This morning I stumbled upon the worst real estate investment advice I’ve ever read.
Not to use a Realtor in the early stages of looking for property.
You might get pressured into buying something.
I suppose smoking is really good for you too.
If I could make people buy property, would I still be working? Or would I be retired?
And if I were working just to “keep busy”, would it be here? Or in Malibu, where both the weather and the prices are sunnier?
Just as in every other profession, there are good agents and well, stereotypes. By en large, most of the agents left in the business are the former.
A good Realtor is your advocate. The state says she has a fiduciary duty to look out for her clients best interests at all times. If she’s a member of the National Association of Realtors, she also has an ethical duty to do so. And, in light of all of the present suffering in the real estate market, most agents believe they also have a moral responsibility to protect their clients.
A good Realtor, competent in the multi-family field, will be your teacher. She will show you how to calculate the numbers, guide you in evaluating opportunities, and continue to be a resource long after you’ve been given the keys to your first building.
A good Realtor will develop an understanding of what your ideal property looks like. When she sees one; either on the MLS or while speaking with potential sellers, you will be her first phone call.
Even in this “buyer’s market”, the great deals go from “just listed” to “sold” in a single day. By the time buyers not working with agents see these listings on Trulia.com or Realtor.com, it’s too late; they’re usually already sold.
Most importantly, an experienced agent will keep you from making a bad deal. And to me, there’s nothing more important than that.