5 Things You Need To Know About Engaging A Property Agent

property agent guide

For a vast majority of Malaysians, buying or selling a home will be the biggest financial transaction they’ll undertake. However, due to its infrequent nature, most are left clueless as to the process involved which is why property agents are sought after.

Most people form impressions of their property agents through word-of-mouth, movies, TV shows and commercials because they simply don’t interact with them often enough to gain an informed opinion.

Real estate is a complicated business and is considered a major pillar of the global economy, yet so few people understand it. If you are planning to dispose of your property due to higher demand for properties, do you know what you’re in for?

To give you a better picture of dealing with property agents in Malaysia, here is a list of things that your agent may not be telling you (but you should know):

1. Real estate negotiators are not real estate agents

Most Malaysians assume both are the same, as they both seem to be doing the same job. In reality, they are both different professions.

Real estate agents must possess a certain level of experience, knowledge and education before being granted a license by the Board of Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents. A real estate negotiator on the other hand, is not required to.

To maintain their estate agent license, all licensed real estate agent must take additional continuing education courses yearly above and beyond that which is already required.

Usually a real estate agent will have a few negotiators to help service their clients, but it is always best to ensure that you deal with an agent.

2. Engaging an agent is similar to hiring someone

A good property agent will help you set the right price, market the home professionally, qualify the buyers and expertly negotiate and finalise the deal. Hence, the role of an agent is extremely important to successfully sell your property.

Just like you would when you hire someone to work for you, engaging a real estate agent will require some form of background check and an interview. Some of the important aspects to look into when it comes to potential agents are:

  • previous and current portfolio
  • his experience with the type of property you will be assigning to him
  • recommendation by friends and family

Just as you are sizing up the agent for a good fit, he or she will also likely be interviewing you, too. Be wary of agents who don’t ask you questions as good agents are just as selective about their clients.

3. The standard fees to engage an agent

Registered Estate Agents are estate agents registered by the Board of Valuer, Appraisers and Estate Agents, Malaysia.

Their agency fee for service rendered is a maximum of 3% of the sale price of the property.

4. The type of agent you need

There are many types of agents out there that can market your property on your behalf, and each have a different job scope and their set of restrictions. It is best that you understand the arrangement with your agent to avoid contravention.

  • Exclusive agents – Only one agent is appointed and the owner cannot sell on his own
  • Sole agents – Only one agent is appointed and the owner reserves the right to sell on his own
  • Joint agency – Two or three agents are appointed to sell
  • Adhoc/General – Any number of agents can be appointed to sell and all appointments are to be in writing

5. You may not need a real estate agent at all

Real estate agents will sometimes make the process of selling a home seem complicated and best left to professionals with experience and resources.

If you have the time and resources to manage the calls and viewing by potential buyers, it makes sense to handle the sale yourself as, without the commission, will allow you to sell cheaper than market price.

Selling a house can be a huge headache for most and if you’re thinking about hiring a real estate agent, consider the points above in arriving at the best decision for yourself.

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This article was first published in February 2014 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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