How to Choose the Right Realtor

Buying or selling a home is one of the single largest financial decisions in your life. Having the right team to help guide you through this momentous occasion is crucial, and building that team starts with hiring the “right” realtor. 

As I mentioned in a previous article, Choosing the Right Lender, your realtor is the leader of your buying/selling team and the person who should be referring you to great lenders, title companies, home inspectors, stagers, handymen, etc. As a result, hiring an experienced realtor can have a huge impact on the overall quality of your transaction.

When interviewing realtors, people often start with their friends and family, which is great, so long as your friends and family are “qualified” to represent you. To best determine if a realtor is “qualified” to manage this important life event, I recommend asking them the following: 

  • How many years of experience do you have?
    • Why is this important? – To earn a real estate license in the state of Virginia, it takes a measly 60 hours of studying and testing (meanwhile it takes a Cosmetologist 1,500 hours to earn a license.) Knowing this, are you confident that a mere 60 hours of training qualifies someone to handle your $700,000 transaction? I wouldn’t be. I recommend hiring someone who has been in the business for at least two years.
  • How many homes do you sell in a year?
    • Why is this important? – Just because a realtor has been in the business for 20 years does not mean they are “qualified.” The average realtor sells 8 homes a year. I recommend hiring someone who consistently sells 24+ homes every year to ensure you will receive the highest level of service and expertise. There are a lot of different scenarios that can arise during a real estate transaction and you want to make sure your realtor can navigate them. 
  • How will you market my home?
    • Why is this important? – When you are hiring a listing agent, you are really hiring a marketing company. Technology has dramatically changed the way that buyers search for properties. Consequently, it’s important to know if your realtor has changed with the times or if they are still marketing homes the same way they did pre-2008.  
  • Do you have any team members that will assist with my home purchase or sale?
    • Why is this important? – You want a realtor who actively works in the market so they know what’s going on. Having team members that can assist with paperwork, scheduling home inspection, appraisals, etc. can be extremely beneficial for a smooth transaction. It makes for easier communication and ensures that everything is being completed in a timely manner. 
  • What’s your chemistry like?
    • Why is this important? – It’s extremely important that you like the realtor that you work with. It’s a team effort and you may be spending a lot of time with them. Also, take a look at their marketing and processes. Is it all about them or is it about getting the job done for their clients. Last but not least, make sure that they care about you more than the commission. Your realtors job is to guide and protect you, not sell you. Make sure they’re looking out for your best interest. 
  • How do you communicate?:
    • Why is this important? – You’ll want someone who you can be honest with and communicates with you clearly. If your interaction with them doesn’t feel natural, it’s probably not a good fit.  

If the realtor you’re considering does not meet one or all of these qualifications, I recommend continuing to search, or at a minimum, guaranteeing they are directly backed and mentored by someone who does meet these guidelines.  

If you have specific questions or would like to set up an in-person meeting to discuss your scenario, please call or email me directly at 703-915-2244 / [email protected]. If you enjoyed this post and would like access to more of my articles/videos, visit the video/blog section of my website at:


Jason Curry

Licensed Realtor: VA & DC

J Curry Group at KW Metro Center

2101 Wilson Blvd #100

Arlington, VA 22201


Check out this article next

Lyon Hall - Clarendon, Virginia

Lyon Hall - Clarendon, Virginia

This Friday has us dreaming about returning to our favorite restaurants. One of those Arlington Greats is Lyon Hall. Overseen by Executive Chef Matt Hill, this…

Read Article
About the Author

Jason Curry, founding owner of the J Curry Group, based in Arlington, VA, has a long record of successfully guiding his clients through the home buying and selling process. He epitomizes integrity, energy, hard work, and creative service in every detail of your residential real estate transaction and he has represented sellers, buyers, and investors. Jason is annually a top producer in the area and is respected among clients and colleagues. Jason specializes in applying his expertise and market knowledge to residential properties that consistently exceed the personal and investment goals of his clients. He recognizes the importance of customer service in the real estate industry, and has developed systems and processes to ensure pleased and profitable clients. Grateful for an amazing group of neighborhood friends and contacts, Jason makes sure that new residents are welcomed in a way that has become customary in the Northern Virginia area. Jason is a lifelong resident of the DMV and is a proud alum of George Mason University where he earned his Bachelors degree.