Engaging a real estate agent

http://www.thestar.com.my/Business/Business-News/2014/06/21/Engaging-a-real-estate-agent-Hiring-the-right-one-can-help-make-buying-or-selling-your-property-less/

Engaging a real estate agent

Chan: ‘No one agent is good in all areas, so it’s best to find someone who’s familiar with where the property is located.’

Chan: ‘No one agent is good in all areas, so it’s best to find someone who’s familiar with where the property is located.’

BUYING and selling property can be a tedious process. Engaging a real estate agent, however, can help alleviate the burden.

But before you run out to find one, consider the following factors when deciding if that property agent can provide the services you’re looking for.

Is he or she registered?

Malaysia Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA) president Siva Shanker believes that this is the most important question to ask before engaging a real estate agent.

“There are a whole lot of individuals out there who aren’t registered – but pretend to be,” he tells StarBizweek.

Siva admits that such “bogus” property negotiators are a menace to the industry.

 

Siva: 'There are a whole lot of individuals out there who aren't registered - but pretend to be.'

Siva: ‘There are a whole lot of individuals out there who aren’t registered – but pretend to be.’

“Educating the public is important. If you’re sick, would you go to a sick doctor? You wouldn’t, would you?

“Unfortunately, the enforcement against bogus agents is poor, which is why they are still thriving,” he says.

However, Siva points out that from June 25, all registered realtors will be given a “special tag” by the Board of Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Malaysia to certify that they are legitimate.

“So the next time you want to engage an estate agent, ask them for their tag!

“In the last eight months, about 10,000 property negotiators have been given a special tag to wear,” he says.

The Board of Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents was set up in 1981 under the purview of the Ministry of Finance.

Its main function is to regulate the valuers, appraisers and estate agents practising in Malaysia.

Where to find an estate agent

According Zerin Properties, a simple way to find an agent is by asking family, friends and co-workers whom they have engaged.

“Check your local newspapers and homes magazines. An agent with a number of advertisements most likely has a fairly extensive marketing budget and experience.

 

“Be certain, though, that the agent does not have too many listings to service the sale of your home effectively,” Zerin Properties says on its website.

Questions to ask

According to Zerin Properties, among the questions one can and should ask a potential negotiator include whether that agent is practising full time; years of experience; familiarity with the area / location; number of transactions handled over the past year; names of existing clients for quality reference; specific marketing plans for the property in question and modes of keeping clients informed on the progress of the sale of the property.

Picking the right agent

SK Brothers Realty Sdn Bhd general manager Chan Ai Cheng points out that it would always be best to select an estate agent that is “familiar” with the location where the property is situated.

“It’s always best to engage someone who is an area specialist. Malaysia is big!

“No one agent is good in all areas, so it’s best to find someone who’s familiar with where the property is located,” she says.

Siva concurs that some negotiators are experts in certain areas.

“Estate agents tend to specialise based on location or category (for example residential, commercial or industrial properties).

“So, when you’re looking for a home, ensure that the realtor knows the area well. If not, it will end up being a learning curve for both of you.” In some cases, an estate agent, especially one who’s experienced, might be able to provid added value to the transaction, says Siva.

“Some estate agents may be able help you find a banker to secure your loan or lawyer to assist you with the conveyancing procedure. Some might even know contractors that can aid you with your renovations or interior design plans.

“Because some of these agents have been in the business for a while, they have better contacts than the average man on the street. In fact, these realtors actually end up being one-stop service providers for clients.”

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