Why You Should Use an MRP For Your Next Move

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Real Estate

Buying or selling your home with a Military Relocation Professional (or MRP) after receiving your PCS orders could mean the difference between a faster and less stressful relocation experience and one in which you consider going AWOL! 

But don't worry! We're here to breakdown the most important aspects of what makes choosing an MRP important to your relocation success and some crucial things to consider before pulling the trigger.

What Does MRP Stand For?


As mentioned earlier, MRP stands for "Military Relocation Professional". This certification program awards real estate agents the designation from the National Association of Realtors® after they complete special training to work with veteran and active-duty military service members.

We'll discuss how real estate agents earn their MRP status in more detail next, and later, why not all MRP real estate agents are created equal. 

How Does a Real Estate Agent Earn the Military Relocation Professional Status?

Two MRP Agents at closing with Active Duty Military Members   


Before a real estate agent can take their MRP certification exam, there are a few criteria they need to meet first:

  1. Agents must be in good standing with the National Association of Realtors®, which also means they must be a licensed Realtor® which in itself has a higher set of standards and code of ethics real estate agents must meet.
  2. Realtors® must complete a one-day Military Relocation Professional certification course and complete research on their own to clearly understand military basics such as acronyms, branches, and military ranks.
  3. They must also complete 2 one-hour webinars and pass a final exam with a score of 80% or higher.

The above criteria are all essential (and valuable) qualifications to consider when choosing an agent with the MRP designation, but are some MRP agents better than others? We think so, and we'll break down why next.

Are Some MRP Real Estate Agents Better Than Others?

 United States Air Force Officer Retiring From the Military


We discussed how a real estate agent can achieve the MRP designation and the certification process is certainly stringent so any agent with the MRP certification should be versed in military specifics. But, how can you be sure you've found the most qualified MRP agent to provide the real estate services you need? In our opinion, one of the first things to look for (aside from the MRP designation) is whether they are retired or active-duty military!

You're looking for real estate professionals who understand military life and all the joy (and sometimes pain) it entails. So, it makes sense to choose an agent either currently serving or a veteran. Here at Charleston's Best Home Team, we're a retired military family of 22 years and have consistently helped our fellow military brothers and sisters with their home needs.

Because we've been certified as an MRP, we're well-versed in military matters. But because we've served as well, we're familiar with the challenges and protocol PCS orders entail.

Qualifying for a VA Loan, VA Financing and VA Appraisals can all benefit from an agent who is well-versed in their special requirements having experienced it first hand.

Being active-duty military means the possibility of relocating with little time to prepare. An MRP real estate agent understands those special housing needs and can help you when that time comes. In addition, they'll help you navigate the various military benefits and support offered to you.

Granted, just because a real estate agent has served in the military doesn't mean they're knowledgable about VA Loans, what closing costs are involved with VA Loans, and other details. So, it's best to speak with several MRP-certified agents to get a better feel for their expertise or ask others in the military community for referrals.

How Can an MRP Help Someone in the Military With Buying or Selling a Home?

Charleston's Best Home Team with Retired Military Member


Military Relocation Professionals serve all areas of the military market, not exclusively near the major bases so you should be able to find MRPs to help you sell your home and then to buy a home in your new area as well.

MRPs (Especially ones who've served) tend to have values that align with yours as a member of the military like patriotism, professionalism, organization and they understand the "American Dream" of homeownership, too.

They fully understand the challenges unique to military members facing frequent housing changes, sometimes with little notice. The moving protocols that need to be followed can affect the relocation decisions you make about your home and an MRP is ready to meet them head-on.

PCSing military members tend to be power shoppers that have short timelines. The willingness for MRPs to do the lion's share of legwork is a true asset in completing a real estate transaction quickly.

Of course, we also speak the language! Between PCS, RAP, BAH, and other acronyms, there's no explanation necessary!

Can you buy or sell a home without an MRP?


While it may seem appealing to buy or sell a home without an agent, it's important to understand what you'll be getting into if you decide to go it alone.

Firstly, there's going to be significant time and research involved on your part to understand the process in both your selling and buying locations. Understanding the nuances of the neighborhood you're considering buying in and having a solid network to be aware of upcoming listings will be helpful, too.

Submitting formal offers, negotiating prices, understanding, and including contingencies when going through the process is crucial to making informed decisions. And locating reliable home inspectors, appraisers, contractors, mortgage lenders, and others will be on your shoulders.

And to top it all off is the need to deal with your regular duties and follow protocols, It may be easier to simply let an agent handle both the buying and selling process for you.

Why You Should Consider Using a Military Relocation Professional


Buying and selling a home is stressful enough to begin with. Add to that the stress of a permanent change of station and all the protocols involved and it's important to have a knowledgable and empathetic partner in your corner to help. Here are a few considerations for using an MRP:

Local Knowledge


You should always look for a real estate agent with strong knowledge of the local area and market. It makes it even more important when dealing with military relocation that they understand those things AND the military transition process as well.



For any real estate agent, you should consider if they have extensive experience with real estate and how many homes they've successfully helped clients buy and sell. In addition, how many of those clients have been members of the military?



Does the agent have a good network of professionals that handle all aspects of the buying and selling process? Do those businesses have great reputations as well?



Does the real estate agent respond to you quickly? When interviewing previous clients, is that something they found to be a strength with this agent? When dealing with a PCS, communication is going to be a key factor to ensure you're in the loop and up-to-date at all times to keep your stress levels low so you can focus on other matters.

Gut Feeling


In the end, it's all going to come down to if you feel great about working with the agent. After all, they're handling one of the biggest events in your life and you want someone you feel comfortable working with.

Final Thoughts


With over 8,300 MRPs nationwide, there's certainly a good pool to choose from, but it's important to understand how one MRP can differ from another. Like they say with real estate agents, "Not all real estate agents are Realtors®, but all Realtors® are real estate agents." - likewise, Not all Realtors® are MRPs, but all MRP's are Realtors® and not all MRP's are alike!

So, when you receive your change of station orders, or it's simply time for a new chapter, make sure you're choosing a certified Military Relocation Professional to help make the home buying process the most positive experience and transition possible. You'll be glad you did.

Call or email us today to see how our extensive experience working with military real estate transactions can help you!

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