Time to Say 'I Do' To a New Home?
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5 questions to ask when hiring a real estate professional
With about 75,000 real estate professionals in Ontario, how do you pick the one that is right for you?
“It’s always a good idea to meet with at least a few different real estate professionals before selecting who you will work with,” says RECO Registrar Joseph Richer. “Consider asking friends or family to recommend a broker or salesperson.” When you have your shortlist of representatives ready, consider asking these questions to find out which representative is right for you.
1. Tell me about your real estate experience.
Experience is about more than how many years someone has been in business. Take the time to learn about the types of properties they typically work with, which cities or areas they work in, and how many homes of the type you are looking for they helped buy or sell in the past year or two.
2. Tell me your general approach to buying or selling and how your approach would best suit my needs.
For the buying side of things, how will the representative search for suitable properties and what is their approach to negotiations? When selling, how will your home be marketed to help attract the right prospective buyers? By understanding their approach, you’ll know what to expect and will be able to determine which representative is aligned with your preferences.
3. Tell me about the services you would provide and any different options or services that may or may not be included.
Discuss your particular needs and expectations to ensure they are able to provide the services you want. For example, when selling, will the representative have professional photos taken of your home or prepare multimedia promotional materials? Will they host open houses? What about advertising? Understanding exactly what services will be provided, and later documenting them in your written contract, will help avoid misunderstandings later on.
4. Tell me about the commission or fees I would pay.
Commissions and fees can vary between brokerages and for the services provided, so be sure to understand what will be provided, and what it will cost. Keep in mind that, as with most things, the cheapest deal is not necessarily the best one.
5. Do you have references?
As with most job interviews, getting in touch with references is an important step before hiring someone. Were past clients pleased with their experience? Was the representative responsive and easy to get in touch with? Would they recommend them to others? Buying and selling a home is a major decision, so it’s important to take the time to find the right representative for you. As the final step before committing to a representative, use the ‘real estate professional search’ feature at www.reco.on.ca to confirm they are registered with RECO.

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5 tips for navigating an uncertain real estate market
For most of us, real estate transactions are the biggest financial transactions of our lives. So before you embark on the buying and selling process, here are some tips to help get you started you get started in an uncertain market.
1. Shop around
With more than 75,000 real estate professionals in Ontario, how do you pick the one that is right for you? It’s always a good idea to meet with at least a few different real estate professionals before selecting who you will work with. Consider asking friends or family to recommend a broker or salesperson. When you have your shortlist of representatives ready, consider asking these questions to find out which representative is right for you. It’s a great way to determine whether you and your rep will be on the same page.

1. Tell me about your real estate experience.
2. Tell me your general approach to buying or selling and how your approach would best suit my needs.
3. Tell me about the services you would provide and any different options or services that may or may not be included.
4. Tell me about the commission or fees I would pay.
5. Do you have references?
2. Look them up
Before hiring a salesperson or broker, check out RECO’s Real Estate Professional Search tool, at the top right corner of our website. Confirm they’re registered and in good standing.
3. Read and understand everything before you sign
It can be tempting to speed the process along by signing forms that you haven’t read. After all, nobody really likes reading the fine print. But taking the time to understand what you’re signing can avoid a lot of problems later on.
4. Know your tolerance for risk
If you’re buying a home, you may be tempted to submit an offer without any conditions attached so that you can get a leg up on the competition. But are you comfortable taking on that level of risk? Can you afford to fix an issue with the home that an inspection otherwise may have detected? Will you be OK should you lose your deposit if a lender denies you financing? Consider all outcomes before committing to a decision.
5. Remember, you own the process
Your representative is a great source of information to offer guidance. But you’re in the driver seat. Don’t make a decision unless you are well informed and comfortable with it.
 
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