The Better Business Bureau (BBB), a nonprofit consumer organization, keeps complaints about agents on file, and typically, the top complaint involves sellers who expected their agents to show the house more than they did.
Most states have licensing provisions for real estate agents, and the BBB provides one more resource for doing your homework before signing a contract. Just navigate through the Web site, and you can see the bureau's rating as well as the details on any complaints filed against the business.
"If we've got complaints, you'll be able to see that report online," says Sheryl Bilbrey, chief executive of the Better Business Bureau office of San Diego and Imperial Counties in Southern California. "The Better Business Bureau is all about asking the question up front before you make a hire."