For instance, a REALTOR® can help you determine how much home you can afford based on your financial situation, help you get prequalified for a loan, and even inform you about available financing options. A REALTOR® also is an expert on the neighborhood, and can provide detailed information about schools, transportation, local taxes and community characteristics. Using a REALTOR® is also one way of gaining access to homes listed on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), an important marketing tool used by REALTORS® to inform other REALTORS® about available properties. That means a REALTOR® can give you information about a wide range of available homes from which to choose. When it comes to finding out ifyou're paying too much, a REALTOR® can provide you with market analyses comparing asking and selling prices of homes in the neighborhood. Finally, a REALTOR® can serve as the liaison between you and the seller, bringing to the table negotiating expertise and knowledge about required disclosures and the housing market.
So, where do you find a REALTOR®?Like finding any good professional, the best way to find a REALTOR® is through recommendation from friends or those who have bought or sold homes recently. Ask for references and check each thoroughly. Also, interview several REALTORS® before you decide on one.
It's important to find a professional who is a REALTOR®. Why? A REALTOR® is someone who, as a member of the local, state and national trade associations, adheres to a strict code of ethics. Recently, the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® commissioned a nationwide survey to determine whether REALTORS® were doing their job professionally. The results were impressive: 97 percent of respondents indicated they received "excellent" or "very good" service from their REALTOR®.