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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

  • Majority of Realtors® See No Home Appraisal Issues in Greater Boston Real Estate Market

    The Massachusetts Association of Realtors® (MAR) recently asked its members if and how their first quarter transactions of 2016 were affected by appraisals that came in lower than the agreed-upon sales price. Of those Realtors® who responded, just 10 percent reported that all of their transactions (6.2%) or a majority of their transactions (4.1%) have had higher sales prices than appraisals. Eleven percent of Realtors who responded said some of their transactions were impacted by appraisals that were lower than the sales price. Almost 18 percent (17.9%) reported that only one or two of their transactions had a higher sales price than appraisal, while 60 percent reported that none of their transactions had any appraisal issues.

    “With a busy market and increasing prices, there is always a risk that the agreed-upon sales price and appraisals could come into conflict. It’s good to see that this isn’t generally the case and that buyers and sellers are coming together on realistic prices,” said MAR President Annie Blatz.

    In order to avoid offer/appraisal mismatch, buyers should work with a real estate agent who is a member of the Massachusetts Association of Buyer Agents. These agents are dedicated to increasing buyers’ odds of getting the properties they want at a realistic price based on current market conditions. Before you submit your offer, your MABA agent will prepare a fair market value analysis of comparable homes. Whether you are thinking of buying a home or investment property in the Greater Boston Area, Cape Cod, Worcester, Springfield, the Berkshires or anywhere else in Massachusetts, contact our MABA headquarters to find a local buyer's agent with expertise in the neighborhood you are interested in.