How to choose a perfect Real Estate Agent when buying out of state

Posted by Alex Narodny on Tuesday, September 7th, 2021 at 12:00pm

By, Lisa Roberts

Buying out of state has never been easy. You need to either organize exhausting and costly trips or do everything online and hope for the best. The current post-pandemic state of things only complicates things further and makes travel all the more untenable. So, how do you go find a realtor to help you through the process of buying a home out of state? What should you pay attention to? And what can you do to prepare? These are the issues faced by all would-be house buyers. And while there is no perfect solution for everyone, there are things you can do to make the process smoother and more manageable. Thus, we have put together a guide on how to choose the perfect real estate agent when buying out of state to help you do just that!

Set a budget first

Before you do anything, before you even firmly decide that you want to move, try to work out the budget such a move would entail. Budgeting for first-time homeowners can be challenging since you might not be aware of all the costs involved. You need to take into account the cost of the house, any repairs you might have to do, movers, insurance, a real estate agent, and house inspector. Moreover, there will be some more minor expenses such as for the boxes, knickknacks, and other packing materials. Finally, you may potentially have to live in a hotel for a couple of days while your move is ongoing. If you conclude that you cannot finance everything outright, you might want to look into mortgages. Do not go into the process of buying a house, particularly out of state, without doing at least basic research into the cost and budgeting.


A budget will also help you avoid the draw of buying a fixer-upper if you cannot afford it!

Check sites and online reviews

Once you have decided it is time to sell your house and move on and made up your mind that you want to move out of state, the search is on. It is only natural that you would start such a search by reaching for the most widely used tool of our time: the internet. Yelp and similar sites offer a plethora of venues by which to search and potentially check the reviews of previous clients. A preferable option is if the realtor in question has a site of their own, particularly one with a reviews section. This means they look to engage more with potential clients and are likely more open and proactive when it comes to working with someone out of state.

Ask for a referral

Once you have settled on the list of promising real estate agents, it is time to further narrow down your selection. You should contact them and ask for referrals to previous clients who might be willing to share their experiences. Suppose you are moving from Florida to California. In that case, you want to ask for someone who has personally experienced the relocation from the Sunshine State to California while working with the realtor. This way, they would be able to offer more personalized experiences. Of course, do not simply give up even if there are no such previous clients. Try to ask for someone who has also moved out of state like you are planning to. Still, be somewhat wary if the referrals only have positive things to say without any complaints.

Schedule an online interview

Even if you cannot meet your potential realtors in person, you can still organize an online interview! This is crucial since even if everything else has been spotless so far, you want to make sure the real estate agent clicks with you on a personal level. If you cannot get along with them, the process will be long and torturous. An interview is also an excellent chance to see if the real estate agents have padded their portfolios with no substance to them. The primary thing to look out for is social awkwardness. Such a realtor is unlikely to be truly successful at negotiations and similar work, which are critical for the job. In addition, you can check if the realtor has experience with selling and buying at the same time if you are planning to do such a thing yourself.

Given that it's easy to set up an online interview, there is no reason not to do it! 

Never settle immediately

Remember, even if a real estate agent looks perfect for you, their portfolio, reviews, and referrals are excellent, never rush to choose one immediately. Always have several different candidates and only make your choice once you have gone through all three stages. When you need to choose the perfect real estate agent when buying out of state, you also have to consider their prices. If the glowing example of realtor perfection costs you an arm and a leg, then it is likely that he is not the right one for you after all. The perfect realtor for you should have all the skills required, yes. But they should also be someone whose services you can afford.

Carefully check the contract

No matter how honest and forthright your real estate agent has been, you still want to carefully look over the contract. Make sure everything you will require of them has been specified, including organizing virtual tours of properties you are interested in if you can't easily make the trip. Otherwise, the realtor can rightfully refuse to do something you ask of them on the spot. An essential factor to consider is also the length of the contract. It rarely takes more than a month to find the property you want to buy in the current market. You can, of course, make a longer contract. However, anything over two months can easily lead to delays where the real estate agent prioritizes the shorter contracts they are under. In such a situation, you would also not be able to switch to someone else until your contract expires.

A bad contract is a sure sign to stay away from a realtor! 

Final Words

The question of how to choose the perfect real estate agent when buying out of state is a complex one, and we hope that our guide will make the process a bit easier for you. Just remember to properly screen the realtors, check the contract, and budget carefully!

Meta Description:

Join us for our guide on how to choose the perfect real estate agent when buying out of state and learn everything you need to know!

Picture Links:

Leave A Comment

Format example:

What's Your Home Worth? Find out now, for Free.

Let's Go