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How to Pick an Agent and Home Out of State

In Buyers by Doug Phelps

During the pandemic, it has not been uncommon for people to move cities, states and even countries in hopes of finding a better neighborhood or more bang for your buck.  While some people may opt to rent a home or apartment in their new location before buying, other people may opt to buy a new home right away.  Many home buyers have started to look for homes in their new location before they have moved from their old one and because of that there is a need to find a local agent.  Local agents who live and work in the community where the house hunt is starting have a much better feel of the market and availability that will greatly benefit out-of-state buyers.  With that, it’s not always convenient to visit each and every house in person or even meet an agent in person before starting the house hunt.  With this practice becoming more common in this digital world, how can you pick an agent, or a home while you’re still out of state?

1. Referrals

If you’re an out-of-state buyer, or recently new to Colorado we welcome you! Denver ranks in the top 10 cities that people flocked to during the pandemic.  As the city continues to grow, with so many people moving to Denver it may be a good possibility that someone in your network knows a great agent in Denver.  Even in a vastly digital world, real estate still continues to be very relationship based so if an agent did well for your friend or co-worker then they likely will be happy to refer you.  Also in your network, you may also have an agent who knows other agents in various locations and an agent-to-agent referral is a great option too. 

2. Online Research

You can look at various real estate sites like Realtor.com, real estate apps or online directories for available real estate agents in the new state you’re looking to move to.  These platforms will have filters so you can choose specific agent specialties or attributes.  When buying out of state, it’s important to do your research and a reputable website or app that specializes in connecting buyers and agents is a great option.  Many agents will be comfortable working with out-of-state clients and will even be willing to show you homes virtually.  A lot of these platforms will also have reviews of agents as well so you can see testimonials and ratings from past clients. In Colorado, a good site for research is www.recolorado.com/

3. Google Searches

The internet may seem like a vast open space of endless options when it comes to find a real estate agent but if you focus in on what you’re really looking for you may find that your specific preferences narrow down your options and help you pick the best agent. For example, if you are looking at homes in a specific zip code then you may want to find an agent who lives near the community.  If you’re looking for homes on a golf course, in a specific gated community or homes with unique attributes there are agents who specialize in these asks and a quick Google search will uncover these potential matches for you.  Once you have a few names in mind, you might also continue to narrow it down by agent experience, personality and availability.  Be sure to reach out via email, text message or call to agents you may like to work with and let them know you’re buying out-of-state so they can help to accommodate you. 

4. Virtual Open Houses

While a virtual open house is not the same as meeting someone in person or face to face, it is still a great way to meet an agent.  Many buyers have connected with, and developed long-lasting relationships with agents they have met at open houses.  If you are scrolling through home listings in your potential new state, then look for any available virtual open houses and don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to the agent.  Even if that specific home is not your cup of tea, it’s very possible that the listing agent will be able to refer you to other agents or show you other homes they have. 

5. Virtual Showings

Many agents, myself included, anticipate doing more FaceTime showings this year.  In the last couple years, I have done many FaceTime showings for clients who are currently living out of state, quarantining, traveling or simply more comfortable with virtual showings as opposed to in-person.  It’s a simple way that the real estate industry and agents can adapt to this current world we live in.  If you prefer virtual showings, make sure you find an agent who can accommodate you in this need!

Do you have any lingering questions about working with an agent out of state?  Are you in the market to buy or sell your home?  Call and text me at (720) 323-4176 or email me at DougMovesYou@Gmail.com