Real estate agents are a dime a dozen. In fact, there are over 2 million real estate agents in the US. With so many to choose from, there’s bound to be a few bad apples in the group.
Do you suspect that you have an agent that isn’t really working for you or doesn’t know what they are doing? Here are 7 signs that you have a bad real estate agent and what you should do to get rid of them.
1. They Don’t Listen To Your Needs or Wants
You know what you want in a home and what you can afford. If you describe a list of needs and wants to your realtor, and they come back with homes that meet none of these criteria, there may be an issue. Likewise, if your budget is $200,000 and they bring you homes that are $300,000, they’re not listening to you.
If want you want in a home isn’t possible in your area in your budget, then they should be upfront about that and work with you to figure out what you can get within your budget.
2. Their Communication is Lacking
Real estate agents need to be very quick in their turnaround time to return calls, contracts, and other documents. Real estate is a fast-paced business that typically doesn’t stop at night, on the weekends, or on holidays. Because the market is so hot in many places, you need to act quickly to visit homes and make offers.
If you have a realtor who is impossible to get in touch with, you might risk missing out on a home you love because they are nonresponsive. Establish upfront with them the best way to get in touch and any times where they may not be available.
3. They Pressure You
A real estate agent should never pressure you to purchase a home or agree to a deal that you are not comfortable with. They should provide professional guidance and can provide their opinion if you ask for it, but ultimately, you are in charge and you should make decisions that are in your best interest.
4. They Don’t Show Leadership or Initiative
While you are in charge of final decision making, your realtor does need to show professional
leadership and initiative. After all, they are the professional and you agree to work with a realtor because they are experts in their field.
If they are wishy-washy, don’t have clear guidance for you, and don’t take initiative in finding houses that meet your criteria, clarifying questions, or working in your best interest, it may be time to part ways.
5. They Don’t Have Your Best Interests in Mind
Yes, a real estate agent is working for in order to get paid, but ultimately, they need to have your best interests in mind. You can flat out ask them if they are acting in your best interest.
This becomes tricky when you have a realtor who is acting as a dual agent and working for both the seller and the buyer. This is legal in 40 states but is not ideal. Ultimately, you want to do your due diligence when agreeing to work with a realtor to make sure your best interests are first and foremost.
6. They Are Unprofessional
If your real estate agent is unprofessional in their behavior, interactions with others that are involved in your home sale or purchase, or communications, it’s a pretty good sign you’ve ended up with a bad real estate agent.
Meeting with potential agents to gauge their professionalism ahead of time is always a wise idea, as is getting referrals from friends and family. Find an agent who shows the utmost professionalism, as they represent you in the transaction.
7. They Are Unethical
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) has a Code of Ethics and Standards that licensed real estate agents must abide by. If you think that your realtor is unethical and is breaking these standards, not only should you consider finding a new agent, but you may also want to file a formal complaint against them in your state.
8. They Are Inexperienced
Everyone has to start somewhere and all realtors were new and inexperienced at some point. You may not want to take a chance on an inexperienced agent if they haven’t represented many buyers or sellers simply because they don’t know the ins and outs of the process.
Inexperience doesn’t always mean “bad” though, so go with your gut. If you think that their inexperience won’t be an issue, then give them a chance.
9. They Are Unorganized
Organization and timeliness are key components of successful real estate transactions. Many contracts and decisions are time-sensitive, so if your realtor is not cognizant of these dates and timeframes, huge oversights could happen.
For example, if you are under contract to purchase a home, you typically will only have a short time frame to back out of the contract without financial penalty. If your agent is on top of this, you might find yourself in a situation where you need to get out of the contract but have missed that window.
Don’t Let a Bad Real Estate Agent Ruin Your Experience
Whether you’re buying or selling your home, don’t let a bad real estate agent ruin the experience. It’s a big event in your life. It’s either one of the biggest purchases you will ever make or you’re selling a home that you’ve grown to love.
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