Questions To Expect To Be Asked By A Real Estate Agent When Buying A Home

It’s  important to know what questions to expect to be asked by a real estate agent when buying a home so that you’re not caught off guard or offended by the questions.  Below are some of the most common questions to expect to be asked by a real estate agent throughout the home buying process.

Are You Working With A Real Estate Agent?

The first question to expect when coming in contact with a real estate agent should be whether or not you’re working with a real estate agent.  A top real estate agent will generally have a strong reputation with other real estate agents.  A real estate agent who asks a buyer whether they have an agent or not is just being respectful of their peers.  An agent who attempts to steal a buyer who is working with another real estate agent will quickly tarnish their reputation.

Another reason why real estate agents will ask a buyer whether they’re working with a real estate agent or not is because it is not a good idea to work with more than one agent.  In fact, buyers who think working with more than one agent is OK is one thing buyers do that real estate agents hate.

When buying a home it’s important you’re comfortable, believe, and have trust in the real estate agent you’re working with because strong representation is paramount to a successful home buying experience.  Hiring the wrong real estate agent can be the kiss of death when buying a home.

How Did You Hear About Me?

The real estate profession is a very competitive one.  There are endless ways in which a real estate agent can market themselves.  A question to expect when speaking with a real estate agent relates to how you came about contacting them.  The reason a real estate agent will ask how a buyer heard about them is to help them analyze what marketing and advertising efforts are working for them.

Were you referred to them from a family member?  One of their past clients?  Did you find them while searching online?  These are just a few of the most common ways buyers will hear about real estate agents.

Have You Been Pre-Approved For A Mortgage?

There are many reasons why real estate agents ask buyers if they’ve been pre-approved.  It is a question to expect when buying a home, in fact, it will be one of the first questions you will be asked when attempting to view homes.

The number one reason a real estate agent will ask a buyer if they’ve been pre-approved before showing them houses is for their own safety.  Realtor safety has been a very popular topic in the real estate community over the past year with the growing number of tragic events that have been occurring in the industry.

Have You Bought A Home In The Past?

Another question to expect from a real estate agent is whether you’ve purchased a home in the past or not.  If a buyer has never purchased a home and is buying their first home, it’s possible they will need some additional explanations on certain items.

There are certain tips for first time home buyers that may not apply to a buyer who has purchased five homes in the past.  For example, a first time home buyer will often not consider the additional expenses of owning a home such as utilities, refuse, and general maintenance.

Do You Currently Own A Home?

Knowing whether a buyer currently owns a home or not is very important to a real estate agent.  Buying and selling a home at the same time can be very tricky and it’s important for an agent to know which steps to take first.

If a buyer happens to own a home, it is very important for a real estate agent to know whether the buyer has the ability or desire to purchase a home without selling their current home.  This is a question to expect when buying a home because there are so many intricacies to buying and selling a home at the same time and it’s critical the real estate agent knows upfront so they can advise accordingly.

When Do You Want To Purchase A Home?

Timing is very important in real estate.  A common question to expect to be asked by a real estate agent when buying a home is regarding the time frame in which you want to purchase a home.

It’s common for some buyers to not understand the how long (or short) it takes to purchase a home.  Generally speaking, a real estate transaction that involves a buyer obtaining a mortgage will take 60 days from contract date to closing.

A buyer who has a lease for another 6 months and is not willing or able to break their lease is prematurely looking at homes.  If you don’t plan on purchasing a home for 6 months, what is available for sale today will not be available in 6 months, especially if you’re buying a home in a sellers market.

How Do You Prefer To Communicate?

One of the biggest complaints about real estate agents from consumers is the lack of communication from some agents.  An agent who asks by which method you prefer to communicate is likely to be a strong agent.

With the technology that is available, buying a home and the methods of communication are much different than 10 years ago.  Buyers and real estate agents are now communicating, or should be, via text messages, e-mail, Skype, phone conversations, and many other methods.

Where Would You Like To Live?

One of the most important factors to a buyer should be the location or neighborhood they want to live in.  A question to expect from a real estate agent is where you would like to live.

Depending on where a buyer is purchasing a home there maybe only a couple neighborhoods or several.  It’s recommended when buying a home that you know how to select a neighborhood and some tips that can help with the decision.

What Are Your Needs & What Are Your Wants?

During an initial consultation with a real estate agent when buying a home a buyer should expect to be asked about their needs and their wants.  The reason this is such a common question to expect to be asked is because this can help a real estate agent narrow down the number of potential properties for a buyer.

It can be very overwhelming for a buyer to receive a list of 200 potential property matches.  An agent who asks about your needs and your wants is trying to eliminate some of the properties that will absolutely not work for you.

What are some of the common NEEDS that some home buyers have?

  • Number of bedrooms
  • Number of bathrooms
  • Garage space
  • Basement
  • Square footage

What are some of the common WANTS that some home buyers have?

  • Fenced in yard
  • Central air conditioning or ability to install
  • Fireplace
  • Deck/Patio
  • Updated kitchens & baths


One of the best ways to determine your own needs and wants is to ask yourself whether you can live without something or not.  For example, if you have two children and don’t want the children to share a room then you would need at least 3 bedrooms.

Are There Any Things That Are Deal Breakers?

Almost every home buyer will have at least one or two “deal breakers.”  A deal breaker is something that a buyer could not overlook, even if the house was perfect in every other way.  A question to expect to be asked when buying a home is whether there are things that are deal breakers.

Some of the most common deal breakers with buyers include a home being located on a primary road, a home that has no basement, or a home that has only 2 bedrooms.  These are just a few of the most popular deal breakers and certainly vary from buyer to buyer.

What Do You Expect From Your Real Estate Agent?

The most successful real estate agents will make sure they set expectations from the beginning when working with a buyer.  A question that you should expect to be asked is what you expect from your real estate agent when buying a home.

If a real estate agent asks you this question this is your opportunity to make it clear what you expect from them.  Are there certain times you prefer looking at homes?  Do you prefer certain methods of communication?  If you feel that the things you are expecting from your real estate agent cannot be fulfilled, you may want to consider interviewing other real estate agents.

Final Thoughts

If you’re going to be starting the home buying process soon, it’s important to understand the questions to expect to be asked.  Buyers who understand that these questions are asked with the sole purpose of making the home buying process more enjoyable and successful put themselves in a much better position than those who do not.