If the time has come for you to select a real estate agent, you probably have been asking for recommendations from people you trust, and doing a little research to find just the right person to help you. After all, you want someone you feel comfortable with, trust, and who will not only get the job done but will be a partner looking out for your best interests. Maybe you have the right person selected, but would like to know a bit more. Like what do all those abbreviations after his or her name mean?
Well, like a doctor or nurse has certain degrees and certifications, REALTORS® also go through some rigorous training that earns designations. Why are these important? Because change is constant in the world of real estate, and a continuous education will impact what a real estate agent can bring to the table. Prudential Verani agents in particular live by the philosophy, “when you stop learning, you stop earning.”
So what are you looking for?
Whether you are a buyer or seller, you should be looking for someone with a wealth of knowledge to bring to the sales transaction on your behalf. You can distinguish one agent’s specialty from the next by looking at their designations. Designations are the acronyms that follow your potential agent’s name (for example: REALTOR® Bob Smith, ABR, CSP, SFR).
The knowledge gained from each designation expands the intellectual ability of agents, and helps them be more educated professionals. Each designation has an emphasis on a niche or particular specialization in the real estate business related to a type of sale, marketing practices, or education in how to best assist buyers during a transaction.
For example, for a potential buyer, the Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation is designed for real estate buyer agents who focus on working directly with buyers. The course of study equips the agents with elevated skills and knowledge to better serve the interest of a home buyer. The agent also receives specialized information, programs, and updates, all of which help them stay on top of the issues, programs, and trends in the current buyers’ market.
Another designation you will find is CSP (Certified New Home Sales Professional) which is just one of several important certifications for any agent. The CSP designation was created for specialists in new home sales. It covers an A-Z approach from the construction process, vendor/subcontractor relationships, new home trends, and construction standards through the sales and marketing process. In other words, it provides a comprehensive knowledge in what can be a confusing and overwhelming process for new home buyers.
If you are looking to for someone with knowledge in short sales, the designation SFR stands for Short Sales & Foreclosures Resource and provides real estate professionals knowledge to help sellers maneuver the complexities of short sales as well as help buyers pursue short sale and foreclosure opportunities.
With so many baby boomers getting ready to downsize, the SRES® designation, Seniors Real Estate Specialist, provides knowledge, understanding, and expertise for 55+ real estate clients and customers.
You may encounter many other designations as the list of potential certifications and specialized training is vast, from relocation and fine homes to E-certification (service the emerging market needs of the online consumer) to even certification in equestrian property (experience and dedication in the field of equine real estate).
As a potential buyer or seller, you want to do business with an agent whom you trust, who has continued to expand their knowledge and skills and who has the personality that best fits your needs. Once you have found your potential agent, take the time to find out what designations your potential real estate agent has earned. Look up what the letters following their name mean by visiting the National Association of REALTORS® Designations & Certifications page. Take a close look at Prudential Verani’s real estate agents to see how we can best help you obtain your real estate goals.