How do I pick the right property agent? Now that you have decided to use a sales agent to assist you with either the sale of your property or your search to purchase a property, it is important to ask the right questions so to ensure that you are appointing a strong and reliable agent. In this article we will be covering all the things that you need to know and ask before you make the decision to appoint any specific agent.
But if you are still thinking about whether you even need a sales agent, make sure to go to our last article by clicking here. In that article, we talk about everything from the role of a property agent to what you can expect from an agent vs doing it yourself.
So let’s begin shall we?
The first thing to do before appointing an agent is to check if they are licensed and registered with CEA (Council for Estate Agents). The CEA is a statutory board under the Ministry of National Development where they are responsible for the licensing of estate agents in Singapore. To check your agent’s registration all you have to do is to type in the agent’s name or registered mobile number to https://www.cea.gov.sg/public-register. The CEA is also who you can turn to if you have issues or a complaint against the conduct of your agent.
The second thing to check is the experience of your sales agent. Ask questions like how long have they been in real estate, what real estate company are they working for, what is their success rate, do they have a portfolio of closed transactions or active listings to show you, etc. These questions will reveal the strength of your sales agent. I mean it’s pretty straightforward. The more transactions (experience) they have, the better they are at handling your property through negotiations, deals or any problems that may occur.
Ask your sales agent what strategies they are going to implement to get you what you need. For example if you are selling your property, ask what type of channels will they use to market your property? Are they only using property listing channels (propertyguru, 99.co, srx, etc) or do they have other marketing tools such as social media marketing, video marketing, etc. Strategies play an important role in determining the effectiveness of your sales agent when it comes to selling. To find the answer, ask your sales agent these types of questions:
- Do they have a professional website that draws direct buyers? What is the monthly traffic to their website?
- Do they have a proprietary list of buyers through their newsletters or other database?
- What are the latest technology tools they use? Are they able to provide the latest 3D virtual tours and not just 360 degree photos?
- Are they experts in social media or do they have a digital marketing team helping them? Do they help to sponsor ads to reach more customers?
For buyers on the other hand, you will need to know their role and how they intend to get you the type of property that you are looking for. A buyer agent’s role is to shortlist properties that suit your criteria, coordinate viewings and handle negotiations that puts your best interest forward. You will need to make sure that your buyer agent has a good plan for you.
One of the first things that come to mind before picking an agent has to be commission. Before finding an agent you will probably need to do a little research to strike the right balance between how much you are willing to pay, what the market rate commission is and the rate for a quality agent. There will always be agents that cost more, and agents that cost less. It all depends on what you are looking for. A typical agent commission can range from 0.9% to 2%. So make sure to ask your agent straight up what their commission looks like.
5. Full time or part time?
Another really important question to ask your property agent is whether they are full time or part time. The main difference between the two is that full time agents have more time to work with you, they are almost always more experienced, more committed and that they are exposed to more resources than a part time agent. But both should share equal professionalism, so the choice once again is yours depending on your needs.
Communication is a key factor when choosing an agent and it should be highly discussed between yourself and your agent before progressing. Poor communication can cause a lot of stress from something small like misunderstandings to something larger like trust issues. So before you pick your agent make sure they understand what equates to good communication in your point of view. This can come in the form of boundaries for example calling at reasonable hours (when to call and when not to), progress of sale, frequency of updates, etc.
There are good people and bad people in every line of work. So of course, the field of real estate is no exception. In the years there have been a couple of horror stories that have come to light about sales agents who go rogue. For example this one where an agent cheated his client out of $20K-$30K off of a sale of his client’s condo. If you don’t want this to happen to you, then you have to be weary and look out for red flags when you speak to an agent.
Why should you appoint Auctionjia?
With all this information in mind, look no further, your ideal property agent could be right here with us. Here at Auctionjia, we offer our best services through our team of dedicated and experienced agents, who are more than ready to help you with whatever your needs may be, whether it be buying or selling your property. Some highlights of our services include free 3D virtual tour, greater savings and low commission rates, free transaction data to price your property, Auctionjia sponsored online and offline marketing, and so much more. To find all of the perks you can get when you appoint Auctionjia, click here.
Need another reason to appoint us? Why not look at what others have to say about us. We have been selected as one of the "Top 10 Condo Real Estate Specialists in Singapore" by Singapore's Finest and one of the "12 Best Property Agencies in Singapore" by Best in Singapore.
To get in contact with us you can write in to us by clicking the button below and we will assign one of our in-house dedicated salesperson to assist you.