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Questions for Buyer Agents

Evaluating Buyer Agents

Real estate transactions are typically complex, often stressful and usually time consuming. Primary benefits to home buyers of engaging a real estate professional include saving time and money.

The majority of MABA clients are busy professionals. They value the expertise of a proven real estate professional. They want the peace of mind of having a MABA buyer broker who is their guide throughout the home buying process. Most clients readily acknowledge that they simply don't have the time or expertise to commit the resources to research, evaluate, and negotiate the complexities of the home buying process on their own.

If this perspective sounds familiar, let us help you as a prospective home buyer make an informed evaluation of buyer brokers. Below are some questions to help you evaluate a buyer's agent.

Questions for Evaluating a Buyer Agent

How do you find a buyer agent that you have confidence in and are comfortable working with? Ask for referrals. If you are new to MA, start with a credible organization such as MABA where less than 1% of MA buyer agents meet the strict membership standards. Then ask questions and evaluate your comfort level with their expertise, credentials and track record.

  • Are you a buyer's agent? If yes, what experience have you had as a buyer's agent?
  • What specific training do you have as a buyer's agent?
  • Does your office have ongoing sales meetings on ways to benefit buyer clients?
  • Are you a member of a buyer's agent association?
  • How long have you worked on the buyer's side?
  • How long did you work on the seller's side?
  • Do you also list houses for sale? Do agents in your office list homes for sale? If yes, how do you plan on keeping my information separate from seller's agents in your office?
  • Do you have a private office? Private fax? Private phone service?
  • Do you have regular office meetings to discuss the market and techniques in real estate? If yes, do your sales meetings focus on ways to get the best price and terms for sellers, for buyers or for both?
  • Do you work with a partner in your office? Does your partner list homes for sale? If yes, what will you do in the event that your partner is the listing agent on the home that I want to buy?
  • If you (and your partner) list homes for sale, how many of the last 20 transactions that you have done have been on the buyer's side?
  • Will you sign a guarantee that you represent my interests exclusively and will not attempt to sell houses you or your partner list?
  • What geographical areas are you most knowledgeable about?
  • Do you have full access to the area's Multiple Listing Service (MLS)?
  • Do you have access to For Sale by Owner (FSBO) and foreclosed properties?
  • What is your fee structure? Will you give that to me, in writing?
  • Will you make decisions about what homes to show me without regard to co-fees offered to cooperating agents on MLS listings?
  • How many homes are you prepared to show me?

Latest from the Blog

  • Home Sales Slow Down in the Dog Days of Summer

    Trend of decreasing inventory and new listings continue to inflate prices

    WALTHAM, Mass. - August 23, 2016 - The Massachusetts Association of Realtors® (MAR) reported today that home sales decreased for the first time in 14 months, after a year of several record highs. Prices pushed up again for the fifth month in a row as inventory continues to slide. Condominium sales also closed lower with median prices up from 2015.

    July Closed Sales:

    Single-Family July 2016 July 2015 %Change
    Sales 5,799 6,745 -14.0%
    Median Price $376,750 $364,000 +3.5%
    • Closed sales down for the first time in 14 months
    • Median prices have been up for the 15 out of the last 16 months
    Condominium July 2016 July 2015 %Change
    Sales 2,093 2,554 -18.1%
    Median Price $360,000 $340,000 +5.9%
    • Closed sales down for the first time in nine months
    • Median prices have been up 12 out of the last 16 months

    “Buyers finally took a break for the first time since May 2015,” said 2016 MAR President Annie Blatz, branch executive at Kinlin Grover Real Estate in Brewster. “So much of this year’s activity came early when the market typically is slow. We also know some buyers are getting priced out of the market, and the only way we can fix this is with more inventory.”

    Inventory and Days on Market:

    Single-Family July 2016 July 2015 %Change
    Inventory 17,650 24,938 -29.2%
    Months of Supply 3.6 5.8 -37.9%
    Days on Market 78 77 +1.3%
    New Listings 6,387 7,507 -14.9%
    • 54th straight month of year-over-year inventory decreases
    • New listings added to the market down for the fourth time in 12 months
    Condominium July 2016 July 2015 %Change
    Inventory 2,093 2,554 -18.1%
    Months of Supply 2.4 3.5 -31.4%
    Days on Market 58 66 -12.1%
    New Listings 2,307 2,403 -4.0%
    • Inventory down for 11 out of the last 12 months
    • New listings added to the market down for the fourth time in 12 months

    “Despite the slowdown in closed sales in July, the market continues to be intensely competitive,” said Blatz.  “It remains a very good time to put your home on the market if you’re interested in selling and Massachusetts needs a boost in supply more than ever.”

    MABA's buyer agents have been busy making offers for our clients. In multiple offer situations, MABA agents know how to help buyer’s offers stand out among the competition to increase the odds of acceptance by the seller. Find an MABA agent who has expertise in the Massachusetts neighborhoods that you are searching.