How to Pick a Real Estate Agent

Selling or buying a home is an important decision. Choosing the right real estate agent can make all the difference.

choose the best real estate agent

Two Steps to Choosing the Absolute Best Real Estate Agent

December 13, 2021

Let’s say you want to buy or sell a home and you want advise, a local expert to help you sell for the highest price or buy a home in the right area at the right time. How do you pick a Realtor? Hopefully you’re looking at experience (years licensed and sales completed) as well as client satisfaction (reviews and recommendations). These are the two necessary steps to picking the absolute best real estate agent. You’ll need both to find the best available real estate agent. One or the other is not enough! You could find an agent with hundreds of great reviews only to find out they don’t represent actual sales or clients. Or you could find someone with...


zillow agent finder

Zillow Agent Finder Alternatives

December 10, 2021

So, you’ve decided it’s time to sell or buy a home. How do you find a reputable and experienced agent to help you? You could go with the agent attached to a property you like or the one showing it at an open house, but how much do you know about that person and their experience? In our 2022 Real Estate Agent Forecast, we reported that after the 1.4 million record high in 2021, the number of real estate agents is expected to grow to 1.55 million in 2022. Oregon has a total of 17,000, and over 8,000 of those are in the Portland metro area. With all these options it can be hard to know where to start. Buying...


questions to ask interviewing realtor

What Interview Questions to Ask a Realtor Before you Sell a Home?

May 21, 2021

About to interview a Realtor to sell your home? Whether you were recommended to this real estate agent by a friend or you found the Realtor online, the next best step is to interview the agent at your home. Yes, you could interview the Realtor online or on the phone, but we recommend the first step (as long as everyone is comfortable) is to schedule an appointment at the home you are considering selling. This will help you gauge the Realtor’s reaction to your property and help you know if the agent is a good fit for your home sale. 1. What are the Exact Terms of your Cancellation Policy? Okay, I know that sounds like a strange place to...


Top 5 Sites to Help you Choose a Real Estate Agent in 2021

March 24, 2021

In many ways the internet is like the Wild Wild West. A land of opportunity, but one that’s so unregulated it’s hard to know which way is up. You can glean a ton from online reviews of real estate agents, but a lot can be misleading too. Fake reviews still run rampant in 2021, meaning you either have to sift through the slush pile and judge for yourself or find a trusted real estate agent review site. That’s why we’ve put together this guide, which will steer you towards the most reliable resources while providing some insider insight into how different review sites operate. Spoiler alert: a lot of them are dubious. But there are sources of information that can...


zillow real estate agent

What is a Zillow Real Estate Agent?

October 30, 2020

Does Zillow have their own Real Estate Agents? Okay so let’s first clarify. Does Zillow have their own Realty company with their own agents? Yes and no. Zillow does not have any agents within their company that you can call to list your home on the public market, or go help you find your next home – at least not yet. Zillow has employees that happen to also have their real estate license that assist Zillow with their “Zillow Offers” program. Basically it is one of many iBuyer programs that makes a cash offer on your home (typically way under market value) for those home sellers that are willing to prioritize convenience over sales price. So while you can’t yet...


questions to ask realtor in interview

5 Questions to ask a Realtor in an Interview

June 26, 2020

Selling a home is one of the most important financial decisions a person makes during their lifetime, even if they make it multiple times. A good Realtor can make the experience stress free and enjoyable (or as enjoyable as possible) and financially rewarding. But how do you know if a Realtor will perform, how do you know if they are a good fit? Questions to ask a Realtor during an interview: 1. What are the exact terms of your cancellation policy? Okay, so maybe you didn’t expect this to be the first question. But honestly I think it should be. Let’s say you went through the interview process and the real estate agent told you everything you wanted to hear...


real estate agent reviews

Top Real Estate Agent Review Sites: 2020 Update

December 13, 2019

For a long time, unverified online reviews were the bane of the real estate agent’s existence! Now it’s almost 2020, and we can finally celebrate the fact that actual customers are voicing their opinions online, creating a merit-based system in which the best real estate agents win.  However, the saavy real estate agent chooser should know where to look, because fake reviews are still out there (and we’ve been hit ourselves with some bogus spam reviews from people who simply don’t exist. So where’s the best place to find verified reviews of real estate agents from people who actually worked with them? We’re glad you asked! If you’re simply looking for reviews on the Stephen FitzMaurice Team, you can find...


sellers real estate agent specialist

Real Estate Agent vs. Seller Agent Specialist: What’s the difference?

April 26, 2019

Portland’s real estate landscape is vast! There’s a specialist for nearly every activity — and that’s a good thing. To have a hassle-free real estate transaction, you need someone handling the mortgage, someone looking at the title, someone inspecting the home, etc. That’s why a system has developed over the decades in which, in a given home sale transaction, there’s usually one real estate agent for the seller and one for the buyer. Now some real estate agents will take that a step further and exclusively represent sellers or exclusively represent buyers as a career specialization choice to serve their clients in the most effective manner. 3 Seller Agent Specialist Advantages 1. Improved Customer Service When I first started the...


principal broker oregon

What is a Principal Broker?

June 25, 2018

Real Estate Agent Real estate agent is the most commonly used and understood term in the public sphere to refer to someone who helps people buy and sell homes, but “real estate agent” is not typically the license term or official term the local governments use. Real Estate Broker Real estate agent is not the licensed term or the official term in Oregon and in most states. In Oregon someone who is licensed to sell homes or represent buyers purchasing homes is called a Broker. All of these Brokers will still typically refer to themselves as real estate agents because that is what the public easily understands (but these Brokers in their advertising requirements still need to refer to themselves...