time doesn’t mean they’re automatically a great choice. Most real estate agents can effectively handle around six buyers and a dozen sellers at the same time. If an agent you are considering seems to be juggling more than that, you may want to look for someone who actually has time for you.

Knowledgeable Guide. When you hire a real estate agent, you’re buying the expertise of a person who has helped hundreds of Calgarians buy and sell homes. When you hire an agent, they should know where all the best schools are and be very familiar with the areas and neighborhoods you are considering. If communities have a specific real estate expert who has worked with numerous home buyers in the area, they will likely be a great option!

Great Communicator. Probably the most important item on our list, make sure whomever you choose is someone you can actually communicate with. If you’re the kind of person who’s too busy for a phone call and exclusively wants to text and email, it’s best to be sure your real estate agent is going to be able to accommodate that. If you’ve never turned on a computer and don’t know what a smartphone is, than that will also require a specific kind of communicator. If you and your agent can’t communicate properly, it’s going to be very difficult for them to help you with anything.

Your real estate agent is obligated to act in your best interest, but not all real estate agents are made equal. An agent who was great for your aunt may not be the best choice for you. My suggestion is to contact and interview two or three agents who know the areas you’re interested in. Ask them for references and ask them questions to make sure they actually know the neighbourhood. Looking for a great real estate agent in Calgary? Contact me today at (403) 660-5319.