Whether you need to buy a property or sell one, one person who can prove to be of much help to you is a real estate agent. Important as a good real agent is, finding one can often prove challenging. To help you in this regard, here are 7 things you must be aware about them when looking for a real estate agent. • Your friends and family members can be your best guide to a good real estate agent. There are many sources through which you can locate an effective real estate agent, but the best of all is perhaps your friends and family members. They are likely to give advice from experience, which can prove priceless. • Experience matters, but don’t discount recent performance. If everything else, like fees, services offered, average time taken for buying or selling a property is identical, most people are likely to go with a real estate with more experience, isn’t so? Well…the choice in fact is a practical one. However, the number of years an agent has been on the market should not matter as much as his or her recent performance. Therefore, in addition to asking about agents’ total experience study their last 12 months performance because it will give you a fair idea about how effective they are in the current market scenario. • A low fee may mean hidden charges. Many agents lure customers by listing a low fee for their service but add charge hefty additional charges to the final bill. That is why it is best you ask for a written quote from all agents you shortlist. • You can ask for a tailor made service contract. Most agents do not decline a request for a customized solution. So don’t hesitate in asking for a customized solution if you find a real estate agent who looks good on other parameters. • Nearly all agents have some satisfied customers but it is the really good ones that satisfy nearly all their customers. Most people ask an agent to provide a few references and usually take a decision on the basis of the quality of these references. However, every agent who has been in the business for some time is bound to have a few customers who were blown away by his or her service. Instead of considering the best references of an agent, you should ask for his or her last 5 or 7 references as this will tell you more accurately about the quality of service you are likely to receive. • Give preference to agents that are part of reputable organizations like National Association of Realtors. This organization, like many other state-level or national-level organizations of real estate agents, requires its members to follow certain standards. In short, affiliation to such an organization almost guarantees you good service. • Select an agent who is a member of the Multiple Listing Service (MLS for short). This service provides agents access to houses represented by other agencies. A good estate agent is often the difference between a good and bad deal. With these tips, you will be easily able to locate an agent who works for you and helps you to buy a house or land in the town. Author Bio: Derek Langley is a freelance writer interested in writing articles related to real estate. Most often he writes articles about services of real estate agents.