ANNOUNCING: San Diego’s 2010 FIVE STAR Real Estate Agents
We surveyed recent homebuyers and other industry experts to find the best real estate agents in the San Diego area. Here they are.
Experts say that at least 90 percent of homebuyers rely on real estate agents for advice and guidance. But with more than 14,000 San Diego residents holding real estate licenses, how do you find someone who knows the market, represents your interests and operates with an emphasis on integrity and service?
San Diego Magazine can help. For the third year, the magazine partnered with Crescendo Business Services, an independent research firm, to find out which real estate agents have most consistently wowed their clients.
The Selection Process
This past August, Crescendo surveyed by mail and phone 21,800 San Diego area residents who had recently purchased homes, and 9,000 subscribers of San Diego Magazine. An additional 250 surveys were sent to mortgage and title companies, who are often best able to judge a real estate agent’s technical skills and knowledge.
On the surveys, recipients were asked to nominate only real estate agents whom they knew through personal experience. They were asked to evaluate them based upon nine criteria: customer service, communication, finding the right home, integrity, negotiation, marketing the home, market knowledge, closing preparation and overall satisfaction.
Only original surveys—no copies—returned in their specially designed envelopes were accepted as valid. By September, stacks of surveys had arrived, and Crescendo began carefully scoring and screening each nominee with the California State Real Estate Commission’s database to make certain that licenses were up-to-date and that no disciplinary actions were pending.
Then, before finalizing the list, nominated real estate agents were reviewed by a blue-ribbon panel of local industry experts. The panel consisted of realty company executives, professional and trade association officers and others directly involved in housing-related businesses.
Although panelists’ comments were incorporated into the final score, safeguards were built into the review process to reduce the ability of panel members to influence the composition of the final list on the basis of company affiliation.
Best in Client Satisfaction
The resulting list of FIVE STAR Real Estate Agents is an elite group, representing less than 5 percent of licensed agents in the San Diego area. Only 639 of the top-scoring real estate agents made this year’s list. To make the list more user-friendly, agents have been grouped based on their city of focus.
Throughout the nomination process, respondents told stories of lasting friendships that have emerged from what is most often a stressful business transaction. Several even wrote essays on why their particular agent excelled.
Although this list will certainly be a useful tool for anyone buying or selling a home, it should not be considered exhaustive. Undoubtedly, there are many other excellent real estate agents who, for one reason or another, are not on this year’s list. But don’t be surprised to see them next year.
As with any research or recognition program, it is important that we provide you the following declarations:
• The 2010 FIVE STAR Real Estate Agents do not pay a fee to be included in the research or the final list of FIVE STAR: Best in Client Satisfaction Real Estate Agents.
• The overall evaluation score of a real estate agent reflects an average of all respondents and may not be representative of any one client’s evaluation.
• The FIVE STAR Award is not indicative of the real estate agent’s future performance.
• The inclusion of a real estate agent on the FIVE STAR real estate agent list should not be construed as an endorsement of the real estate agent by Crescendo Business Services or San Diego Magazine.
• Working with a FIVE STAR Real Estate Agent or any real estate agent is no guarantee that the selected real estate agent will be awarded this accomplishment by Crescendo in the future.
• For more information on the FIVE STAR Award and the research/selection methodology, go to: fivestarprofessional.com/reresearch.