Tag Archives: Buyer

Things you should know about property agents

For many of us, our homes is the single most expensive investment we will ever make in our lives. In fact, since we already have or will be spending a huge fortunate on housing, you would expect a certain level of knowledge or wisdom in this matter. Most of us choose the easiest way out and entrust our property agents to do all the work for us.

Though most property agents are professional and skilled in their trade, as smart property seekers and owners, we need to be able to separate fact from the fiction. Hence, we have gathered common beliefs regarding property agents, and like a good detective, we are on a mission to find out the truths behind these common beliefs.

Common belief #1: It is compulsory to have an agent to represent me in buying or selling properties in the open market

False…but depends on the time and effort you are willing to put in

In Singapore, you are absolutely free to decide whether you want to handle the buying or selling of property on your own, or to engage the services of a property agent.

That being said, unless you are confident and savvy with the paperwork required for property transactions, you will probably be much better off paying the agents to do it for you, saving you the hassle and precious time.

Furthermore, if you are a seller, the whole process of marketing your property and finding prospects to view your house might seem a little daunting. Hence, by engaging a professional, not only will you be spared with the many sales calls made by agents trying to represent you, you could also enjoy the peace of mind knowing that all the paperwork is being done up nicely and in accordance with the ever-changing government regulations.

Common belief #2: An agent recommended by a family member or friend is definitely more trustworthy.

We all love a good recommendation as it saves us the trouble of searching high and low for one on our own. However, in determining whether a recommended agent is trustworthy, you will have to find out why the agent is being recommended in the first place. Is he being recommended because he is a close friend of your relatives/friends or has he been representing your relatives/friends in their last purchase?

Do not simply take for granted that since the agent is a good friend of your relatives/friends, he will be the best agent for you. Find out more on the agent’s credentials, track records and how long he has been in the industry before jumping to any conclusion.

Most importantly, remember to check that your agent is registered with the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) via the CEA Public Register or CEA@SG mobile app. This will ensure that he has the necessary knowledge to provide you with professional services and to adhere to ethical practices.

Article contributed by Praise Poh

Weak demand for resale property to continue

Singapore saw a sharp decline in residential resale volumes across all segments in the first quarter of 2013, according to a DTZ report.

The quarterly and year-on-year drop is a “stark contrast” to 2012, when resale deals rebounded following the introduction of the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD).

“The recovery in resale volume last year was due to buyers finding better value in the resale market after some projects in the primary market set benchmark prices. In comparison, developers were more competitive in their pricing strategies this year and the latest round of cooling measures in January 2013 were more comprehensive than that in December 2011. The mismatch in the expectations between buyers and sellers could also have contributed to the weak resale volume,” said DTZ.

In terms of buyer profiles, foreigners accounted for 9.9 percent of all transactions in Q1 this year, up from an average of 6.4 percent in 2012.

However, demand from local buyers fell as they are now required to pay ABSD for their second and subsequent properties.

“Buying behaviour varied among non-Singaporean groups in the resale market. Firstly, purchases by USA nationals remained resilient, especially so in the high-end segment, as they are not subject to the 15 percent ABSD for foreigners. Transactions by Indonesian buyers in the high-end segment however fell. In comparison, demand from mainland Chinese buyers held up well across most price segments, except for those costing below S$1 million.”

Moving forward, DTZ expects the resale market to underperform as there are no discounts being offered unlike in the primary market. Buyer activity is also expected to be lower due to higher stamp duties, weaker rental growth and stricter financing regulations.

Source – PropGuru – 22 May 2013