Buyer Questions to Ask Any Agent

There are a multitude real estate professionals along Florida’s Emerald Coast. You probably already know a Florida Realtor or picked up a few cards while vacationing in the Destin area. One important factor when purchasing real estate in Northwest Florida is choosing the right agent for your needs.

There are many things to take into consideration when choosing your agent. Most people will agree that experience in the local market is key. Other areas to evaluate include how often does the agent work with buyers (vs. sellers), does the agent have support from a team or broker, does the agent work full-time and how knowledgeable is the agent about the specific areas and properties you are interested in.

You can ask neighbors, friends, and family for referrals or find a variety of agents online. Referrals from someone you know are very helpful and can give you insight about the agent’s personality and dependability.

You will most likely spend a lot of time touring properties with your agent and exchanging emails and phone calls. Personality plays an important role in how comfortable you feel with your agent. Do you prefer someone who is easy going or aggressive? Do you tend to communicate better with a certain age range or gender? Before choosing an agent, spend a little time thinking about what type of personality you feel is best suited for your situation.

A good buyer’s agent should possess most of these qualities:
– Patient and compassionate
– Good listener
– Problem solver who is dedicated to figuring out what you want
– Polite and professional
– Loves showing homes
– Understands how homes are constructed and how to make improvements that increase value
– Organized and detail oriented
– Possesses excellent follow up skills
– Able to develop insight for the rock-bottom price a seller may accept

Below are several questions to ask yourself and potential agents before choosing an agent to assist you in the purchase of your Emerald Coast property. The Nathan Abbott Team strives to build lasting relationships with our clients and want you to be comfortable and informed from the very beginning. Feel free to contact us to discuss why our Buyer Specialist are able to serve as your trusted real estate advisors along Florida’s Gulf Coast.

If you would like to go over any of the questions below, have additional questions or simply want to discuss the local real estate market from Okaloosa Island to Panama City Beach, contact us today.

Questions to Ask a Buyer’s Agent

What percentage of your clients are buyers (vs. sellers)?
Many agents work with both buyers and sellers. Some agents (like our Buyer Specialists) work mainly with buyers and are able to better tend to a buyer’s needs.

Do you work full-time or part-time as a real estate agent?
If an agent has a second job or only works in real estate part-time, it may be a little harder to reach them when needed.

How many years of education and experience do you have? 
Experience and continuing education typically make for better agents. But that doesn’t mean that freshly licensed agents aren’t valuable. Many new agents have access to mentors and fresh training. Newer agents tend to have more time to concentrate on you. But you have to be aware they may be learning a few things as your transaction progresses. Experienced agents are more likely to do less ‘hand-holding’, may be more direct with you in regards to your real estate desires, but also tend to have a lot of network connections that will greatly benefit you.

In which neighborhoods/cities do you primarily work?
If you have an idea of where you want to purchase property, finding an agent with knowledge and purchasing or selling experience in those areas/neighborhoods is a wonderful advantage to you. Usually, they have already established connections with other agents and homeowners in the area and are able to find you the property you are looking for more efficiently. Agents who have insight into the local school systems, utilities, local contractors and inspectors are very helpful.

Can you provide me with the names and phone numbers of past clients who have agreed to be references? 
Insights from past customers can help you learn more about an agent and give you a greater comfort level. You can sometimes find reviews on the agent’s website or LinkedIn profile.

What is your strategy for meeting my needs?
As a buyer, you will need to know how the agent will search for properties. All agents have access to online software to perform detailed property searches. Some agents also attend local real estate tours and open houses to be more aware of available properties in the area. Your agent should be able to set you up with email alerts about specific neighborhoods or areas with properties that match your search parameters. Knowing how your agent searches for properties and how they plan to share those properties with you will help you decide which agent’s communication style you prefer.

What is your average list-price-to-sales-rice ratio?
Excluding hot seller’s market, a good buyer’s agent should be able to negotiate a sales price that is lower than list price. Buyer’s agent ratios should fall below 99% of ask price. Sometimes properties are listed above market value and can skew the ratios. While these ratios are not extremely important, it is nice to know if your buyer’s agent has a track record of efficiently negotiating lower prices with listing agents

Will I be working with you directly or handed off to anyone else?
In other words, will you handle all aspects of my transaction or will you delegate some tasks to a sales associate or administrative assistant? A knowledgeable assistant can be invaluable, but you want to make sure you can connect with your agent regularly. Our Buyer Specialists work with you through the entire process. We have a closing department that handles all the details of your property’s closing. However, your real estate agent is always up-to-date and accessible to you during your real estate purchase.

What are the top three things that separate you from your competition?
While this question can easily be answered with a variety of standard lines, a good agent won’t hesitate to answer. Everyone has their own checklist, but most clients are looking for agents who say they are honest, trustworthy, assertive, excellent negotiators, readily available by phone or e-mail, good communicators, friendly, and able to maintain a good sense of humor under trying circumstances.

What else do I need to know?
Pay close attention to how the real estate agent answers this question because there is always something you need to know, always. You want an agent to take her time with you – to make sure you feel comfortable and secure with her knowledge and experience. They should know how to listen and how to counsel you, how to ask the right questions to find out what they need to know create the best real estate experience for you.

If you are interested in purchasing or selling property along Florida’s Emerald Coast, The Nathan Abbott Team is here to guide you and be your trusted real estate advisor.

Search all properties for sale along the Emerald Coast.

Nathan Abbott
ResortQuest Real Estate | Broker Associate, Realtor®
Nathan Abbott Team | CEO

3D Property Tours Sell Property

Property Marketing Techniques that Sell Your Property: #1 – 3D Property Tours

3D Property Tours Help Properties Sell

3D property tours are an amazing marketing technique that highlight a property for sale in the best light. Many sellers market their property through still shot photography and 2D imaging. While a picture tells a thousand words, and a professional photo shoot of a property for sale increase the number of buyers who schedule property visits, 3D imaging reaches a much wider audience. The Nathan Abbott Team is incorporating 3D property tours into their property marketing for sellers. This is a great way a seller can highlight their property for sale and capture an active audience.

Still shot property photography typically captures an audience for about 20 to 30 seconds. 3D imaging and 3D property tours captures an audience for 4 to 6 minutes.

3D imaging means sellers can offer buyers an open house 24/7. The Nathan Abbott Team sells properties along Florida’s Emerald Coast and market to a lot of out-of-state buyers. A 3D tour allows out-of-state buyers to walk through a property for sale as if there were actually there.

Buyers love 3D tours because they can visit multiple properties without having to be there in person. 3D property tours allow buyers to fully experience a property from their own home. They can navigate through the property by clicking on a floorplan, choosing images from a gallery or using their mouse to move from room to room. 3D tours can also extend to the exterior of the home, allowing buyers to walk on the patio and deck and see the amazing beach or nature views.

A 3D experience is an amazing way to showcase a property for sale, capture a buyer and get a property sold. If you are interested in learning more about 3D property tours, contact the Nathan Abbott Team.

nathan-abbott-realtorNathan Abbott
ResortQuest Real Estate | Broker Associate, Realtor®
Nathan Abbott Team | CEO

Nathan Abbott Real Estate Agent

Behind the Real Estate Curtain – A Message to Buyers, Sellers and Agents

Nathan Abbott shares the realities of being a real estate agent along Florida’s Emerald Coast.

Hi! I am Nathan Abbott, a real estate agent with the Nathan Abbott Team at ResortQuest Real Estate in Northwest Florida.  I wanted to share with you the true realities of being a real estate agent and what real estate is all about.

Interested in being a Real Estate Agent?

For those of you looking to get into real estate as a career it can be phenomenal job. There’s always a glass ceiling you can break and you can create a great life from real estate sales.

But, you can also get slapped in the face too. Sometimes you may wonder how you’re going to pay your next bill. Real estate is not for the faint at heart. Its extremely hard work. You’ve got to get good at time management. You’ve got to wake up and give yourself personal motivation. It’s really hard to pick yourself up if you’re beaten down all the time. Deals fall apart and a property sale you thought would close sometimes doesn’t.

You have to pick yourself up every morning and say, “You know what, its a new day. I’m going to start over again.” So, for those of you trying to get into real estate, its a great job – but you’ve got to be aware of what you’re getting into. We have agents on our team who have had some very tough times, and to see them pull themselves out of that through this business and create a better life for themselves is an amazing thing to watch. But, you’ve got to be in it full force.

I recommend having about 6 months of reserves to support yourself when you begin your career as a real estate agent with no income. Because, that’s a big reality that may occur and does for many real estate agents.

It takes a lot of time to get comfortable in the market. It usually takes 2-3 years before you start getting in your comfort zone. And, I always try to be a sponge to learn new things. The minute I personally feel that you think you know it all or that you’re doing it perfectly is when you fail -and you fail quickly. To be in a position where I can try to raise up the people on our team to have a better environment for themselves, then it is a testament.

What Makes Real Estate A Valuable Career?

I love changing lives through real estate for the better. That’s really where my passion is. I love relationships. I love connecting with people. I love getting to know the families.

To be able to do that as a real estate agent make real estate a career that I know is meant for me. To be able to help a first time home buyer make that home a reality for them or to meet someone who has saved their whole life to have a second home and you find this perfect condo or beach property where you know they are going to have wonderful memories with their family – that’s what really hits home for me.

I also like solving problems. If there’s a difficult real estate situation, trying to figure out the right solution for all parties involved and to see success through that is  also something I’m really passionate about. Our team lives by a vision to truly raise a higher standard of expectation.

Had a Bad Real Estate Experience or Real Estate Agent?

Let’s be real. The real estate brand is looked poorly upon. A lot of people think Realtors are cut-throat, pushy sales people. That’s what I try to not be.

No one likes to be sold. People like to be connected with. They like to have a relationship. They want to know they are not just another commission. That’s where the true passion and the positive energy comes from for me.

There are a lot of part time real estate agents out there. Unfortunately, a lot of their customers had a very poor experience. It didn’t work out very well for them if the agent was just trying to sell them over and were not sincere and just weren’t real. We really try to keep it real at the Nathan Abbott Team. It makes it hard on the agents who are truly trying to make an impact on this industry to re-correct those bad real estate experiences. It all comes to the relationship. We need to be able to break through those barriers to connect with customers on a personal level and to create a friendship and that keeps on surviving the times.

As a real estate agent, that’s where your business really starts to grow. Even then you can have tough times. We’ve put a lot of energy into our business. But, there are factors at times that you have no control of like the way the market is shifting, a hurricane or natural disaster. The bills don’t stop. And, if you don’t sell property, you may not be able to support your own family.

For anyone interested in purchasing or selling real estate, we want to change any previous bad experiences you’ve had and help you have a positive experience with our team.

Your loyalty to us as real estate agents means everything to us. Sometimes, customers do not realize how much work is put into real estate transactions -everything from initial research to the expenses involved in a listing and the time devoted. It can feel like a dagger in the heart when we put time in and a customer calls another agent at the final hour and closes a deal with them. Keep in mind, if we as real estate agents do not sell property, we may not be able to support our own families.

Through the experience we give you, we want to create an awesome environment, and we cherish when customers are loyal to us as well. And that’s what makes the perfect connection between the real estate agent and their customers. Because, believe me, if an agent knows you’re loyal to them, they are going to be so sincere to you, they’re going to go the extra mile, they’re going to do things for you because they are passionate about your relationship. That’s so much more than just a commission.

Changing the Perception of Today’s Real Estate Agents

I hope shared some valuable information for buyers, sellers and agents. For those of you looking to become a real estate agent, I hope you come on board and give it a shot. But I do want you to be aware of  what you’re getting yourself into.

For those customers that think that there are always Realtors at their disposal, that may be true. But, there is a huge difference between real estate agents who will give back to you the right knowledge and details to create success for you versus agents who will fall short every time. There are about 3,600 agents in our area and only the top 1,000-1,500 are really building their business and creating positive environments for their customers.

We hope we have the opportunity to build a relationship and work with you to help you achieve your real estate goals. The Nathan Abbott Team is always here as your trusted real estate advisors for Florida’s Emerald Coast.

nathan-abbott-realtorNathan Abbott
ResortQuest Real Estate
CEO | Nathan Abbott Team
O: 850.632.0102
C: 850.803.7653

How the Tax Cut and Jobs Act May Affect Your Property Sale

Tax plan outlines five changes for individuals – one that could affect the sale of your property!

The house passed the Tax Cut and Jobs Act (TCJA) on November 9th, 2017. If the senate also passes the TCJA, it may go into effect as early as next January.

The TCJA will change several areas of tax law. One important change that may affect your local real estate property is a change to capital gains in real estate sales. Current law allows you to sell and pay no taxable gain if you have lived in your principal residence for two of the last five years. The gains are currently capped at $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for couples.

The Tax Cut and Jobs Act proposes to change the length of time to five out of the last eight years that a property has to be your primary residence. 

That means if you were planning to sell a property and make significant gains but have lived in the property for less than five years – you need to act now!

Today there are only 42 days until January 1, 2018. That may mean you have only 42 days to sell your property!

Contact Nathan Abbott today to discuss this proposed tax change, how it affects your property and to receive a detailed market analysis for your local property – 850-803-7653

For more detailed information about the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, browse the links below:

Congress website  |  Wikipedia  |  USA Today

Search All Properties Along the Emerald Coast

nathan-abbott-realtor Nathan Abbott
ResortQuest Real Estate
CEO | Nathan Abbott Team
O: 850.460.2900
C: 850.803.7653

2016 Realtor Expo Nathan Abbott

2016 Realtor Expo in Sandestin, Florida

Nathan Abbott was honored to be one of the speakers at the 2016 Realtor Expo at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. On Friday, July 15, 2016, hundreds of local Realtors and business partners gathered to share experiences and absorb tons of real estate related knowledge from presenters. Nathan Abbott had a packed house and rave reviews for his lecture on “Raising a Higher Standard of Expectations.”

Realtor and ECAR board member, Justin Lindsey said “It’s awesome getting pro tips from Nathan Abbott about how to be a rock star Realtor. This event is absolutely fantastic!”

Fellow presenter and Realtor at Beachy Beach Real Estate commented on Facebook, “Nathan it was nice to speak with you today. I really am so grateful and so humbled to be standing on a platform with you. I have such respect for the way you run your business. You are a fine example of what this profession is about. When one of us is honorable it adds honor to all of us. Thanks for being a Great Realtor and human.”

Nathan Abbott Team business partner and mortgage lender, Sue Bothelo said “At the Realtor Expo with lots of great information being given by peers. If you’re not here, you’re missing a great event!”

The 2016 Realtor Expo featured a dozen local experienced and successful real estate industry leaders including:
  • Michele Bailey, Resort Quest — “25 things I wish I knew in my first year”
  • Janna Mae, Risa’s Interiors — “Staging Styles for Success”
  • David Connart, Next Home White Sands — “HUD properties and REOs — it’s not over yet”
  • David Collins, educator — “Agency Relationship — Share the Pie”
  • John Wilson, Columbus Capital — “Creative Financing”
  • Nathan Abbott, Resort Quest — “Team Building that is generational”
  • Karen Smith, Beachy Beach — “Your attitude affects your altitude”
  • Justin Lindsey, ECAR board member — “Blogging for Dollars”
  • Pastor Steve Vaggalis, Destiny Worship Center — “Faith, Vision and Integrity

This 2016 Realtor Expo in Sandestin was hosted by World Impact Real Estate in partnership with the Emerald Coast Association of Realtors. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from this event benefited Soldiers on the Water, an event designed for Realtors and local businesses to give back to our local military and combat wounded veterans. This event will take place on Sept. 17.

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