Puzzle Finance Blog

We reveal what agents don’t want you to know

 EVERY industry has its tricks of the trade, from how to snare clients and how to get top dollar, the real estate industry is no different.

Sydney-based buyers’ agent Josh Masters reveals what some of those secrets are that your agent might not necessarily want to you know.

Your house is probably not worth what you think it is.

Mr Masters said that is often the case but the agent won’t break the news to you until they’ve signed you.

“Typically owners have a lot of emotion tied to their home and often over-estimate the value,’’ he says.


The more the agent says your home is worth, the more likely you’ll sign with them.

Most agents understand this and play to it, but it may be unlikely that they can achieve that figure. Mr Masters says some agents will then condition the vendor back down at a later date to meet the market.

By law the agent has a duty of care to prospective buyers to alert them to any major issues.

“If you see something at the property or in the contract or due diligence and make them aware of it then they should also be telling the other interested buyers which may help push the price down,’’ he says.

• They must take all written offers to the vendor

“Don’t feel like you’re getting heard? Put it in writing and the agent has no choice. This can also help if you’re submitting a very low offer and need to make the vendor aware that the property isn’t worth what they think.’’ 

• Commissions are negotiable.

Remember though you get what you pay for.

• It takes about 2 days to be granted a certificate of registration to be allowed to sell real estate.

This makes it important to ask for proof of past sales and experience.

Real estate agents aren’t licensed to provide investment advice.

There is no point taking on their advice that it would make a “great investment” when they may struggle to know even the most basic information about the growth in the area and how the cash flow may affect your personal finances. 

Mr Masters says most buyers are only in the market a couple of times within their lifetime, so it can be hard to learn everything you need to know when buying or selling a house.

“A lot of buyers’ decisions are based on family’s or friend’s comments that they had heard probably around the barbecue,’’ he says.

Despite buying a property being one of the biggest financial decisions most people make in their life, Mr Masters says many still choose to DIY it, and not seek expert advice like they would if investing in a business or something else worth that much money.

“Everyone thinks they are an expert because they live in a household,’’ he says.

Mr Masters says one of the biggest things he saw property investors get caught up on was the little things.

He says they will be buying an investment property and get hung up about spending a couple of hundreds dollars fixing a minor issue that comes up in the building inspection rather than think about the long term investment of the property.

“They should be looking at how it is going to perform over the next five years,’’ he says.

Posted by News Limited Network on 22nd May, 2014 | Comments | Trackbacks

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