Searching for a realtor to join my network to help find properties in MD (Central Region). Having a tough time finding a realtor interested in working with an investor - even considering getting my realtor license as well so I have access to data on MLS without them. Thoughts? Suggestions?
@Edward A. What are you specifically looking for from your agent? Do you simply need an MLS search set-up and emailed to you, or are you seeking to view lots of different properties several times a week and bid on a subset of those?
I think most agents would be happy to work with you in the former capacity, but you may have more trouble finding someone interested in the latter, unless you are an active buyer. Let me know your needs and I may be able to refer a few folks to you.
I have great agents I work for. In a couple of areas I had to switch agents. My agent in california is one of the best in the area. The way we work. She sets my up in the system so I automatically get listing in my "neighborhoods". I check every listing. When one comes in my price range, I email her "why". She always know the answer, than if I wish, we submit a low ball contract and go on. I don't go see the properties until they have been accepted by the bank. So far I have only invested in Short sales, since all the houses are new, cookie cutter, It is all based on the numbers.
I honestly think you ability to find an agent is going to be your expectations. I also give her tons of recommendations and other business. We have been working together for almost 1.5 years so it is definitely a relationship that grows. I wasn't this comfortablle in the beginning, heck I almost fired her. So you will have "moments" no matter what you do. I definitely recommend you check out your area. I know I have no interest in becoming a realtor out here.
Elizabeth Colegrove MLS listings emailed to me and then thorough follow-up when I decide to bid on a property. I have been reading several books - one by J. Scott about flipping. I am not sure I want to flip or buy/hold. I believe in my area the numbers support more the latter, but I still need to buy at a price so there is at least a small positive cash flow. I want to setup a system where I can run numbers on potential properties in my neighborhoods I want to concentrate on. I have tried to bid on two properties and both times I had to follow-up to try to get info and I am not blaming anyone but myself, but I need more info if I want to succeed and control of the bids and following up with the banks, etc. I lost one of the houses because I waited too long to follow up with the listing agent - who told me 20 hours before the end of an auction that I had to bid online and the paperwork he had prepared was not accepted by the mortgage company - very frustrating - I couldn't make the timing to bid and saw the property sell for about $5K lower than my top price I was willing to pay. I blame myself (and am learning what not to do) but wouldn't it help to have an agent actually follow-up for you on bids while you spend your precious time looking for properties by the numbers or other ways to find the properties to invest in? Not sure, but seems to me that if I find a realtor in my area willing to more than just setup MLS (although I need that) it would be a win/win. As far as number of houses, I am just starting out so thinking 1-2 properties per year so I am not a big time investor - just a beginner - maybe that is the problem?
Keep the suggestions coming - this is very helpful.
@Edward A. - hope that makes sense. Realized there are typo's. sorry off to bed! the key is simply to have a symbiotic relationship. Whatever that turns out to be for you and your chosen realtor! The investors who have trouble are more trouble than their money brings in !
@Edward A. Yes. I think the fact that you are new is probably part of the problem. Agents work on commission, and if there are not going to be deals, it's not going to be interesting to most agents. One thing you may want to consider is finding an agent that will offer you an hourly rate or a flat monthly fee. If you buy, the commission earned can be applied to your monthly flat fee, so you'd really only be paying if you weren't purchasing. Everyone wins in that scenario.
@Edward A. 1-2 properties per year is fine (that's about what i purchase per area). The key is how much work are you for those properties. My agent does all the comps and follows through on the property. On the other hand, she does maybe 5 a year for the 2 I close. They know properties won't always close, on the other hand remember you are competing with first time home buyers (who are a pain! in their own way)! As you know there is only so much time in the day. Time is money. So as long as you aren't wasting their time and costing them less, per hour than a different client you are fine! The problem people run into is when they are buying 50k houses and are 3 times as much work as a 300k buyer. So the agent loses money and gains nothing!
Great advice - thanks everyone
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