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Questions to Ask When Selecting a Buyer’s Rep

This content was originally published on September 12, 2016, and updated on August 29, 2022.

If you’re interested in buying a home, it’s easy to spend hours scrolling through photos on property listing sites and imagine living in the various homes for sale. But savvy buyers know that one of the first essential steps is selecting a real estate professional to serve as your buyer’s agent.

How do you choose one? A personal conversation is one of the best ways to decide whether an agent has the knowledge and skills to meet your needs—and matches your personality well.

After all, buying a home is a very unique, significant, and potentially challenging experience. You want the best person working on your team!

These questions include many of the essential topics you’ll want to discuss:

Experience and Credentials

How long have you been a buyer’s agent? Are you an Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®)? What other real estate designations or certifications do you hold?


Could I talk to a few past buyer-clients who can tell me more about their experiences working with you?


What aspects of the real estate business do you know best? For example, do you specialize in certain types of properties or neighborhoods?


Can you guide me on mortgage options and choosing a lender? Do I have to be pre-approved for a mortgage before we start seeing homes?


I’ve heard there are differences between being a customer and a client. Can you please explain my options and what representation and fiduciary duties mean? Do you practice dual agency?

Services Provided

How will you assist me at each stage of the transaction? Do you have a written buyer representation agreement that details our obligations to each other?


How will you be compensated as my buyer’s agent?

Finding Properties

Do you have full access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in the areas we’re considering? How will you update me on new listings? Will we view properties that aren’t in the MLS, such as for sale by owner (FSBO) homes?


How are you approaching negotiations with sellers in today’s market? Do you take any special steps to help strengthen my offer?


What is your advice about property inspections, and are you recommending (for or against) any other contingencies?

Transaction Support

Will you handle all aspects of my transaction, or will I be working with assistants? Who will talk me through the various forms, agreements, and steps required to reach closing?

You may not get through all these questions the first time you talk to a buyer’s rep, and there are probably other things you’d like to know. So don’t hesitate to ask! After all, your buyer’s rep will be a partner in your journey to homeownership, and you want to feel confident they will address your concerns and help you achieve your dreams.