BBB offers tips to make hiring a real estate professional easier


By John North - Contributing columnist



At the start of the pandemic, most people didn’t want to buy or sell a home, but that quickly changed.

The housing market heated up as house prices rose and mortgage rates were low. In fact, sales of existing homes plunged nearly 18% from March to April and another 10% from April to May, but they shot up nearly 21% in June, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The strong demand for homes is likely to continue. If you’re looking for your dream home, Better Business Bureau recommends you find a trustworthy real estate professional whether it’s a realtor, real estate agent or broker.

BBB offers these tips for finding a real estate professional:

• Get referrals from family and friends.

• Attend open houses to see if you connect with a professional.

• Shop around. Select a customer-focused professional who’s a consultant and salesperson.

• Find at least three real estate professionals with positive online reviews. Make sure they know the area you’re interested in.

• Ask for references and contact them first-hand to see if the real estate professional is going to be a good fit for you.

• Check to see if the real estate professional is licensed or certified in the state of Ohio and belongs to a professional association like the National Association of Realtors.

• Ask questions. (How long have you been a realtor? How many houses have you sold in the past year? Have you worked in my area before? What are your fees and/or commission?)

• Make sure the real estate professional knows what you’re looking for in a home, such as area, bedrooms, bathrooms, yard size, etc. Also, make sure he or she knows your timeline.

• Read your contract. Don’t use a realtor who pressures you to sign right away. If you’re selling your home, you’ll sign the rights for the professional to sell your property in a certain time frame. Make sure you are aware of the length of time.

Put the BBB to work for you, too. It can provide you a list of BBB Accredited Businesses in the industry and Business Profiles on real estate professionals you’re considering.

Visit BBB.org or call 937-222-5825 or 800-776-5301.

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By John North

Contributing columnist

The writer is the president and CEO of Better Business Bureau serving Dayton and Miami Valley.

The writer is the president and CEO of Better Business Bureau serving Dayton and Miami Valley.