What should the customer know about your pricing (e.g., discounts, fees)?
My company's commission varies from 5-6% which is normally split between the listing agent and the buyer's agent if you are selling a home. If you are buying a home my commission is paid by the listing company that has the home so there is no charge to you in the majority of cases.
What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
There are two possible scenarios depending if you are a buyer or seller.
Buyers - Meet to discuss your needs, find out if you have been pre-approved by a lender if necessary - if not I recommend local lenders to obtain that pre-approval. Once you have been pre-approved then we start the search for your home. By discussing your needs and wants we start sending you current listings and you decide which homes you would like to view. After you have found your home I assist in negotiating a price, finding the right professionals for any inspections, making sure you have legal representation and keep in touch with your lender to make sure the mortgage process is on track and then ....the CLOSING!
Sellers - We meet with you at your home or other mutually agreed upon location. We will look at your home in person, review the current market activity in your neighborhood and price your home at a mutually acceptable price to get it sold at the highest and best terms that fit your needs. I present all offers, advice you on which one would be the best fit and do any due diligence on the buyer to make sure they can afford the home. We coordinate any home inspections so you don't have to be there, recommend any legal representation and assist you in finding a new home if you are staying in the local area and/or recommend another agent out of state or area.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
Strong marketing and customer service skills in major Fortune 500 companies which I utilize in finding the right buyer for your home. My technical skills using the latest software and internet marketing to expose a seller's home to the greatest buyer pool.
I attend workshops, conventions to stay current on the latest techniques in social media, software and internet marketing for real estate.
How did you get started doing this type of work?
My father passed away and left my mother several 2 unit apartments that they owned. Neither my mother and I had experience managing rental properties so I took a introductory real estate class and passed the course, then passed the state licensing test.
The same year I decided to buy my 1st home after years of being a renter. My Realtor(tm) and I started talking and I told him I had my license but that I doubted anyone wanted a part-time realtor. Long story short I ended up signing up with his brokerage and worked for them part time for many years.
When I was "downsized" from my corporate job of 16 years I had my "part time" real estate job and made it into a full time position.
In 2006 I decided to go solo and open up my own brokerage firm....of course, in 2007 the bottom fell out but I have managed to continue doing what I really enjoy - helping people find their dream home and now - assisting homeowners get out from underwater mortgages and start fresh!
What types of customers have you worked with?
From first time home buyers, to seasoned home owners as well as, distressed properties (short sales), I am comfortable and knowledgeable in working with both home buyers and sellers.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Interview at least 3 and find one that fits your personality and goals.