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How to choose the right real estate Agent?

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How to choose the right real estate Agent?

Last updated: July 28 2010
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  • #21

    #21

    Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

    Know your Broker/Agent

    The notion of a real estate agent is slowly moving away from the traditional transaction oriented attitude to a more proactive one, as sought out by today's corporates.

    Here is an article which explains who a real estate agent is, why there is a growing need for commercial agents, more specifically, Tenant Representation Agents (TRA) and what sets a good TRA apart from the rest.

    Q: Who is an agent?
    A: A real estate agent is called by different names in different markets such as broker/ advisor/ consultant/ intermediary etc. A commercial real estate agent is defined as someone who is authorized to act for or represent another in commercial real estate matters or as an individual or company, who for compensation buys, sells, leases, exchanges, evaluates or otherwise negotiates a commercial real estate transaction for a corporate.

    Q: Why use an agent when one can do the transaction themselves?
    A.: Many people have heard that you can save money by acquiring or disposing real estate assets by yourself, without using an agent. This is because typically agents earn a certain percentage of the selling price or rental and sellers and tenants feel that if they do it on their own that money could be saved.

    However, for the majority of corporates, hiring an agent is well worth the money they will pay for it. An agent has many responsibilities that a corporate may not think about before choosing to do it on their own. A competent agent can do much more than find the corporate the right space at the right location at the right price.

    Q: What are the different types of agents?
    A.: Commercial agents can be classified into tenant representation agents or advisors, landlord representation agents or leasing agents and agents who pursue a middle ground representing both the tenant and the landlord.

    Q: How does a Tenant Representation Agent add value to a corporate?
    A:. With stock markets demanding profit growth / improved shareholder value, restrictions on capital expenditure and with property being the second or third highest cost, corporate occupiers expect a TRA to offer much more value added services than just show property options and conclude a transaction.

    The TRA needs to make sure that the real estate decision is consistent and supports not just the real estate strategy but also the business and corporate strategy. The end goal of a TRA should be to tailor a deal to meet the tenant’s business needs. He would do this by rent minimisation, flexibility in lease terms, true market or structured rent reviews and space flexibility to accommodate growth.

    Q: What are the issues you should ensure that your Tenant Representation Agent focuses on?

    A: The TRA needs to know what tenants look for. The corporate occupier is looking for short term leases to align with 2-3 years business planning cycle, they prefer options or break clauses, they are averse to sublease risk which is a drag on business and they expect flexibility which is most critical.

    Instead of starting the space search process by identifying space options, the TRA should first understand business unit objectives of the occupier such as corporate image, time horizon, financial objectives etc. Then he should determine occupancy requirements such as projected head count, space standards, technical and operation issues etc. Next he will need to evaluate the current facilities to understand existing lease commitments, building systems etc. The next step would be assess office market factors and opportunities such as sublease potential, sale potential, market trends etc.

    Based on the above the TRA should evaluate alternatives, gain consensus, make recommendations and implement tactical activities and strategic programs concerning real estate.

    Q. What other areas should your Tenant Representation Agent keep in mind?

    A: The TRA also needs to help the occupier balance trade off’s between issues such as centralization vs decentralization, lease vs own, quality vs economy, visibility vs privacy, front office vs back-office, least cost vs most flexible and customer proximity vs employee convenience.

    The TRA should also realize that the corporate occupier today is looking at a more strategic approach to real estate, flexible solutions, outsourcing / partnerships with real estate providers, greater focus on security and environmental issues and a decision framework involving global / regional inputs.

    Even in a downturn, the TRA can identify and take advantage of ripe opportunities to optimize real estate assets and contribute significant value to a company’s bottom line. This can be achieved most effectively by developing a strategic approach to cost containment initiatives, constantly reinforcing a cost saving mentality and aligning real estate activities with overall corporate objectives.

    The biggest challenge for a tenant representation advisor would be to transform the traditional transaction oriented attitude in to a more proactive attitude focusing on the strategic needs of the company.

    So the next time a corporate needs to look for a real estate agent, they should remember to look for someone who is capable to offer the above mentioned services.


    Article in MoneyControl by:
    Ramesh Nair,
    Jones Lang LaSalle

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    • #22

      #22

      Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

      How to find a good real estate Agent - TIPS

      A few tips on How to find a good real estate Agent:
      • Meet agents out in their working environment, not in their offices. Good agents spend very little time at their desks.
      • Another good method is to contact the agent with whom a friend or relative worked. If this agent produced positive results for a friend of yours, there's a good chance s/he will do the same for you.
      • Look for signs that the agent is busy. A hard-working, go-getter of an agent is what you want. But if you feel slighted, like if your agent spends most of his time with you on his cellphone with another customer, find a different agent.
      • It is important that your agent is knowledgeable. Ask questions about things you have learned through your new-found interest in the real estate field (to educate yourself - like this forum) If he/she doesn't know substantially more than you - after all, this is his/her livelihood! - go on to another prospective agent. Local knowledge is particularly critical.
      • A good agent is important to you when buying a home, particularly if you are buying a home for the first time. In case, your agents is techsavvy, (should be preferably ) View the agent site and see how he/she is using content to market themselves.

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      • #23

        #23

        Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

        Duplex in Ansal Hi tech city

        Hi All,

        Recently Ansal API has given advertisement in the news paper for their new bookings for Duplex(size 55 sqm,100 sqm) duplex in Sushant Hitech city in lucknow.Could some body let me know that wheatehr shal i book any duplex or shall i wait for the price to come down.

        Thanks a lot
        ajay

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        • #24

          #24

          Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

          Very nice answer, Thank you so much for sharing such useful info about how to get right realtor.

          Originally posted by Pinnacle View Post
          Very valid point Suruchi.
          Would like to share my articles published in Times and Asian Age, on How to get the Right Realtor for your deal ...

          Feel free to give me a feedback
          ----------------------------------------------------------------
          Traditionally the role of a broker or as the modern day avtaar known as realtor, was more an exercise of showing properties and making buyer and sellers to meet. Just about anyone cud become a broker as there are no entry barriers to the trade and all kinds of people enter the trade. The fly by nite operators gave bad name to the business and caused problems to the few genuine brokers in the business.

          But the modern day broker is evolving and keeping in tune with the times
          1. Role is evolving from that of just finger pointing to being a true consultant in all sense
          2. Need to have all round knowledge of not just real estate but all peripherial areas like housing finance, property laws, insurances related to real estate, property management services etc
          3. Represent both the buyer and seller as their consultant and ensure that both their interests are protected at all times and the entire process of the deal is not only transparent but also hassle free
          4. The broker should have excellent networking skills with affiliated professionals like advocates, architects, builders and all related professionals
          5. Today brokers also have to effectively network with brokers in other locations so as to do bussn in other areas and represent their clients in areas outside their jurisdiction


          Even in this new age era of direct marketing by Builders, Realtors hold a very important role in ensuring that your once-in-a-life dream home accquistion doesn’t run into rough weather. And again here, how smooth is the process, depends on what does your Realtor do for you ?

          Is he ready to walk that extra mile to make you transition smooth, hassle free and memorable in more sense than one ? That all depends on you choosing your Realtor wisely.

          What Should buyer or seller look for in a Realtor
          1. Is the Realtor is full time in bussn – part timers in brokerage are not serious about their work and cant represent the clients faithfully and do justice to their deals.
          2. Qualifications – A well educated and qualified Realtor will certainly be more professional than his counterparts
          3. Operates from a office – that way he / she will be accessible when u need them and also look for people who have assistants and fully equipped offices so u can be attended to when they are not around and usually avoid brokers who are one man shows and don’t have time for all the clients
          4. Knowledge – all around knowledge of current market scenes, rates, developments, latest in legalities
          5. Reputation – get references from past clients, ask about broker’s service levels, his scope of services etc
          6. Broker’s networking with lawyers, builders, architects, other real estate
          7. Membership of associations – Shows him to be a part of the organised fraternity


          How important is a Realtor
          1. Typically home buying/selling is the single most important and expensive decision in the Indian middle class life, so it makes sense to get an expert to guide u in the process
          2. The Realtor’s experience will guide you thru the complex maze of buying/selling a property and also advice you on the reputation of various builders and projects, current market scenario of realty, and the various pitfalls, so the client can stay away from problems
          3. Realtor can be a one point contact for all the various components that go in a deal like housing finance, legal, interiors etc (more like a Single Stop Boutique in Realty Shopping)

          So before you commit to use the services of a Realtor next time, ask yourself What does your Realtor do for you ? And make sure that you get your money’s worth for the commission that you will pay.

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          • #25

            #25

            Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

            Good question. But I will go with mraafi

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            • #26

              #26

              Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

              A good real estate agent will listen to you and find properties that meet both your needs and price range. Ask them enough questions and answer the questions the agent asks you. My agent showed me several houses online 1st then we decided which ones to see in person. After the first few houses the agent got a better feeling about what I was looking for and showed me houses that met my needs.

              My agent is responsive to my needs and looks out for my interests. Often pointing out things I missed and suggesting more questions. I hope you are fortunate enough to find an agent like mine. She was refered to me by a coworker. I would never ask her to reduce her commission and on one property I put an offer in on the seller said he would sell if both agents reduced their fee. I declined the offer, my agent works too hard to take less. That's how you know you have a good one. When they go out of their way to make you comfortable about buying and you feel comfortable talking to them.

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              • #27

                #27

                Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

                Do go with a predetermined mindset while appointing a broker/agent

                I feel some of the points made are really harsh for young upcoming fresh real estate agents, now evryone cannot set up a office and recruit staff and start going.

                Agents can work from their home full time and give the same service as some of the established agents sitting in office can do.

                Also an agents job is to not sit in office, it's not an IT or BAnking job. He has to be in the the field with the client or if has no client around he needs to be in the market to do his survey or visit builders office etc to keep himself equipped with the latest happenings.

                Finally you can make out from speaking to a person how serious and knowledgeable he is in his subject before appointing him.

                Don't go with a predefined mindset while appointing a broker.

                I bought a property, My agent was uneducated but he was honest to his work.

                Appreciate your comments.

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                • #28

                  #28

                  Re : How to choose the right real estate Agent?

                  time is changing

                  as certification started in india by joint venture of government and private sectors like naredco,redco,acri enhance better brokarage quality.
                  Last edited July 28 2010, 05:58 AM.

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