Choosing a Real Estate Agent Based on Experience

Death to the Stock Photo

Death to the Stock Photo

There are so many factors to consider when you're choosing a real estate to work with to buy or sell your home, including how long they have been in the business. At one of my open houses this past weekend, a few people were chatting about their agents' level of experience and it got me thinking that there really are benefits to working with newer agents and those more established, although I think they have different things to offer.

One of the biggest benefits to working with a newer real estate agent is that they are hungry — they are excited to work for you. Chances are they also have a smaller number of transactions going on at any one time, which means they have more time to focus on each of their clients. Newer agents tend to be younger, super savvy with technology, social media, and modern marketing channels. If they're committed to being in real estate, they'll most likely be there for you when you're ready to make your next move. 

On the other hand, experienced agents who have been working in the field have something that takes years to build: their network. It's something you can't learn at a conference or buy online. Building a network of fellow realtors, mortgage lenders, and home improvement professionals takes both time and experience in building great relationships. And in some transactions, that network could mean the difference between finding out about a house before it comes on the market, negotiating the right price, or seamlessly preparing for a mortgage loan. 

To share a little data with you, here is the breakdown for realtors in California by years of experience. 

Years of Experience as a Realtor

Data from California Association of Realtors, 2013 Member Profile Survey

I've been in the business for nine years now, so I'm smack dab in the middle — still excited about growing my client base and feeling like I have established a great network of professionals to work with. I'll share a little backstory with you:  I started my career in real estate in 2007 during the recession. I was in my 20s and wanted nothing more than to be a successful realtor. For the first three years, I worked at night valet parking cars in San Francisco. Now, nearly a decade later, I'm proud that I'm able to support my family in an area where the cost of living definitely isn't cheap. 

When it comes to buying or selling a house, you'll want to work with a realtor who is going to represent your best interests in the transaction, whether they are newer or more experienced. If you're thinking about buying or selling a home in Redwood City, I would be happy to give you an estimate for your home's value or chat with you about what you're looking for. 


Cliff Whearley has been a resident of Redwood City for 23 years. He is a Realtor at Dwell Realtors, Inc. and has been practicing real estate since 2007. If you have any real estate questions, he would love to help!