Selecting a credible real estate broker for buying a home is highly essential. References from friends and family and transparency in brokerage fee are some of the important factors based on which a broker must be finalised.
Buying a home is a once in a lifetime decision for most of the consumers. It is also one of the most crucial decisions where several factors need consideration like what type of a property fits your needs in terms of locality, size and budget. Along with this, it is also essential to pick a ‘clear title’. Most of the consumers rely on real estate brokers and thus, it is important to associate with a credible broker who can help you make the right buying decision.
In India, unlike many other countries, there is no particular degree for a real estate agents and the segment is unorganized. Experience along with the credibility is what matters the most. Only an experienced broker is equipped to understand your needs before recommending a home. He also has a network to showcase more options within your budget. Most consumers take an agent at face value and there is no legitimate alternative when any problem pops up. So what must one do to confirm a reliable real estate agent? Here are some options that you can look for -
1. Personal contacts: Friends and family are some of the best referees while searching for a real estate agent. A reference from those close to you gives an insightful direction towards such a diversified market. References from neighbors and colleagues can also be relied upon as they must have also gone out of their way to search for a home for themselves.
2. Experience: While searching for the best home, you have to have one of the best real estate brokers to point you to that brilliant choice. This is where experience comes into play. Those realty agents who work or have worked with real estate companies can consult you into purchasing your dream home. If possible, check with the local Chamber Of Commerce to find a trustworthy real estate agent in your area.
3. Licensing and education: Real estate agencies in India are not regulated and hence, it is easy for anyone to show up as a ‘Real Estate Agent’. In the beginning, there were no nationalized agencies regulating real estate agents, but this trend is changing fast. Qualified agents can get themselves registered with the ACRI (Association of Accredited Realtors of India), National Association of Realtors of India or other related agencies. This affiliation, licensing and education is not necessary in this business, but it does add a level of security.
4. Levies/charges: In some areas, real estate agents earn a commission from both buyers and sellers. In some cases, it is either the buyer or the seller who pays the commission. The average brokerage fee is 2 to 5 percent on the entire deal. You must select those brokers who are charging within the limit and are transparent in their transactions. In order to save on brokerage fee, you can purchase the property directly from a buyer. Many groups have such an arrangement where you don’t need to pay the brokerage fees.
While these are the major points basis which you must chose a real estate agent, there are other efficient ways to search a home. In the 21st century, internet is swarming with opportunities and ideas. There are a number of websites and apps such as 99acres.com which have numerous options of properties listed at one place and also save you from paying brokerage. Such websites behave like real estate agents and are highly reliable in comparison to those who meet face to face. These websites also have local offices and agents who can show you around the city and help you find dream home. It is a good idea to use these websites to elucidate local rates and projects.
Author's note: The author completed his MBA in Finance and Marketing in 2012 and founded the the Geopreneur Group at the young age of 24. He won the "Young Achiever Award" and the "Emerging Developer of the Year - Residential" at National Awards for Excellence in Real Estate & Infrastructure 2015.