I'm always flattered when Jordan Gunn, of the San Francisco Chronicle,includes my responses in the weekend edition of the real estate section.(It's riveting reading to be sure.) While admittedly, my answers are too long-winded (which means Jordan has to edit considerably to fit his format) this week's questions presented a "lightbulb moment" and I wanted to pass them along (just in case you don't read the SF Chronicle or catch it on SF Gate). Below is the unedited version and what I think every prospective client should know before aligning themselves with a Realtor. (Thank you Jordan for asking.)
"What questions should a client ask when interviewing a Realtor? How can a client find out if the Realtor has the time and resources to serve them?"
The questions to ask when interviewing a Realtor would seem obvious at first glance:
While more and more sites would have you believe that real estate is a simple transaction that can be handled directly between Buyer and Seller; it isn't. (And BTW, many of you will be both buying and selling simultaneously. If that's not a recipe for stress and fear, I don't know what is!)
In short, buying or selling real estate is a highly emotional, often frustrating, intense, whirlwind of activity and having an experienced, neutral third-party negotiator is going to be key to your success - on either side of the transaction. So ask away; we're here to answer any questions you may have. And if your Realtor can't answer these questions to your satisfaction, move on. There are plenty of knowledgeable Agents who can and who will work diligently on your behalf.
How can I help you?
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Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 18 years and has published more than 750 humorous but always informative, essays on life and real estate.