We all get the fancy cards in the mail with showroom-style houses, nice smiling faces, and charts that always seem to go up and to the right. But does that mean this person or team is right for you when it comes to real estate investing? If you’re reading this article, it means that you do your homework. Great start… keep reading.
Ask yourself what you want to get out of your REALTOR®. With the plethora of real estate websites out there, you can narrow down thousands of possible choices, all without leaving the house. You can even sell your home now completely online. The days of having to hire an agent to drive you around on a Saturday to look at houses they found for you are behind us. That doesn’t mean you no longer need a real estate agent, actually quite the opposite, but it does mean that both they and you should adapt to the changing technology.
As an investor, you don’t need someone driving you around, nor do you really want a lot of “recommendations”. You think objectively and you do your own homework. If your spreadsheet doesn’t like a property, your agent shouldn’t like it either. You need a REALTOR® that thinks like you, understands business finance, and gives you ACCESS to the information that you need to make informed buy/sell/lease decisions.
Here are a few simple questions to ask when you’re interviewing agents.
- What area(s) of town have the highest cap rate, cash flow, growth rate, and ROI?
- Is it better to buy one large home or two smaller ones?
- How many investor clients do you have/had?
If the agent struggles to answer these, they probably aren’t a good fit. They may be an amazing REALTOR®, but that doesn’t mean they are right for you as an investor. One size does not fit all.