Real Estate Reference Let the Real Estate Buyer Prepare: Internet Tools to Assist
Sunday 17 February
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  by Martin Winer

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  Let the Real Estate Buyer Prepare:
Internet Tools to Assist in Your Search for a Real Estate Agent

Real Estate transactions evoke the most sense of trepidation amongst consumers. After all, these are the transactions where the largest amounts of money exchange hands. Who is there to guide you through the process? Most of us turn to a seasoned real estate agent to help.

With an average commission of 5% coupled with the fact that you are often 'married' to an agent for some period, it's essential to check their reputation before sign the nuptials. Word of mouth recommendations are one way to put your mind to ease, but failing that, the Internet, until recently, didn't have much to offer.

The Internet featured hundreds of referral sites yet all of them lack prominent ratings provided by the actual consumers that have interacted with them. Many referral sites feature pages of sponsored ads which cloud any useful data. Others offer extensive information about a given agent, such as, the agent's pets and number of children the agent has. While that's nice to know, it's useless in answering four important questions about your perspective agent:

1) Integrity: Was the agent honest and loyal to past customers' interests?
2) Quality of the Deal: Did the agent strike a good deal for his/her past customers?
3) Recommendation: Would past customers recommend this agent to their friends?
4) Availability: Did the agent expeditiously respond to past customers' requests?
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