A servant's heart, trust, experience, and negotiating skills. Those are the things that matter when choosing a realtor to assist with the most important transactions in your life.
It is crucial that a realtor have the client's best interest before their own. This is something that all agents say, but not all do. This is why the first two attributes are so important.
The last two are important because both are needed in order to get the best possible result for you. Is there a magic amount of experience that is enough? Having handled 1,200 real estate transactions in my career, I can tell you that there isn't a specific number, and that it really doesn't take hundreds and hundreds of transactions to develop enough experience to be effective for a client, but having dealt with almost that same number of agents on the other side of the table, I have seen firsthand that experience definitely matters. It makes a very real difference and puts a client at a significant and often measurable advantage.
I started my own brokerage 9 years ago for a number of reasons, one of which was that I was uncomfortable with the growing trend of financial affiliations with lenders and title companies. Don't get me wrong, affiliations can be handled correctly, and agents can do a good job for their clients despite them, but having a financial agreement with these other service partners creates an incentive to serve one's self rather than the client. We simply don't do them. If I recommend a title company or a lender, it will be because I truly believe their services would be a good option for the client to consider, not because I have a financial incentive to do so.
If you are looking for an experienced realtor in the Northern Virginia area that you know you can trust, give me a call directly or shoot me an email. I'd be happy to talk to you about working together to make your real estate plans successful.