How to find/interview real estate agents

6 Replies

My husband and I are looking to purchase our first rental with a buy and hold strategy. I am looking for some thoughts/advice on how to find a real estate agent that is investor friendly. We are looking to purchase either a single family home or duplex in the Tacoma, WA area. While we are looking for just one property now, our goal is to continue investing in this area moving from single family homes and duplexes to larger multi-family units.

I know there is a page for real estate agents on Bigger Podcast but what do I do after searching there? Call and interview the agents? If so, any questions do you recommend asking? What would you consider red flags while talking with agenda? or, do you have someone you would recommend?

Thanks for your help and advice. We are really excited to start investing.

Best, 

Katie 

Hi! I'd ask how they mitigate legal issues, how they would market the home. If they specialize in working with investors. I'd ask how they arrived at their valuation and the reasoning behind it. I'd ask how they negotiate too. Red flags would be not knowing real estate investing on top of being a broker, being lax on paperwork or not knowing how to use certain addenda. 

PS, I'm a local broker! 😁

Research online the individual or team, look at their reviews (Google & Zillow), their designations, if they work in Real Estate full time, and what they specialize in.  Years of experience does not matter in Real Estate, the amount of transactions matters.  Obtaining a real estate license or being a broker does not mean you know your industry. Interview them and see how organized they are and if they are responsive.  Referrals! 

@Katie Cava I have never seen a real estate agent that is not "investor friendly." I don't even know what that means. As a buyer, you are not even paying for the services of an agent as long as the property is listed on the MLS. The seller pays the commission and the agents split it. If you are looking for an agent that will write a bunch of low ball offers that will never be accepted, then No. An agent will not waste their time if they don't think they will ever be paid. I recommend sending letters of intent to your prospective sellers. Once you get a yes from the seller on an LOI, then write an offer, or get an agent to write it, based on the LOI.

Originally posted by @Anthony Dooley :

@Katie Cava I have never seen a real estate agent that is not "investor friendly." I don't even know what that means. As a buyer, you are not even paying for the services of an agent as long as the property is listed on the MLS. The seller pays the commission and the agents split it. If you are looking for an agent that will write a bunch of low ball offers that will never be accepted, then No. An agent will not waste their time if they don't think they will ever be paid. I recommend sending letters of intent to your prospective sellers. Once you get a yes from the seller on an LOI, then write an offer, or get an agent to write it, based on the LOI.

I like LOI for more commercial transaction in our markets out here and especially where she is at today.. the market is far to hot to make LOI feasible for buying an SFR unless your going off market.

for me its all about communication with an agent  IE do they actually answer the phone or just let it go to VM and give the hey if you text me you get a faster response.. I hate that.. and wont do it. I don't like to text.. educate yourself first .. narrow down your scope.. and for sure get pre approved from a LOCAL mortgage broker lender.. unless your looking at total dumps that need heavy rehab.. there wont be much of a negotiation going on.. market is too strong.

Originally posted by @Anthony Dooley :

@Katie Cava I have never seen a real estate agent that is not "investor friendly." I don't even know what that means. As a buyer, you are not even paying for the services of an agent as long as the property is listed on the MLS. The seller pays the commission and the agents split it. If you are looking for an agent that will write a bunch of low ball offers that will never be accepted, then No. An agent will not waste their time if they don't think they will ever be paid. I recommend sending letters of intent to your prospective sellers. Once you get a yes from the seller on an LOI, then write an offer, or get an agent to write it, based on the LOI.

 I'd say being investor friendly means knowing more than how to just buy and sell real estate. Like how to analyze the optimal max price offer, knowing how to best choose the purchasing criteria used to buy the property, knowing how to accurately calculate returns and costs, knowing different creative investing tools to best structure a deal where there wouldn't have been one before, knowing if your client is using the most effective strategy for their goals matching their strengths and weaknesses. Even helping with marketing and lead generation. In my experience, most retail real estate agents don't have this depth of knowledge past the skills of buying and selling a house. Some do, but most don't.