Michele Buckman has put together some videos discussing the current DC market and what the future may hold for the real estate market in the Washington DC area.
Many real estate agents will inundated you with a variety of designations. Do not allow yourself to be intimidated nor should be sold on the fact that they possess a vast array of certifications. Such designations as GRI (Graduate Realtor Institute), ABR (Accredited Buyer Representative) or CRS (Certified Residential Specialist) represent education certifications. Keep in mind, education is great but nothing beats field experience. Choose a real estate agent who possesses the ability to solve problems and is sensitive to customer service and customer needs. Your agent should answer your call and emails in a timely fashion. Make sure the agent has extensive knowledge of the area you are choosing to buy/sell in.
If you are a first time real estate buyer, choose an agent who is willing to take the time and walk you through the process explaining each step along the way. An experienced agent will have a network of people they work with including Washington D.C. lenders, Washington D.C title companies, Washington D.C. home inspectors, etc. An extensive network will make the buying/selling process smooth and efficient.
Finally, it is important point out that you will be spending a significant amount of time with your real estate agent. An extensive resume and field experience should not be your only criteria. Ask yourself, "Will I be comfortable spending large portions of a day with this individual?" Stick to these guidelines and your buying/selling experience in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area will be an enjoyable one.