Did you know that there are over 12,000 licensed Real Estate Agents in Hawai’i? Chances are you know more than just a few people in Hawai’I practicing Real Estate. Sometimes when it comes to deciding who you should hire as your Real Estate Agent it can be overwhelming and can create uncomfortable situations for you and the Agents involved. Keep in mind that just because you have an Agent in your close-knit group of friends or family, you are not bound to use them as your Real Estate Agent. We recommend choosing an Agent that you feel comfortable working with and choosing a professional that you trust will keep your best interests in mind.
However, once you choose a Real Estate Agent – sometimes there are unfortunate situations that may arise that might make you question your decision, or make you want to work with a new Agent. It is okay to switch Real Estate Agents, however there are common courtesies and an appropriate approach to switching Real Estate Agents that will make the situation much less uncomfortable.
- If you have an issue with your Agent, the first step is to communicate the issue. We recommend this step first because it may be possible to resolve the issue by talking it out. Typically, the Real Estate Agent’s Broker may be involved to help mediate the situation.
- Sometimes, even after trying to resolve the issue by talking it out with the Agent and their Broker, you may find that you and your Agent are just not compatible. If this is the case, the next step would be to inform your Agent that you will be seeking different representation.
- Ideally, the Agent will be able to set you up with a different Agent in the same Brokerage so that it will be easy to pass on details of the transaction or home search from the former Agent to the new Agent. For example, if you are selling a home with one Agent that you do not feel suits your needs best, you can speak to the Agent about switching to a different Agent within their Brokerage so that there will not be a need to start an entirely new listing contract with new terms.
- If it doesn’t work out for your current Agent to refer you to another Agent within the same Brokerage, your Agent can still help you connect with an Agent at another Brokerage. This is never ideal, and hurt feelings are usually involved, but it is still a better plan than just burning bridges. The #1 conflict tends to be communication issues, or lack there of. We can’t stress enough to set expectations thoroughly with your Agent on your individual needs. We as Agents work with a multitude of personalities. A few examples of differences we see in Buyers and Sellers below will hopefully make you understand why good communication and setting realistic expectations helps for an ideal experience;
- Some Sellers want to know every detail of a showing, of commentary and feedback, while others only want to know when there is an offer on the table.
- One Seller may feel that every week should be open houses, and another may not be okay with having anyone come through their house.
- One Buyer may want to see homes that have 2 bedrooms even though they have asked their Agent to search for 3 bedrooms. But the Agent would assume not to even mention a 2 bedroom property knowing the Buyer’s preference. And then a Buyer may get the idea that their Agent has decided not to show them everything that comes on the market and feel they are missing out.
- Buyers may not understand that they should not be viewing properties until they have been prequalified if they are getting a Mortgage. Many Agents will connect their Buyer with a few Lender contacts so they can begin the process of becoming approved for a loan, but Buyers most often want to see properties before they have begun that Mortgage process. When a Buyer wants to buy, they want to look NOW, so of course, they now feel their Agent isn’t taking care of them the way they want. However, the Agent is giving courtesy to the Listing and all parties involved on that side. There is a lot of preparation involved in getting a home ready for showings, and showings should be for pre-qualified buyers only. By only showing Listings to qualified Buyers, the Buyer’s Agent is being courteous to all parties involved and this is just a simple conversation that should happen between Agents and Buyers.
The list of common under communicated issues could go on and on. Therefore, the most important thing to remember if you are not feeling good about your Real Estate experience, communicate that to your Agent. Please don’t ghost them and stop answering their calls and have them find out another way. If you and your agent are not compatible, most agents will truly understand and try their best to either make things right, or help you connect with another Agent.