House hunting is nothing like how they show it on television. It is often very stressful and can send you through a whirlwind of emotions. Thats why it is important to have a good realtor who can help you make informed decisions.
A realtor is supposed to be your advocate
A realtor, just like any professional, is there to help you and have your best interests in mind. They are there to set up showings of potential houses and to be your advocate at the negotiating table.
We did our homework before selecting our realtor in the first place. By myself and my fiancé asked around our offices for recommendations and we came up with the names of a few local realtors. After checking them out online we went with one who multiple of our coworkers recommended and had great reviews online.
Why we fired our realtor
The first week our two with our realtor was interesting. She set us up with her companies version of Zillow.com and we were able to see different properties. She asked us to select a handful so that we could go see them and so that she could get an idea of what we were after. The next weekend we met her at the first home and everything went well. She told us that she would set up a meeting with us to give her feedback and then she would pick some more homes.
Well that meeting never really happened. She called us later in the week and asked if we had seen any more homes on the website. We had made a list so we went ahead and sent it over to her and she arranged the showings. They all went fine until we went to a house that we knew was going to need some work. She refused to step foot into the home. By no means was it scary, (unless 80’s wallpaper scares you) but she flat our refused to step in the door. To top it off she did not have any information for us on the homes that we were looking at. Every question I asked was answered with “I will email the answer to you later”. Needless to say I was upset.
How did we break it off
That night my fiancé and I hit the real estate website again but we finally asked ourselves why we were doing the work that our realtor said she was going to do for us. We were researching pricing, comparable, how long homes had been on the market. Essentially all our realtor was doing was unlocking the lockbox for us. I asked my fiancé what the point was to having a realtor if she was not going to even help us in the slightest.
The next morning I went ahead and called her to let her know that we were going to be taking a break from actively looking at homes. I told her that we were just not happy with what we had seen and that we were disappointed that she did not have any recommendations for us. She sounded a bit disappointed but wished us the best for the future.
Check out my article on: DIY projects and repairs: 18 months of homeownership
What did we learn out of all of this chaos
Fortunately we were lucky and fell into a fantastic situation about a month later. (More on that later) We learned a great deal about real estate from all the research that we had to do. I think I can now name off the price ranges of every neighborhood in a 5 mile radius. Finally we now know what upgrades will benefit our home the most.
Thinking back we should probably have gone to a real estate company and asked to have them match us with the person who could best fulfill our needs. I have no regrets firing our realtor. If I had treated a client that way with such little regard I would have fired myself. It all has to do with customer service and if a realtor wants to receive a paycheck for their services then they need to actually earn it.