"How to Find a Real Estate Agent / Property Agent"
A good real estate agent – or "rental property agent" as I'll call it here – is by far the most important person on your team. Therefore, finding a rental property agent is job #1.
PROPERTY AGENT RESPONSIBILITIES
Your agent will be the one that:
- Informs you of what 2-4 unit multifamily rental properties are available to buy within your target area.
- Educates you on the "real world" ins-and-outs of the business.
- Provides referrals that will help you build your team over time.
- Fully coordinates the process of
buying rental property
on your behalf, including all negotiations, requirements, and paperwork.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A REAL ESTATE AGENT
First and foremost, you'll want an investment property agent that specializes in
Ideally, the agent will also have his/her own portfolio of multifamily properties, although this is not a hard and fast requirement. What matters is the agent's multifamily experience, because:
real estate negotiating process
for buying rental properties is unique. Multifamily property sellers can afford to be more patient than owner-occupied sellers because the
income from property
continues to be produced even while the property is listed for sale.
- He/she will tend to have access to "hidden" listings, as his/her selling clients are also likely to be multifamily rental property investors.
- The agent's experience handling tenants will come in handy. For example, if your showing was not communicated to the tenant and he/or she is not expecting you (very common), an agent skilled in appeasing the tenant and getting you in the door right then and there will save you time & money in the long run.
- He/she will be able to provide a ton of knowledge regarding the best streets within your target area, tips to deal with tenants, multifamily structural idiosyncrasies to keep in mind, and other valuable info.
HOW TO FIND A REAL ESTATE AGENT
Finding a real estate agent isn't hard. Here are the steps:
- Go to
www.realtor.com and do a search for multifamily rentals within your target area.
- Call the office that has the most listings and say that you saw listing "X" on realtor.com and you would like to take a look.
- You will then be transferred to the listing agent, who often will be the multifamily guru within that particular office.
- Tell the listing agent that you are interested in buying rental properties, and ask if you can be their client. I'd be shocked if the answer is anything but 'yes.'
If you eventually find that you do not like working with this particular rental property agent, simply repeat the realtor.com exercise and call another office that appears to have a lot of listings in your target area. It's typically no problem to simply try the next guy if needed.
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