Real Estate Agents Professional Designations
Real estate agents can earn a number of professional designations from NAR and its affiliates. Three of those designations in particular, are good indication that the agent has at least invested more than the minimum required amount of time and training in the real estate business. Look for the designations ABR (Accredited Buyer’s Representative), GRI (Graduate, Realtor Institute) and CRS (Certified Residential Specialist). Earning them requires course work and evidence that the agent has completed a minimum number of sales transactions.
There’s no magic to the designations but they are a sign of an agent who has taken the time and trouble to get extra training. Give an agent bonus points for designations but pay greater heed to the feedback you get from their references. And always pay greatest heed to your own gut. If you do not like the agent for whatever reason, move along until you find one you do like. Remember, there are a million of them out there. Buying a home is such a complicated and emotional process that personal chemistry with your agent really does matter. If you don’t like the agent at the beginning of the deal, you will come to hate him or her by the end of it. Even when your personalities are compatible, there’s so much stress involved in most home purchases that you can find yourself grinding your teeth at the sound of the agent’s voice. Hitting it off with the agent is not a good reason to work with one, but not hitting it off is a very good reason to pass one by.