Portland Real Estate Agent Reviews & Ratings: 2018 Guide

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Best Real Estate Agent Review Sites

These days, it’s pretty hard to find a product or service that hasn’t been reviewed and rated on a handful of different websites. In 2018, nothing goes un-rated, it seems, from TV shows to national parks, even zoo animals! Yet how do we tell the worthwhile reviews from the worthless, and what does the number of stars really say about a real estate agent?

The Two Best Agent Review Sites

Realtor.com and Zillow.com: these are the top two websites we recommend for checking out reviews of Portland real estate agents. Personally, we attempt to get all of our reviews on Zillow.com. I’ll say more on that later. Here’s why we think these are the two best real estate agent review sites:

  • Reviews are verified. Both Zillow and Realtor.com take steps to ensure that the person leaving the review for the agent have actually worked with that agent on that particular sale. They match up client names with the sold address. If someone leaves a review that is not a client, it gets researched, then removed if necessary. All actual clients can leave a review, good or bad. In contrast, websites like Yelp don’t bother to verify that the person leaving the review was an actual client, leading to a flood of reviews from friends, family, or perfect strangers who never actually worked with the real estate agent. Worse, Yelp will do nothing to remove bogus reviews, even if the person in the review itself admits they were not a client of the agent. Unfortunately, whatever we said of Yelp is also true of Google Places, or reviews you see on local Google Business Pages.
  • You can browse agent reviews without logging in. Type in “Portland real estate agent reviews” into Google and you’ll find a number of websites where you need to create a “free account” to read the reviews of agents. Why give away your personal information when you can simply go to a site that offers verified reviews by actual customers, without the extra hassle?
  • Cut down the noise. Attempt to search for the top-rated Portland real estate agents on Yelp, and you’ll mostly get a bunch of ads — realtors who have paid to appear first in the results. Although Zillow generates revenue this way as well, the number “featured agents” that appear at the top of the search page is currently limited to three. Visually, they’re separated from your actual search results, and it’s pretty easy to tell who is who. Realtor.com, meanwhile, features all agents equally, without offering paid placement in search results. However, we find their website design a bit more difficult to parse than Zillow’s streamlined layout. Even with the limited ads, Zillow’s section on real estate agents is by far the easiest to use.
  • Filter by activity. Once you’ve entered a zip code or city in which to search for a real estate agent, both Zillow and Realtor.com offer a drop-down menu by which to filter the search. These include categories like “most active”, “most recent sales”, “best local reviews”, and “most listings active/sold”. This feature is helpful for choosing an agent — you not only want someone who has great reviews, but they should also reflect recent activity on the part of the agent. The Portland real estate market changes all the time, so it’s important to find an agent who is active in the game.

Additional Real Estate Agent Review Verifications

Since Zillow is a third party and I can’t be sure they will be around forever or provide the same real estate agent review service as they do now, I found a second method to ensure my client reviews were verified by an independent company. I hired Arrivala.com for this and you can find the 150+ client reviews they have verified for me on my client reviews page.

Online Real Estate Agents Reviews are Helpful But…

Be careful which website you’re putting your trust in. Some sites do a lot of work to verify client reviews of real estate agents and others seem to do no work at all. Also keep in mind the old adage, “you can’t please everyone.” If the vast majority of reviews are positive, your probably looking at a good candidate to interview yourself. Have the agent come by for an interview and make your own judgment call.

June 1, 2018

Stephen FitzMaurice

Stephen FitzMaurice, Realtor is a top 5% real estate agent in the U.S. A Principal Broker in Oregon, Managing Broker in Washington, he has been licensed since 2003 for residential real estate sales. Call his team in Oregon at 503-714-1111 or in Washington at 360-345-3833.

4% max to sell a home in Portland and SW Washington.
4.25% max to sell a home in Salem and Bend.
Over 2,000 homes sold.