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6 questions to ask when hiring a real estate agent

Whether you’re buying or selling a home, it’s important to choose a real estate team that can accommodate your needs, location, timing and more. Below are six questions you should ask when interviewing and hiring a real estate agent.

1. How long have you been in residential real estate, and how many transactions did you close last year?

While experience does not always guarantee skill, real estate is one of many professions where much is learned on the job. When buying or selling in the highly competitive and fast-moving Silicon Valley real estate market, it’s important to have the right advocate on your side.

By asking an agent about their personal experience and closing record, you can ensure they are active and successful and have a deep understanding of local market trends.

2. What is your business philosophy?

While there’s no right answer to this question, this will help you determine how closely the agent’s style and business direction mesh with your needs.

For example, some agents may lay out a templated plan to help homeowners sell their home in under two months. If you need to sell immediately, this could be a great fit. If you’re hesitant to move that quickly or your timing is flexible depending on when the market is best, you should ask if the agent will tailor the experience to your needs instead of expecting you to follow their usual timeline.

3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

There’s a reason this question is asked in almost every job interview. It illuminates not only the confidence of your subject but also their vulnerabilities. If you’re not sure of what strengths you want your agent to have in spades, read this list of 7 non-negotiable qualities of a top real estate agent.

4. Do you specialize in my area or type of home?

As a seller, you know your home is unique and the listing strategy should be, too. When selecting a listing agent, check to see if he or she understands the nuances of pricing and selling your home in today’s market.

If you’re a buyer, you’ll likely have narrowed your search to a few neighborhoods, school districts or home styles. Ask your agent what kind of experience they have in assisting buyers like you, and if they have a bidding strategy that will help you close on the home of your dreams.

Read more about the Erdal team’s expertise in buying and selling Sunnyvale homes and Eichler homes.

5. What will our working relationship look like?

Good communication is paramount in today’s fast-moving market. You’ll want to discuss upfront how the agent will keep you informed on the progress of your transaction, how often they’ll provide updates and if you should expect emails, texts or phone calls.

We spend an average of four to six months working with a client from start to finish. We pride ourselves on good communication because in many cases, especially as the sale gets closer, we talk daily. As an Erdal Team client, you’ll be viewed as an important partner and co-pilot in navigating the purchase or sale of your home.

See more about what you can expect from us, as your selling agent or buyer agent.

6. Could you please give me the names and phone numbers of your three most recent clients?

Talking to recent clients who were in your shoes just a few months ago, will help you evaluate the agent’s ability to deliver on what they’ve promised. Reading an independent review on independent sites like Zillow is also a candid way to learn more about your agent’s success rate and client satisfaction.