What Real Estate CRM Can Offer You

CRM software

Real estate agents who are looking to increase the number of clients that they take on and want to earn more commission are always wanting to find new tools and resources to use. Real estate CRM is one of the most effective types of software to use to improve productivity and stay organized. When learning more about the program, there are a few common features that CRM offers.

Email Tracking
Many agents struggle with staying organized with all of the emails that they receive or finding pertinent information with property timelines or the vendor preferences of certain clients. Instead of losing information that you’ll likely need in the future, you can enjoy the convenience of having all of the data that you need on hand and doing a quick search through your emails to obtain the results you need in seconds. You’ll have the ability to integrate certain email services that include Outlook or Gmail for added convenience.

Mobile Functionality
One of the most common struggles for agents is having access to their email and important data that is needed throughout the day without being tied to their computer. Real Estate CRM makes it easy to have full mobile functionality on tablets and smartphones without having to only rely on a desktop computer. This makes it easier to have real estate contact management or access important data when you’re in an off-site meeting. This can improve your productivity throughout the day and make it easier to get in contact with your clients at a faster rate, which will make you more valuable as a professional in the industry.

Automate Lead Capturing
All of the leads that you obtain from websites or vendors are transferred to your database with an email alert that you receive when you obtain a new lead each time. You’ll even have the option of transferring your new leads to your monthly distribution list that is sent out, which can save you time and will allow you to gain more clients.

Maintain Your Client Database
One of the most common mistakes that real estate agents make is failing to stay connected to their former clients after the transaction is completed. Real Estate CRM makes it possible to stay organized with your former clients’ birthdays with automated reminders that allow you to contact them and ensure that you stay in the back of their mind when they’re getting ready to buy or sell again in the near future.

You’ll also have the ability to manage market events or build a business directory. Agents can even use a dashboard that makes it possible to maintain communication with former clients in one place with the activities and communications that are used. There are over 100,000 real estate agents in Canada, you’ll need all the help you can get to maintain a competitive edge.

6 Real Estate Marketing Tips That Work

Real Estate Marketing Tips

To succeed in marketing real estate, you will need to use certain time-tested techniques that reach potential buyers and sellers and prompt them to contact you for more information, Right from the start, you should determine just who you potential clients are and why the would be interested in the various property choices you have listed. This is especially true for those realtors who take care of the marketing part of their business themselves, and it is very important for them to learn how to outpace the competition in order to close the deal. What follow are six ideas for doing exactly that.

1. Today buyers often look for properties that interest them by searching the Internet and visiting websites that describe properties that are currently on the market. If you list your properties on reputable, well-known sites, you can easily attract potential buyers who are looking for the exactly kind of properties you have for sale. In addition, remember to register in a number of internet directories, which will also make it easier for them to find you as they conduct their search.

2. Another good way to market your properties is to send an e-newsletter to your potential customers on a monthly basis. They will find this information to be very useful because it is really a database filled with relevant email addresses, and you will also want to make certain that the content is both interesting and informative.

3. Flyers are another good way to advertise, and they are relatively inexpensive to produce and easy to distribute. Note that your flyer’s design should be both visually appealing and well-organized, and you can find some good examples of professional flyers to use as a guide by going online.

4. Many people seem to think that print advertising isn’t nearly as effective as it used to be, but it is still being used extensively to market real estate in the United States. Potential homeowners and others who are serious about buying property know where to go to find the latest listings, and you will want to focus on these publications as part of your marketing campaign. Also, when you advertise in your area newspaper, make a special effort to be creative and stand out from the competition.

5. Business cards have been an essential marketing tool for decades in many industries and professions, and successful realtors will tell you that they are a direct line of communication between themselves and potential customers. Of course, the card you choose should have a professional look and contain essential information, including your company’s name, your contact information and your area of specialization.

6. Sidewalk signs can also be an effective marketing tool because consumers will get to know your company’s name if you use them. While they might not have any interest in purchasing property initially, if the time comes when they do and they decide to contact a real estate agent, your company could be the very first one they think of.

 

Photo credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/6966574400449234/

5 Traits Your Real Estate Agent Should Have

Real estate agent

 

When looking to buy or sell a home, it is important to find a good real estate agent or realtor. Since there is so much to consider when buying or selling, you want to make sure you have someone helping you every step of the way.

To make sure you find the best realtor in your area, look for these five important traits:

Licensed: the first thing you want to do is make sure you have a licensed realtor who is knowledgeable. Not just anyone can help with buying and selling homes. Some skill, knowledge and licensing is required to be a good realtor. It’s also helpful to make sure he or she is in good standing. For instance, if you were to research him or her online, you only want to find good things. The Internet can be very helpful with finding a good realtor, so take some time to research him or her.

Familiar with local area: to find your dream home, your realtor must be familiar with your taste and the local area that you’re interested in. It’s helpful when a realtor has experience in one certain area. He or she can show you places you never knew existed, and other areas that you may never have considered.

Personable: a realtor should also be friendly and personable. To make selling or buying a home more enjoyable, you want to feel like you’re welcomed by your realtor. If you feel as though you’re bothering him or her all the time, you need to find a new realtor. He or she should be willing to help in any way and with a smile.

Communicates well: since new homes are put on the market each day, it’s important to have good communication with your realtor. Good communication leads to more sales and happier buyers and sellers. If you don’t have good communication, you may miss out on the home of your dreams or lose a sale because of a lack of communication. Try to find a realtor that is attached to his or her phone and works full-time.

Technology: although some of the older realtors stick to tips and tricks from the past, it’s helpful to have a realtor that is tech savvy. When a realtor is tech savvy, he or she can communicate better, be on top of new listings and make the buying and selling process easier. There are all sorts of social media and real estate websites that make buying and selling a home easier. If your realtor can fill you in on these, it will be helpful to both of you. Although not everyone likes to stay up to date with technology, it can make things much more convenient.

As you can see, there is a lot to look for when searching for a realtor. Take time to do your research, and see who is available to help you in your area. From ratings and reviews online to recommendations from friends and family members, you want to make sure your realtor has these five traits at a minimum.

Why are more homeowners choosing alternative lending solutions?

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Modern banking continues to evolve as the amount of capital available has reached record highs. Traditional banks have been bogged down in some non-performing loans and are hesitant to make certain types of loans. Why are more homeowners choosing alternative lending firms, such as mortgage investment corporation?

“Less Paperwork”

Large Canadian banks have numerous regulations, rules and forms, which each branch is forced to use. Some of these financial institutions are spending more time adhering to international regulations, than on providing suitable financial packages to local borrowers.

Alternative mortgage lending can focus on the “market boutique niche” of providing unique, customized housing loans to its customers. These alternative lenders have reduced the paperwork and have a more streamlined application process.

“More Flexibility”

Big, unwieldy banks must follow the rules of their headquarters, even when it takes a lot of time. Many of the local bank employees don’t even understand half of the regulations, but they still adhere to them and do everything “by the book.” This can create a very stifling, robotic loan application process.

The non-traditional lenders have more flexibility. They can tailor the application process and loans to your specific needs by cutting out unnecessary steps.

“Higher Risk Tolerance”

Many large banks have been corralled into an institutional framework where they are required to make certain loans to governments. This has lead to the “crowding out effect” where individuals are the lowest man on the totem pole competing for very scarce capital. The large banks have a very low risk tolerance after the Credit Crunch of 2008; many continue to clean up their balance sheets.

Over the last decade, the mortgage rates have also started to diverge between traditional and alternative lenders. Alternative lenders may have a higher risk tolerance because they are depending on a more aggressive interest rate benchmark than the traditional banks.

“More Personal”

Some of the large banks have forgotten the core mission of the industry. Financial packages must be carefully and specifically tailored to meet the needs of each individual. The “cookie cutter” approach may work with large corporations, but is not as successful in the Canadian mortgage industry.

Alternative financiers can look more closely at your specific needs. You might be talking directly with the individual who can approve your loan. This creates a faster and more consistent process. The mortgage investment corporation can provide the personal touch in providing you the necessary capital that you need for your new home.

Valuable mortgage investments have attracted more types of lenders into the industry. This variety has allowed individuals with sub-par credit to enjoy the same benefits of home ownership as others. Homeowners are finding that the doors of alternative lending firms are wide open and mortgage capital is readily available.

How Real Estate Agents Simplify Homebuying

Real estate

In today’s market, buying a home is far from a simple process. The huge selection of homes available can make it nearly impossible for the average buyer to tour many properties before buying. With so many homes on the market, it can also be hard to separate essential requirements from the less important details of desirable properties. A good real estate agent can simplify the buying process and make the entire ordeal much easier, from start to finish. Here’s a look at how real estate agents Toronto ease the purchasing process for modern buyers.

Real Estate Connections

With so many properties changing hands on the open market, it can be practically impossible for buyers to even be aware of many of them. A well-connected real estate agent is a powerful ally in this situation. With friends and business partners at various levels of the local market, both online and offline, an agent can identify properties of interest and seize opportunities for tours and inquiries. In this situation, a real estate agent acts as a true insider with access to fresh listings that are barely available to the open market.

Buying Expertise

Buying a home involves intricacies that few people have to deal with in daily life. Realtors, by contrast, have made a career out of handling these complicated issues. By retaining a reliable agent, homebuyers can count on having a valuable ally on their side during the shopping, purchasing and closing sections of the buying timeline. Realtors will be aware of hidden opportunities for financial savings that most homebuyers aren’t even aware of. At closing time, buyers with realtors on their side can often save serious money.

Area Familiarity

This is especially valuable for people moving to new areas, but even local homebuyers can benefit from the familiarity brought to the table by experienced realtors. With just a little information about favored community conveniences, schools and environment, these agents can be a big help in identifying areas of interest. From there, buyers can browse at will, but realtors are often already familiar with many properties meeting specified criteria. This can streamline the buying process from start to finish.

Realtors often know the advantages of each area buyers consider moving to. Local schools, restaurants and access to transportation corridors are all exclusive tidbits that may be offered by agents. To consider all these variables without the help of experienced realtors, many hours of intense research would be needed, which is rarely practical.

Closing Benefits

Agents have significant experience in the closing process. When buyers are ready to buy a home, realtors can make things easier and increase the likelihood of receiving discounts during the final stages of the buying process. Legal issues that might confound many buyers can usually be resolved by an experienced agent.

The real estate market is often an intimidating place for homebuyers. With an experienced agent, the process of buying a new home is vastly simplified. In many cases, new homebuyers can count on getting a better home for a lower price than if they had approached the market alone.

Restructure Your Finances with a Second Mortgage

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If you owe a lot of debt and own a home, one way to achieve a much cleaner financial slate is by taking out a second mortgage Ontario. Second mortgages typically take the form of home equity loans, and they are popularly used to consolidate debt or to make major purchases for things like sending the kids to college or having a major renovation performed on the house. As long as you are eligible for another mortgage and can get a competitive interest rate, it may be the best and most affordable way to restructure your finances and break the vicious debt cycle.

One Payment with a Lower Interest Rate

Like many people, you may owe a lot of money to credit card companies. That debt may come along with a fairly high interest rate, so chipping away at it isn’t easy. In addition to that, keeping up with all of those payments is a big ordeal. With a home equity loan, you can take out a single loan and use it to pay off all of those credit cards and other loans. What’s even better is that you should be able to get a very competitive interest rate.

Qualifying for a Second Mortgage

Before you get too excited about taking out a home equity loan, make sure that you’re eligible to get one. Simply owning a home isn’t enough. Lenders take many things into consideration when deciding whether or not to give people second mortgages. A few of the top examples include:

Equity – You need to have a decent amount of equity in your first mortgage in order to qualify for a second one. This can be a problem these days because many people are underwater on their mortgages, which means that they owe more than their homes are worth and have negative equity.

Excellent Credit – You won’t be able to get another mortgage unless your credit is in good shape. Ideally, it should be excellent. If there are a few blemishes right now, you should work on cleaning them up before applying for another loan. Sign up for credit monitoring services and do what you can to achieve a better credit score. In addition to helping you qualify for another mortgage, this will make it easier to get a competitive interest rate.

A Good Debt-to-Income Ratio – Lenders will also want to see that you aren’t completely overwhelmed by debt. If you owe far more than you earn, you may be out of luck. There are sometimes exceptions for people who will use their new mortgages to consolidation debt, so make sure to check.

Shop Around

If you do qualify, don’t apply for another mortgage until you’ve shopped around a little. Some lenders offer better interest rates than others. Another thing to consider is how much you will have to pay at closing. Without weighing the available options, you won’t be able to get the lowest closing costs. By getting a low interest rate and low closing costs, you will start off with the best terms possible.

Signs That You Need To Contact A Plumber

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Your Plumber to the Rescue
Homeowners know having a reliable plumber Toronto at their beck and call is part of homeownership. Sooner or later, new home or old, you’ll need a plumber. Why not take the time to insure you have the best possible plumbing services before you need them? For homeowners, businesses and apartment dwellers plumbing help is needed for several reasons:

. Old pipes
. New pipes with flawed fabrication design
. Leaky faucets
. Installing/replacing a new water heater
. Worn laundry room piping connections
. Water pressure too high/too low
. Major flooding from a large water line break

Beware of Aging Pipes
A plumbing professional can perform annual audits and check-ups on older piping systems. In older homes, it’s essential to know the actual integrity of the piping system to avoid major repairs from normal wear and tear.

New Pipes In New Homes
New pipes installed during new construction can be fabricated from substandard material, although they may meet compliance regulations. Or, in some cases, the actual piping design may be somewhat flawed. This isn’t the fault of plumbing professionals. It’s usually a result of some manufacturing defect or quality control issue. A “first-time” plumbing review in a newer home will prevent costly future problems.

Installing/Replacing a Water Heater
In addition to piping services, a plumbing expert will install or replace a water heater. In some communities, only a licensed plumbing professional can install or replace a water heater. The plumbing expert will also advise on correct water temperature settings.

Worn Laundry Room Connections
A washing machine gets regular use. This means that the inlets and outlets become worn fairly quickly. The next thing you know, the floor has a pool of water from a worn out inlet or outlet. Call your plumbing professional and this is one problem that disappears quickly.

Water Pressure Too High/Too Low
Another instance where your plumbing professional can be of valuable assistance is water pressure. Water pressure that’s too high can be just as annoying as water pressure that’s too low. However, high water pressure can also wear piping systems faster. This is an issue you can feel free to discuss with a plumbing expert.

Major Flooding From a Large Water Line Break
Ever notice how a major flood seems to occur while residents are away on vacation? That’s a nightmare most occupants of a home would rather not endure. Yet, there are occurrences when this can and does happen with frequency. It may begin as a backup from an exterior municipal water main. It can also be one of the main water lines in the home has worn or been damaged. This is one of the times when you’ll want help as quickly as possible. You’ll need a plumber who can be there to react quickly to your emergency and restore the normal order to your living environment.

How To Choose A Plumbing Expert
. Ask for references from friends and neighbors
. Check that licensing is current
. Ask for references from the plumbing professional

The Ultimate Guide For Buying A Condo in Toronto

Toronto condo guide

Buying a condo can seem like a daunting process for first time buyers. From getting approved for a loan to finding the perfect place, the steps toward purchasing a condo can take months. The best way to get a good deal is to become informed about the marketplace. New buyers are often uninformed about the real estate market and uncertain how the process of buying a home works. To get ahead of the game, learn more from tips provided by TorontoCondoTeam.ca about the process of buying Toronto condos.

Money, Money, Money

To purchase a condo, you need money. Since most people do not have thousands of dollars on hand, you will need to visit your bank or mortgage broker. Once at the bank, fill out forms to become pre-approved for a mortgage. Most banks will require you to submit your pay stubs and yearly income. With the current economy, you will also need to have a good credit score or a significant down payment.

Before you even look at your first condo, you need to know what your price range is. By visiting a mortgage broker first, you can find out how large your loan can be. Afterward, you can ensure that whatever condo you look at is within your financial means.

Get Help

Navigating the real estate market is difficult for a buyer. To find the best deals and complete a purchase, you will need to have a real estate broker. Find a real estate broker that you trust and who is reliable. This person will be in charge of steering you to the right condo. Too often, brokers become interested in taking home their commission. You want to select someone who has your best interests in mind and not just their paycheck.

Looking for Properties

Once you have found a real estate broker, share your ideas with them. Only you know exactly what you are searching for in a home. Tell them how many rooms, the location and price range you are looking at so they can help you to achieve your dreams.

After the real estate broker knows what you are looking for, they will begin showing you different Toronto condos. The broker will make sure that any property you look at fits your unique interests and needs. While you are out looking at a condo, look carefully at the unit. Consider if the location around the Greater Toronto Area is convenient for you and if the amenities suit your needs. From landscape fees to gym memberships, a condo can offer a wide range of extra amenities. If you do not need the extra amenities, try finding a cheaper condo without all the miscellaneous trappings. With the current real estate market, you will also want to carefully consider if the property value will go up in the future. A higher price now does not necessarily mean that you will be able to sell it for more later on.

Due Diligence

If you have found the perfect condo, tell your realtor. They will research the unit and see if it is worth the current price. Before it is purchased, the realtor will also carry out their due diligence to make sure you are informed about any potential issues.

Once due diligence is complete, it will be time for you to make an offer. Your realtor will already have calculated what the property is worth. Normally, they will send in an offer that is lower than what you plan on paying for it. If you need to, you can have a lawyer review any documents or price offers. Once the offer has been decided on, the realtor will submit it to the realtor selling the property. The other party has a set amount of time to consider the offer and return it. Within this time period, you are held to your offer. If the seller chooses to accept it, you are not allowed to back out. Once this irrevocable date passes by, you are no longer held to the terms of the offer.

Buying the Condo

If the seller agrees to the price, you can purchase the condo. Sometimes, the seller will choose to have a sell it conditionally. Normally, a seller will choose to sell it conditionally if they want their lawyer to review the contract or want to ensure your financing plan works out. If they choose to sell it conditionally, you will be able to have a short period of time to back out of the conditions if you want to. After all of the conditions are met, you will sign off on a waiver and the deal is complete.

Exchanging Keys

All that is left for the buyer is to pay for the house and get the keys. At this point, the lawyers, buyer and seller meet to make the exchange. The title of the condo will be switched over to you and you will retain ownership. At this point, you have completed the process of buying a condo!

The best way for you to get a good deal on a condo is to find a real estate agent you trust. Choosing a home and making an offer can be stressful for even experienced home buyers. Find an agent you trust and spend time looking for a condo suited for your specific needs. After all, most people will live in their condo for years or decades. Select the right condo now so that you will enjoy your property for years to come.

How Much Is Your Home Really Worth

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Whether you are looking at selling your home, or you have simply decided that you want to know more about what your property is worth, it is time to look into the value of the property that you own. Real estate is a tricky field and there are a number of different variables to consider with regards to the valuation of any property.

Compare and Contrast
When you are first looking at a piece of real estate to determine its value, start by looking up various properties of a similar size and appearance that have sold within the last six months. If you are looking at your own house, take a look at the houses around yours. In some cases, you will be lucky and the property in question will be on a track with many other examples of the same layout or floor plan. If you cannot find comparable pieces of property near you, you can expand your search, though this introduces a greater margin of error. When possible, stay close to home.

This phase of the valuation process requires some research from you. Take a moment to get online and to find houses for sale in your area. All the houses in one area tend to have features that make them comparable to one another, and the closer a house is to you, the more likely it is that the price will be similar. You can also contact a local real estate agent for recent prices of sold houses in the area that you live.

Once you have at least five to seven examples of properties that are similar to the one in question, add the values together and then divide by the number of samples that you have found. This gives you a rough average of what these properties are worth.

Evaluation
Now take a frank look at the property in question. Realtors often say that there are no two pieces of property that are alike, and the same is true for any property that you are currently looking at. What benefits have you added to the home? Things like new additions, pools or sheds can add greatly to a property’s value. Walled yards and extra garage spaces can also do a great deal to add to a home’s value. Conversely, there are also things that can pull away value, like damage to the home or a very small lot.

Compiling Data
Once you have enumerated the additions and the problems, add them to the average that you have previously found. This gives you a very rough idea of what the property in question is worth on the current market. The more data that you have taken into account, the more accurate your reading will be.

Remember that there are many different variables that can affect the value of a piece of a real estate. When in doubt, speak to a professional and get a professional assessment done. This ensures that you won’t sell a piece of property for far too little money.

Things You Need To Know Before Buying A Condo

Newly completed high rise condominium buildings with a swimming pool

Condos are unique real estate properties. They combine the low maintenance lifestyle of apartments with the benefits of home ownership. If you enjoy apartment living, then chances are a condo is right for you. Use this short guide to help you make the best decision when purchasing your new home.

Get to know the HOA
If you have only lived in single family homes, chances are you’ve never had to deal with a homeowner’s association, or HOA, unless your home belonged to a neighborhood. Even then, the HOA for condos is a different entity than the ones for single family neighborhoods. Both enforce the rules of the area, but because all condos share the same building, these rules are often far more stringent. They can include not letting you paint your front door or keep a pet. The HOA can even not let you rent out your condo.
Therefore, before purchasing any condo, you will need to read the HOA bylaws. If you have trouble deciphering the bylaws, use the help of a real estate lawyer to make sure you understand what you are signing. Once you purchase the condo, you are consenting to abide by all the rules of the HOA. If you don’t follow the rules, the HOA can legally evict you from your home.

Check out who manages the property
Like the HOA, knowing who manages the condo property is also important. Many condo communities offer excellent amenities, like swimming pools, fitness centers and parks. However, if these properties are not kept up, the entire community will suffer, creating lower property values. Do your part to avoid any unfortunate surprises by looking into the management company. You can do this on your own or through a real estate lawyer. If the management is currently embroiled in several legal battles across the country, it’s a good bet that they have a bad track record. Don’t buy into a condo that will not be properly cared for by management.

Know how many condos are owner occupied
This is particularly important early on for financing reasons. Government mortgage companies like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac often won’t provide financing for complexes who aren’t at least 2/3 owner occupied, meaning that the owner of the condo lives in the unit. This is done to help ensure that the property maintains its value, since owners usually take better care of their unit than renters.

Understand the rental policy
If you are buying the condo as an investment property, then you need to understand the rental policy for the units. This is often managed by the HOA. Some associations are quite strict and may not allow more than 10% of all units to be rented out at one time. Typically, a HOA made up of owner-occupiers have a more stringent rental policy than a HOA made up of owners who bought their condo for investment purposes. Again, be sure to check your HOA bylaws for the specific rental policy before purchasing the condo.

Benefits To Using Real Estate Agent To Buy Or Sell

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Real estate agents are trained to provide a variety of property services for homebuyers and sellers. Some real estate agents offer specialty services. You may contact an agent who specializes in helping first-time homebuyers, investors or to obtain help with relocation services. Many agents work a variety of hours. A professional property agent can help you with your realty needs.

Whether you are buying or selling a home, an agent who understands the local realty laws and the market demographics can provide valuable knowledge. Using a variety of tools, realty agents can study comparable sales data in areas that you want to buy or sell a home. The information obtained might provide a basis for a specific listing price or a purchase offer. Realty agents are knowledgeable about customary practices and certain industry standards. Instead of risking a variety of potential pitfalls, you can enlist the services of a professional realty agent.

In addition to holding state-issued licenses, realty agents often pursue other forms of accreditations. Many agents obtain continuing education and various industry certifications. Special training sessions and seminars are used to enhance an agent’s knowledge and professionalism. These skills can often justify the cost of hiring a professional service provider.

A professional realty agent frequently uses a vast amount of resources. Typically, an agent has relationships with local home inspectors, appraisers, attorneys, mortgage specialists, insurance agents, title specialists and consumer credit specialists. If you are buying or selling a home, you may need to rely on several of the aforementioned specialists. Your agent can provide a list of reputable service providers who have delivered favorable results in the past. Using the resources of a professional agent, you may be able to navigate away from the path of unscrupulous operators.

Some realty agents work independently. Many agents work for large or small brokerages. The service fees largely depend on a company’s policies or the amount of work that an agent is expected to perform. Some realty companies charge a flat listing or selling fee. Your agent’s fee might be based on a percentage of the property’s selling price or the purchase price. Generally, realty agents work on commission. Many agents will discuss a negotiated commission or a flexible payment arrangement.

Realty agents may be located within your local telephone directory or online. Typically, a consumer can search for realty agents by county or their zip code. Many agents advertise in classified newspapers, financial magazines, new home periodicals, coffee shops, libraries and a variety of other places. You can ask friends or members of your family to recommend a competent realty agent. Many homeowners will share their past experiences with local realty agents.

Professional real estate agents specialize in staging homes, finding foreclosures, implementing pricing strategies and recognizing local market trends. Using various resources, you can find a real estate agent to help with your next real property transaction.