to Choose a REALTOR® Not all agents or brokers are
REALTORS® -- there is a difference.
As a prerequisite to selling real estate, a person
must be licensed by the state in which they work, either as an agent/salesperson
or as a broker. Before a license is issued, minimum standards for education,
examinations and experience, which are determined on a state by state basis,
must be met. After receiving a real estate license, most agents go on to join
their local board or association of REALTORS® and the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF
REALTORS®, the world's largest professional trade association. They can then
call themselves REALTORS®. Moving?Minimize your relocation stress. Our moving section offers
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The term "REALTOR®" is a registered collective
membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of
the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of
Ethics (which in many cases goes beyond state law). In most areas, it is the
REALTOR® who shares information on the homes they are marketing, through a
Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Working with a REALTOR® who belongs to an MLS
will give you access to the greatest number of homes.
Using an agent and the obligations that are owed
to you An agent is bound by certain legal obligations. Traditionally,
these common-law obligations are to: Put the client's interests above anyone
else's; Keep the client's information confidential; Obey the client's lawful
instructions; Report to the client anything that would be useful; and Account to
the client for any money involved.
NOTE: A REALTOR® is held to an even higher standard
of conduct under the NAR’s Code of Ethics. In recent years, state laws have been
passed setting up various duties for different types of agents. As you start
working with a REALTOR®, ask for a clear explanation of your state's current
regulations, so that you will know where you stand on these important matters.
The difference between a buyer's and a seller's
broker Suppose you sign an offer to buy a home for $150,000. You really
want the property and there's a chance other offers are coming in, so you tell
the broker that "We'll go up to $160,000 if we have to. But of course don't tell
that to the seller." If you're dealing with a seller's agent, he or she may be
duty-bound to tell the seller that important fact. In most states, the seller's
agent doesn't have any duty of confidentiality toward you. Honest treatment
might require that the agent warn you that "I must convey to the seller anything
that would be useful so don't tell me anything you wouldn't tell the seller."
Make the most of your money. Our finance section features
information about banking, loans, insurance, taxes, investing and
TIP: If you're dealing with seller's agents, it’s a
good idea to keep confidential information to yourself. These days many home
buyers prefer instead to hire a buyer's broker, one who owes the full range of
duties, including confidentiality and obedience, to the buyer. A buyer's broker
is often paid by the seller, regardless of the agency relationship.
How to evaluate an agent In making your
decision to work with an agent, there are certain questions you should ask when
evaluating a potential agent. The first question you should ask is whether the
agent is a REALTOR® . You should then ask:
Does the agent have an active real estate license
in good standing? To find this information, you can check with your state’s
Does the agent belong to the Multiple Listing
Service (MLS) and/or a reliable online home buyer’s search service? Multiple
Listing Services are cooperative information networks of REALTORS® that provide
descriptions of most of the houses for sale in a particular region.
Is real estate their full-time career?
What real estate designations does the agent
Which party is he or she representing--you or the
seller? This discussion is supposed to occur early on, at "first serious
contact" with you. The agent should discuss your state's particular definitions
of agency, so you'll know where you stand.
In exchange for your commitment, how will the agent
help you accomplish your goals? Show you homes that meet your requirements and
provide you with a list of the properties he or she is showing you?
Author:Joni Smith Phone: 972-998-7790 Dated: April 7th 2014 Views: 988 About Joni: I have been with Halo Group Realty since January 2014. I received my Real Estate Certification thro...
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