Frequently Asked Questions
REAL ESTATE AGENTS & AGENCIES
In this section we answer some of the common questions about dealing with or engaging a qualified and experienced real estate agent.
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What is an Agent’s Representative?
An Agent’s Representative is a person who has been authorised by the Agent’s Licensing Board, after achieving the required educational requirements, to conduct real estate transactions on behalf of a real estate agent.
What are the services of real estate agents?
- Acting on behalf of a seller
- Acting on behalf of a buyer
- Acting on behalf of an owner.
The services of an agent acting on behalf of a seller may include:
- Inspecting the property
- Providing a market appraisal
- Researching comparative sales evidence
- Research the Certificate of Title and any documents relating to encumbrances
- Provision of a marketing plan that would consider the price, the most suitable type of promotion, the attributes of the property.
- Recommend ways to optimise the appeal of the property
- Recommend the most appropriate types of advertising
- Determine and research any existing tenancy arrangements
- Liaise with the occupiers to co-ordinate inspections
- Arrange suitable signable
- Arrange photography
- Design, produce, and lodge advertising and promotional material
- Promote the property to prospective purchasers
- Promote the property to other real estate agents
- Conduct Home Opens
- Maintain a register of inspections
- Provide reports on the level of buyer interest and market feedback
- Qualify prospective purchasers
- Recommend suitable level of deposit
- Determine any special conditions required by the seller
- Negotiations with prospective purchasers
- Prepare the Offer and Acceptance and draft any appropriate special conditions
- Present any written offers
- Explain the Contract for the Sale of Land by Offer and Acceptance and the Joint Form of General
- Conditions for the Sale of Land
- Receipt deposit to be held in the real estate agent trust account
- Explain the effect of any variations to the Contract that may be requested by the seller
What are the Duties of Real Estate and Business Agents under Common Law?
Under common law the duties of an agent include:
- To perform obligations under the agency contract and follow instructions
- To perform duties with due care and skill
- To act in good faith in the principal’s interest
- Not to divulge confidential information acquired in the course of the agency appointment
- To keep clients. moneys separate from the agent’s moneys and to account to the principal for moneys received or expended on the principal’s behalf.
Will Different Agents Quote Different Fees for the Same Type of Service?
Yes, because there is no limit on the maximum fee that you can agree. However, to compare the fees of various agents you need to compare the services that are being agreed. Your agent will discuss the range of services available to you, and suggest the most appropriate package to match your requirements.
How do I choose an Agent?
Prior to entering into a selling agency agreement it is important that you understand the level service that the agent will be providing for the agreed selling fee.
While it is reasonable to expect that sellers will be price sensitive it is very important to understand what you will be receiving for the agreed fee.
Ask questions about the marketing that will be undertaken, who will be conducting the promotion of the property- the agent you are dealing with or one of the team members, the frequency of home opens, the level of feedback from the agent.
It is also important to understand the agent’s view of the market price of the property and how that has been obtained. While a high price always sounds attractive, if the price is above market then the property is unlikely to sell and the marketing and promotion could be a waste of money.
Is there a cooling off period if I list a property with an agent?
No there is not any period of time in which you can change your mind after you have appointed the selling agent.
How do I Know that I am Receiving Value for Money for the Agreed Service?
Research on a national basis shows that more than 90% of sellers are more concerned with getting the right service from a professional, reputable agent than simply agreeing to the lowest price. Remember that with agent’s services- as with most things- you get what you pay for.
When is the agreed Fee paid to the Agent?
Where the service is the sale of a property or a business, then the agent’s selling fee is paid at settlement. Where settlement is defined as the legal entitlement to the property passing from the owner to the buyer, or upon the buyer taking possession of the property. Where the service relates to the management of property, the agreed fees are normally paid monthly.
What do I do if I am not happy with the fee that I have agreed?
Firstly, you should discuss your concerns with the real estate agent or sales representative. If you consider the behaviour of the agent in the process of agreeing to the fee has been unjust, you should probably seek independent legal advice or you may contact the Agent’s Licensing Board on 08 8999 1800 or REINT via email on on 08 8999 1800 or REINT via email on firstname.lastname@example.org.