I AM writing in response to Ms Kwok Yoke Pui’s letter on Tuesday, “Commissions and property agents”.
Ms Kwok said: “I would like to clarify that I am most willing to pay (the 1 per cent commission). The point is, I want to pay the agent who is representing me, not the seller’s agent.”
If this is so, perhaps Ms Kwok should appoint an agent and let the agent take her for viewings before deciding to view any unit. Commissions are agents’ income. If one buyer has to call 15 agents from different property firms for viewings before deciding to put in an offer, can you imagine how difficult it would be for an agent to close the sale and get his income?
Agents make it clear to buyers that they have to pay a commission before viewing. This is better than asking the buyer to pay after the sale has been concluded.
With regard to the bid for a condominium unit at $690,000, if the buyer gives only a verbal offer without any cheque, the seller is open to accept any offer with a cheque, even if it is lower than the verbal offer. Besides, there could be other factors that the seller considers in accepting a lower offer.
I sold my unit previously without engaging any agent. The first buyer offered $450,000, the second buyer offered $460,000, but he wanted me to declare $470,000 in the Sale and Purchase Agreement with a separate letter indicating the actual sale price. I rejected the higher offer.
My sister-in-law recently also sold her HDB flat without engaging an agent. The first buyer offered only $15,000 above valuation, while another buyer offered $18,000 above valuation. But my sister-in-law turned down the higher offer because the bidders looked unfriendly and spoke to her in a very commanding tone.
I think rules can be enforced by law, but ethics is individual.
Koh Siew Buay (Ms)
Source : Straits Times – 16 Oct 2009
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