Definitely, purchasing a real property or a house is an intricate process, not to mention the big investment that goes along with it. Thus, especially for first home or property buyers, the aid of a professional real estate broker is deemed essential.
There are numerous real estate brokers that you can find, particularly if you are in search of a property or house in Singapore. But not all of them can be trusted. There are those who pose as brokers then plan malicious act against you. In order not to be a victim of such scam, you have to choose carefully the broker you will hire.
One way to ensure that you will get a credible real estate broker in Singapore is to look for a licensed one. Licensure will prove that a certain real estate broker is reputable and has gained the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience in such market. Moreover, a licensed real estate broker can give you complete information with regard to the house or property you are interested to buy. Such information is important to ensure that you will not make a wrong decision.
It is as well important to check the types of services that are being offered by real estate brokers. These are the types of professionals who provide unique kinds of services to their clients, so you must make sure that you will get the maximum benefits at reasonable rates.
Remember that registered or licensed brokers provide property or home buyers with only the best solutions. You can secure the services of these experts to ensure you benefit from the purchase.
In any real estate transaction in Singapore, it is very important that you disclose pertinent information to two parties that generally involves the exchange. This helps prevent potential conflict between the relationship of agents, clients, and other agencies as well. Disclosure requires honesty and professionalism on both parties.
Benefits of Disclosure in Agencies
- A client who discloses damages to his or her property will help the agent in properly valuating it. Aside from that, he/she will help the agent in gathering various ideas as to how to increase the value of the property through repairs and maintenance.
- Proper disclosure of the roles of the agent to the transaction will help their clients understand and gain knowledge about their agent’s responsibilities. This will help clear the minds of the clients about any unclear terms and conditions of their relationship. This will also let the client know what to expect from their agents.
- Disclosure of the rights of the client will educate the client on what they deserve to get out from the services they have bought from the agency.
- Disclosure of the system of the agency will help the client understand how the agency works and will help answer the questions that cloud their minds during the transaction. Also, this will help the client understand about the goals of the agency and will give them the idea on whether the agency will be able to provide for his/her needs.
- Disclosure of any relationships to other parties involved in the transaction, dual agencies for example, will help prevent conflicts of interests between the clients and the agencies. Additional fees, such as commissions, given by another party of the same transaction shall be disclosed to the other party to avoid misunderstandings.
- Proper disclosure of anything that involves the transaction will help ensure that any activities done are within legal boundary.
Little do most people know that realtors make money through commission. Their income depends on the value of the property they sell or the services they render to someone buying a property. In Singapore, the standard commission of realtors is around $5–6, which will be split between the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent. The person selling the property will be the one liable to pay the full commission.
The amount of commission that a realtor takes home varies on certain factors. Most realtors work for real estate companies. Commonly, a realtor pays 30–50% of his commission to the firm and only leaves as small as 1.5% to himself. A realtor can also work directly with a real estate broker, who will give the realtor some referrals, and the broker will receive a share with this. If you are a self-employed realtor, the commission is all yours. But this kind of realtor is more at risk of losing business against huge competitors.
Commissions are negotiable too. The plan is that the level of service given by a certified realtor is worth the full commission. But if the real estate market gets slow, realtors, even the certified ones, are tempted to cut down their commissions in order to sell more properties.
It cannot be denied that the real estate market is a very competitive one. The usual salary of a realtor is not much affected during cold and hot markets. During hot markets, the profession will be crowded by real estate agents who believe that they can make an immediate buck. Considering the numerous agents there are, it restricts the amount of house that any individual realtor can sell. During a cold market, on the other hand, few houses are sold but only a few agents sell them. Thus, the income potential evens out.
All real estate agencies in Singapore develop an agreement that will stipulate the roles of the agents, the buyers, and the sellers of various real estate properties. If you are looking to transact in real estate, it is very important you understand the relationships between the parties involved and their respective roles as well. With that, you will be able to experience a smooth flowing real estate transaction.
Types of Agreement in a Real Estate Agency
• The Buyer’s Agent Agreement
The buyer’s agent agreement stipulates that the real estate agent must be loyal and confidential to the buyer. He must also disclose any information about his relationship with other parties involved during the real estate transaction. Upon agreeing to the terms of the agreement, the buyer will then sign the contract as proof that he/she is willing to be represented by the agent.
• The Seller’s Agent Agreement
The seller’s agent, also known as the listing agent, obviously represents the seller in any real estate transaction involving the property he wishes to sell. The terms of the agreement between the seller and the agent stipulates that the agent must disclose any structural damage of the real estate property. He must act according to the interest of the property’s seller and be loyal to him/her. As both parties sign the terms, it will serve as a proof that they are in agreement to what has been discussed in terms of the services and their relationship and roles in the transaction.
• The Transaction Agent Agreement
A transaction agent is not the same as the seller or the buyer’s agent. Unlike them, he does not represent any party, but is actually tasked to work for fairness among the parties. Thus, his job is to successfully close a deal wherein both parties can benefit. However, a buyer or seller’s agent can also be a transaction agent if the original agreement of the agent with the buyer or seller says so. But, this also has to be agreed upon by both parties.
• Dual Agency or Limited Agency Agreement
There are situations wherein one agency can represent both the buyer and the seller. This relationship is called the dual or the limited agency. However, if you are the buyer or the seller, it is very important to note that having this type of relationship agreement can give rise to conflicts between two parties. This is primarily the reason why having this type of agreement is not highly advisable.
If you’re looking to buy or sell a luxurious home in Singapore, it is highly advisable for you to hire a real estate agent that will be able to represent you. This is primarily because real estate agents are very knowledgeable about the market and the legalities that govern it.
How to Choose the Right Real Estate Agent
- It is important for you to be able to tell the difference between a licensed realtor and a licensed real estate sales associate. Licensed real estate agents are those who are members in Singapore’s board of realtors.
- For you to be able to find the best real estate agent in the country, you can ask anyone you know who have experienced being handled by various realtors. They are good sources of information on who and which company to avoid.
- Before you settle with a realtor, make sure that he/she will be able to suit your every need. Ensure that he/she will be able to give you what you want and not what he/she thinks you want. You can do this by meeting the agent and asking them questions about the real estate.
- If you are looking to sell your real estate property, arrange an appointment with the agent and present to them the property you wish to sell. Right there and then, he will be able to present you an initial marketing plan. With that, you can ask him questions about the plan and tell them what you want. Also, discuss with him about the price and the commission. If you both agree to the terms, he will let you sign an agreement.
- You can also ask the agent for his/her sales record for the past years in order for you to be completely sure about their capabilities as a real estate agent.
Purchasing a home is indeed a complex process, especially if this is your first time to do so. In Singapore, there is a wide variety of real estate properties available, but you can’t just pick anything that you bump into. The home buying process is not a piece of cake. You need to consider certain things. To be well guided, here are some essential tips.
Know What You Want
Considering that investing in a home is a big move, you must know first what you really want. In searching for your dream home, you must establish your requirements – some sort of criteria that will serve as your basis and your guide.
Get in Touch with a Realtor
As what is being stressed earlier, purchasing a real estate is a complex matter. Considering that there are lots of things to consider, the aid of a professional realtor is definitely important. A realtor will guide you (1) in your search for a house; (2) during the negotiation process; (3) in financing, should you need one; and (4) on transaction techniques, thereby making home buying easier for you. But remember to settle for a reputable realtor only. The Better Business Bureau is the place where you can get the necessary information about real estate agents or realtors. You can also search for them online. However, the most reliable referrals are those of your relatives, friends, and co-workers.
Prepare Enough Funds
Make sure you have enough cash at hand to pay for the down payment. Otherwise, you will have to settle for the unattractive alternative of paying for a PMI or a private mortgage insurance, and this can you cost a lot of money.
Be Familiar with Your Legal Rights
This is very important in the process of home buying, especially in finalizing the deal. You must get a good faith of estimate for the home purchase. Such estimate should include some important factors such as the down payment, monthly installment fees, and other home-loan-related costs. It is as well imperative to receive a fair idea on how much money you will likely spend and how much the purchase-related costs will be.
These are just some of the home buying tips that could really be helpful for you while looking for a house to buy in Singapore. If you follow this simple guide, you might just end up owning the house of your dream.
Real estate companies in Singapore offer various services to their clients to help them buy or sell their properties. Most of their services are actually paid, but there are some that they freely do for their clients. These free services will definitely suit their client’s needs in buying and selling their real estate properties.
Free Services Usually Offered by Real Estate Companies to their Clients
- Staging your real estate property. For your property to be sold or bought, you need to be able to design it attractively in order to leave a good impression to potential buyers. Property staging is offered for free by real estate agents mainly because they are concerned about quotas; that is, they need to sell a number of properties within a period of time in order for them to have an added incentive from their company. This pretty much keeps both the clients and the agents on the same page because they have the same goal which is to sell the property.
- Valuation of your property. Property valuation is one of the main services that real estate agents offer. However, what most of us don’t know is that it is generally offered for free. In order for you to buy or sell a property for a reasonable price, you need to have an agent to perform an in depth valuation of your property. It is important to note that values of real estate properties work almost similarly to the stock market because prices basically go up and down. If you are looking to sell, you might as well sell your property when prices are high. In contrast, if you are not in a hurry to buy one, you should buy when prices are low.
- Analysis of the location of your property. It is also very important to note that the location of your property affects its value. Properties that are located in upscale neighborhoods are generally priced higher than those that are located elsewhere. Neighborhood analysis is simultaneously done with the property valuation. As soon as the agent is able to value your property with various factors being considered, you will be able to price your property based on their valuation.
- Maintenance of your property. Some real estate companies in Singapore usually offer maintenance services for your property for free. However, it is very important to note that these services are only limited; usually, they only offer housekeeping services for free while other maintenance services have respective costs.
When buying or selling a real estate property, it is very important to pay particular attention to the real estate cycle, or also known as the housing cycle. The housing cycle generally reflects how the economy is doing. These cycles, however, fluctuate but the patterns are actually very helpful when it comes to deciding whether or not to enter the market.
Timing the Singapore Housing Cycle
- Be updated of the real estate market prices. There are websites and applications that offer free charting tools which will be useful in charting prices over the time period.
- Assess the trend and improve your market timing skills. It is very important to note and understand how the key factors of the real estate market cycles, such as employment levels and rental rates, affect the past, the future, and the present timing cycles.
- Determine the patterns of the cycle. Cyclical patterns have four phases namely the rising phase, the peaking phase, the falling phase, and the bottoming phase. It is very important that you learn how to recognize this phase and understand the implications of each phase.
- Learn about past housing cycles. Learning about them will help prevent you from mistakes in investing at the wrong side of the cycle.
- The stock market and the real estate market are actually pretty similar and related. To understand how real estate market works, you also need to learn about the stocks. You can learn more about them by studying the latest chart books of the stock market and other indicators of the economy.
- Investing at the right time is very important to be successful in the real estate market. Aside from that, you also need to have strategies in investing your properties and money. Make sure that you invest wisely in order for you to get the best value of your money for the future.
There have been a growing number of people, particularly in Singapore, who have been entering the market for real estate investment. However, the most victorious are those who can make an attracting real estate business blueprint.
A real estate business plan has an array of various purposes, and it is vital for any aspiring real estate investor to know how essential such plan is. Now, the question is how one can come up with a sure-firing real estate business plan.
Drawing Capital to Close the Deal
A well-made and professional real estate business plan will be useful for real estate investors to draw in the deal that one requires to close, especially those one-of-a-kind deals. The secret in order to be victorious in the real estate world is through the many transactions that can be made utilizing other people’s cash. This is where the real estate business plan intervenes. The real estate business blueprint will show to prospective investors and money lenders how the business will lead to success.
Utilizing a Business Plan to Guide the Growing Business
A well-created real estate business plan can be your guide as your real estate business grows and expands. It is indeed challenging to have such business off the ground, particularly when the real estate market slows down, making it more challenging to move on. But with a good real estate business plan at hand, your business will be well guided as it moves forward.
Asking the Aid of Experts or Professionals
For most real estate investors, preparing a good quality real estate business plan is feasible. However, it would be best to seek the help of experts in doing so. You can get a tax professional or an accountant to take a look at your real estate business plan and give you necessary insights on changes.
You can also let a competent real estate business lawyer review your business plan to give you guarantee that your document is legally sound and free from any errors or omissions.
When drafting your real estate business plan, remember that such document will serve as the cornerstone for your new enterprise. Therefore, it is vital that it will turn out to be of good quality.
In the market of purchasing or selling properties, for instance in Singapore, it is vital that an individual has someone who can give him expert advice in both the legal and practical factors to be considered. The aid of a real estate agent, therefore, makes perfect sense. One may not like the idea of getting a real estate agent because it can be costly. But the real score is, by the end of the deal, a person can actually spend lesser on the overall expenses. Let us take a look at some of the perks when hiring a real estate agent.
One of the main benefits that a buyer can realize in getting a real estate agent is that a real estate agent can assist a buyer in understanding how he can afford the purchase and in settling for a loan. When it comes to these, real estate agents are the most fitting individuals as they are knowledgeable with regard to which properties are available for sale as they are registered in various lists that provide complete details on the homes and properties in the market. And if a buyer is hard pressed as of the moment, the agent can qualify the houses based on his requirements and so shortlist the properties available. Thus, this will make the buyer save time by eliminating the property that he wouldn’t consider living in.
A real estate agent can also orient a buyer with interest rates, market rate, and other financial factors. They can also let a buyer meet trustworthy home inspectors. Most importantly, a buyer will not have to worry about the service fees of a real estate agent as his commission will be catered by the seller.
On the seller’s part, on the other hand, working with a real estate agent will also mean lesser time needed to shortlist prospective buyers. The agent will handle the process of presenting the house or property for sale with all its features to the potential buyers. The seller might need to show up only when the deal will be closed. When talking about property estimation, the agent can also assist the seller. Real estate agents are well acquainted with the market and the constraints concerning property value. The seller is thus assured that his properties will be sold at the finest possible price and that he can get the best possible return.
It has always been better to have an intermediary to work in one’s behalf when dealing with a certain transaction, and this is what precisely a real estate agent is best at.