For the majority of people, the most expensive thing they’ll ever buy – or sell – is their house. So it’s important to get good advice and find a real estate agent you can trust.
But how can you choose when everyone claims to be the best? Try asking these three questions.
1. What real estate knowledge do you have?
All REALTORS are licensed, but just passing that test doesn’t necessarily guarantee your agent will have deep knowledge and solid advice.
“It takes approximately a year to get licensed as a real estate agent, and then you’re out in the field,” says Jason Wheeldon at Royal LePage East Kootenay Realty. Education, knowledge and experience are the most valuable assets of any real estate agent, so extra training and years in the market can really help. Wheeldon has taken the time to get accredited as a designated appraiser, with additional training in Real Estate studies through UBC’s Sauder School of Business.
“All of my education as an appraiser has made me a better REALTOR — I can give buyers better advice about how much they should offer, and I can counsel a seller with a well-researched analysis of their home and the market,” Wheeldon says. “We do an in-depth inventory of your home to do give an accurate assessment.”
2. What’s your commitment to our community?
The longer a real estate agent has lived and worked in your community, the more knowledge they’ll be able to share.
“We’ve always kept track of our statistics, and now with 25 years that information has built into a really valuable resource,” Wheeldon says. “We know every inch of the community.”
In addition to that long history in Cranbrook, it’s useful to have a REALTOR who’s committed to your community’s future.
“When you’re looking for a real estate agent you want someone who’s thinking long-term. When you buy a house they should be thinking about keeping you as a customer and building a relationship for years into the future,” Wheeldon says. “We provide transparency in our practice. Eventually homebuyers may come back to sell their home and we want to ensure they’ve made a wise investment and have great re-sale options.’”
3. How do you communicate?
Buying or selling a home can be a long process, so it’s important to build strong lines of communication with your real estate agent. You want someone who’ll give you honest advice, and also keep calm if the stress starts to build.
“Our team treats all our customers professionally. We don’t sugar coat anything. And we have a lot of fun too,” says Wheeldon. Jason Wheeldon PREC includes Wheeldon, licensed REALTOR assistant Kaytee Wheaton, and office administrator Laura Kennedy.
“It’s a great team — we’re professional and thorough, but we also have a lot of fun and a lot of laughs working with our clients,” Wheeldon says.
For more great advice visit cranbrookrealty.com or call 250-420-2350.