Choosing The Right Agent

Buying and/or selling a home is a big deal, and can be extremely stressful. It’s important to know that you’ve chosen the right Real Estate Agent to represent you so that, even if things get stressful, you can feel safe in the knowledge that your agent is doing their absolute best on your behalf.

Lately, I’ve heard a few comments about clients wanting to go with an “experienced” agent over a newer one. While this makes general sense, I wanted to give a more broad understanding of the pros and cons of newer versus experienced agents, and why I believe it is most important to judge an agent on their individual merits.

Agents who have been in the business for 20-30 years or so will, of course, have more experience than a newer agent. While this is important, sometimes it can mean that they’ve also picked up some bad habits over the years, whereas a newer agent is fresh out of school, and so concerned with doing things right that they cross all of their t’s and dot all of their i’s twice. While in my first year of working in this business, I found myself taking papers to be signed by clients at midnight, in a snowstorm. While feeling ridiculous relating this to my then broker, I was told that this is a great aspect of new agents. Concern over details and a desire to get things done quickly and properly is a good habit!

Newer agents tend to have fewer clients than more seasoned agents. They might be working with 1-3 clients at a time, whereas some other agents may have upwards of 10 on the go. Fewer clients can mean more time spent concentrating on you and your needs.

Building a business (at least for me) means making your clients so happy that they tell everyone how fabulous you are and that they should hire you. As much as I love working with brand new people, there’s something pretty special about having someone call you because their friend so-and-so recommended you. Keeping those relationships strong is so important, both personally, and for building a successful referral business.

Lots of new agents partner up with a mentor, or more experienced agent. This can give you the best of both worlds! You get the enthusiasm and new tricks of a newer agent, with the wisdom and guidance of a more seasoned mentor. Last year I chose to move brokerages to work with David Mackenzie, an agent with over 30 years of experience and who is the current President of the Winnipeg Real Estate Board. I feel that the combination of newer ideas and technology with years of experience and wisdom is a great one.

My point is that when deciding which agent to work with, you should look at their capabilities, marketing plan, and other attributes more than simply the number of years they’ve got under their belt. Old or new, you want an agent you can be happy with and confident in the choice you’ve made.