What to Look for in an Investor Real Estate Agent
August 12, 2022
Real estate agents come in all shapes and specialties. Some have a preference for relocation clients, others prefer to work only in one or two specific neighborhoods.
But what if you’re looking to find a real estate agent for investors? Being able to tell you the after-repair value of a property or project the cap rate for the rental downtown takes a specialist’s eye.
An investor real estate agent has the knowledge of rehabbing and rental markets needed to ensure the investment property you’re eyeing makes good “cents.”
Our team of Snohomish real estate professionals at Gilpin Realty has extensive experience in the rental, rehab, and investment property market. We can help guide you through your investment property journey, whether it’s your first flip or your latest project.
What exactly makes a real estate agent ‘investor-friendly’
When shopping around for an “investor-friendly” real estate agent, you’ll want to confirm that they have the needed expertise to guide you through your purchase.
These are some of the skills that we recommend looking for in your real estate agent when searching for the perfect investment property.
The savviest of savvy investment real estate agents always have a pulse on what will be coming on the market soon.
With Zillow, Redfin, and many other homebuying apps opening up the floodgates to data from the MLS, it’s a serious advantage to connect with an agent who is aware of opportunities that have yet to be made public.
Usually, an investor-friendly agent will have a relationship with a wholesaler who seeks to provide homeowners with cash offers. These could be distressed sales or just homeowners trying to move quickly without all of the pomp and circumstance of going on the market.
An agent with knowledge of off-market investment properties provides you with more options in seeking your next investment.
When working in residential real estate, a deal can be fairly straightforward for a generalist real estate agent to negotiate.
An investor-friendly real estate agent will be considering more factors than just purchase price and loan qualifications. They’ll factor in considerations like:
- Renovation costs
- Potential rental income
- Tax projections
They’ll also help you consider other factors that you may not have analyzed, like vacancy allowance, projected maintenance, lawn care, repairs, and other capital expenditures.
By analyzing things from a critical point of view, an investor-friendly agent will help you target the sweet spot necessary to make profit on your investment. Where general real estate agents may not notice a hidden cost, a real estate agent for investors will go into the deal with eyes wide open.
Every sector of real estate has its own unique jargon, but investments come with an even more specialized world of vocabulary.
An agent that knows the ins and outs of real estate investing will be able to easily make sense of the many dimensions of an investment property deal.
Here’s some of the basic terminology to make sure your agent is familiar with:
- Gross rental yield
- Internal rate of return (IRR)
- Net operating income (NOI)
- Cap rate
- Gross rent multiplier (GRM)
While we’re not encouraging you to quiz your real estate agent on vocabulary in a classroom-type environment, you should absolutely vet their understanding of these types of critical concepts.
An agent suited for investments should be able to speak to these concepts with confidence, and you won’t have to question your agent’s competency along the way.
An investor-friendly real estate agent can stand above the rest if they’re an investor themselves.
You can be certain at that point that they’ve been through every dimension of the process and understand both the micro and macro steps that go into it.
As it has been said, experience is the best teacher. Running numbers on an investment property for someone else is not the same as running them for yourself.
It should also be noted that working with a real estate agent who is actively investing may pose some risk of them reserving the best opportunities for themselves. To hedge against this, seek out an agent who has a different property investment strategy than what you desire for yourself.
All in all, working with a real estate agent who is actively investing helps you tap into potential roadblocks and opportunities so you can adjust your investment strategy accordingly.
This list of skills should be a good starting point for you as you look for your ideal investor real estate agent. But here are a few other factors that are important in your choice of agent:
- In real estate full-time and experienced
- Aware of regional opportunities
- An extensive real estate network
- Knowledge of high-ROI home renovations
- Property management knowledge and experience
Being a historic area, there are lots of investment properties in Snohomish waiting to be tapped into. Working with a real estate agent with investment experience puts you ahead of the average flipper swiping through MLS listings on Zillow.
Our office is filled with real estate professionals that have a proven track record in investments. Click here to get in touch with us today.