What you should know before choosing a real estate agent

The professional specialized in buying and selling properties is the real estate agent. This can help you identify communities and properties within the style and budget that interests you, as well as guide you through the process of the mortgage transaction.

If at the time of buying or selling you decide to hire one to help you achieve your goal, it is important that you know more about your professional credentials and what it offers you before signing a contract. You should know the following:

Licenses and professional accreditations: In the United States, PR, many other parts of the world, a license is required to be able to practice. Ask to show it to you and if you have doubts, look for more information on the internet or in the entity that regulates the profession where you want to buy or sell.

This guarantees you that you have complied with the basic requirements, have the required knowledge where you practice your profession and that you are registered with a government entity with your personal and professional data.

Time working in real estate: Question when the profession began and how has been his career. He also knows what his goals are when working in that profession.

With this conversation you will have an idea of ​​your motivations, if you are a person only oriented to work for the money you represent as a customer, if you are focused on numbers only to have a greater production in sales or if you move it to help your clients achieve their goals. This is basic in this profession.

Experience in the community or city where you work: Knowing your market is one of the most important factors for a real estate agent, in this way you will have first-hand information about schools, places of purchase and lifestyles. You will also have data on prices, new communities and opportunities.

If you are specialized only in a specific community, it will be very difficult to recommend updated alternatives over another, unless you are a professional who cares about being always up to date in the industry trends.

Company or group with which you work: Do you belong to a company or have your own company? As it is called? Ask who is the highest authority in the place where he works. He also knows who replaces him or helps him in case he is not available. It is important to know who will be communicating with you and to whom you will be providing information.

Take into account that large companies have dozens of offices that operate independently, with an owner in each of them.

References: It is a good idea to call one of these professionals because you were referred by a friend or family member who had a good experience. This is not always possible, and sometimes you have to call by an advertisement or by the phone book.

Ask for references of your work, with names and phone numbers.

Type of contract offered: If you are selling your house, before signing a contract with a real estate agent, ask for its implications. Have him explain the type of contract, what the clauses mean, how long it is, level of exclusivity and what happens if you get the buyer.

Besides, this is the moment to agree on the commission. Remember that as a seller you pay the commission of the agent, unless by extraordinary circumstances it is agreed otherwise.

Marketing strategies: The sale of a house is not a factor of luck. It requires effort, discipline and promotion techniques. Ask each agent you interview how they will promote your home.

Your opinion of your property. If you are selling talk about your property, sales expectations in terms of time and price that you understand you should have. Ask her what she thinks and take into account, through her words and non-verbal language, how comfortable she can feel when selling your property. Are you used to handling such transactions? Evaluate it

If you are buying, tell the type of house you are looking for, the price and ask if you understand that you can find options within what you are looking for. Leave a window open to offer you other alternatives, but nobody better than you to know the property that meets their expectations and needs.

Which real estate agency to choose to sell properties

If you want to sell your flat, surely you have asked with what real estate to undertake? Getting a real estate agent that is good and reliable is a very important decision to succeed in selling your house or apartment.

Having a real estate agency capable of satisfying your needs regarding the property you are looking for is essential to succeed. The confidence of working with people who guide you professionally when dealing with real estate paperwork and who also has a good reputation guarantees a good result at the end of your investment.

How to get the best real estate agency?

Mainly you have to understand that not all real estate agencies are the same, since they do not offer the same services and do not work in the same way. This does not mean that you have to distrust them all. It is common for people to sell a property try to hang an ad on your balcony or publish the ad on a web portal, but soon you will realize that selling a home is not something so simple. These methods can last you for months and even years and do not generate any results.

You may want to buy, rent, or maybe you want to sell some property, because you have to keep in mind different keys to achieve it and put yourself in the hands of a real estate agency that meets in a good way with everything you need, that project great reliability and transparency, maintain a good communication and also that you value the confidence that you will be depositing in the professional in charge of the negotiation and of the conditions of sale.

Think about the experience of the real estate agency that you are going to choose, since it is synonymous with a qualified staff and real estate agents prepared, capable that give you maximum guarantees of success at the time of providing good advice and excellent advice on the market of the real estate sector.

Being well informed about the agency to which you intend to deliver your property is really a priority, mainly you have to inquire about their experience and their trajectory. This is a very indicative first step and shows you the seriousness of the company, as well as its commitment to customers.

Pay attention to the contracts that you sign, the real estate professionals will offer you the possibility of acquiring different types of contracts according to your possibilities and needs.

The use of new technologies

It is important to be aware of the cultural evolution represented by the digital era; there is currently a considerable increase in powerful techniques, as well as real estate marketing tools that serve to promote properties in a more interactive way with potential customers. It is important to determine if the real estate agency you plan to associate with knows how to work well with new technologies. This is essential to have greater chances of success and is a tip that drives your offer at the time of having to project and sell a home.

In short, when you look for an agency that meets your expectations, try to find highly trained and motivated teams that provide you with innovative tools to achieve your goals. In this way you will get more success in your business.

Who pays the commission to the Real Estate Agent

It is very common for people to ask themselves: Who pays the commission to the real estate agent? This is a very important part of the home buying or selling process, and most people are not clear about it. In order to understand who pays for those commissions, be it the seller or the buyer (or both), let’s look at how real estate agents are paid and how commissions are divided.

How do real estate commissions work?

  1. Real estate agents work for a broker.
  2. All fees and compensation paid to the real estate agent pass through the corridor.
  3. A real estate broker is the only person eligible to pay a real estate commission and sign a listing agreement with the potential seller.

How do brokers pay real estate agents?

The divisions will always vary. For example, agents who have been in the market for a short time can receive a commission of 30% -40 of the total commission received by the broker. And, of that amount, other fees may also be deducted (advertising, signage or other office expenses). On the other hand, those who are known as “top productive agents”, could receive 100% and instead pay the broker a desktop rate. The rest of the agents’ salary can be between that ranges.

The fees of listing agents or who put houses for sale

A very common type of listing agreement (between the seller and an agent) allows the broker’s agent to have an exclusive right over the marketing of the property. As the agent brings a buyer to the negotiation, the seller agrees to pay a commission to the broker for a specific amount of money, which is usually represented as a percentage of the sale price. This fee will be shared or divided between the listing broker and the broker that brings the buyer.

Co-agency divisions

Like life, the division of fees between the runners is not always fair or equal (50/50). It will always depend on the type of agreement made with the seller. For example, when there is a buyer’s market, the seller can ask the broker to provide the buyer’s broker with a higher percentage. But in a seller’s market, the buyer’s broker could receive less.

Be sure to ask about local prices, since the commission divisions will always vary, and many are locally based. In some parts of the country, it is very common for a listing agent to earn more than the buyer’s agent, for example.

Who really pays the Real Estate Commission?

It can be said that the buyer always pays the commission, because this sum is usually part of the sale price. If it were the case that the seller does not sign an agreement to pay commission, the sale price becomes instantly lower. This is always something that needs to be negotiated from the beginning and agreed between all parties.

Keep in mind: all real estate commissions are negotiable, but not all agents will negotiate. However, you should never decide on an agent based on the commission you are charging.

Why should you hire an experienced real estate agent

How much experience should the agents have?

Instead of asking how much experience an agent has, ask how many times the agent has renewed his real estate agent the licenses. In Georgia, for example, real estate licenses are issued for four years.

You have probably heard the adage that 10% of agents do 90% of the business. This is because the main producing agents are consistent and this consistency comes from experience. The minimum number of transactions that many brokers expect one agent to complete per year is ten, which is almost one per month. Not much by the standards of a superior producer, but adequate in most real estate circles.

Why do real estate agents leave?

The number one reason for real estate agents to leave the business is because they are not making enough money. The average salary of an agent in the United States is less than $ 35,000 per year. Subtract from that figure normal business expenses and taxes, and hopefully no one is trying to feed a family of four with what’s left over.

Although experts advise new agents to maintain between six and 12 months of salary in reserves, few accept that advice. Business seems to be very easy for those who look inside, but real estate is complicated, consuming time and the average person is typically ill-equipped to be a real estate agent.

Unfortunately, many do not realize until they have endured many months without a paycheck.

These are some of the skills that successful agents have that help them thrive in the real estate industry:

  • Organization
  • Time management
  • Communication
  • Technology
  • Patience to handle conflict resolutions
  • Marketing experience
  • Self-promotion
  • Projection of a departing personality

The benefits of experience

An experienced agent is one whose mistakes are new. Successful agents learn something new every year; while lower agents tend to repeat the mistakes of the past. The best agents treat each client as if their business depended on the client’s success, because it does so.

Experienced agents:

  • Offer solutions based on previous results
  • Anticipate problems before they occur
  • They enjoy solid reputations with other agents
  • They have practiced strong negotiation techniques
  • They have solid contacts with mortgage lenders, title companies, housing inspectors, appraisers, general contractors, pest inspectors
  • Understand the complexity of changing real estate markets
  • They provide crucial market statistics and data to customers
  • Professionally guide clients to close on time and without problems

Should you hire an agent that is family?

Family members are often careful not to offend each other. The agents that are related to you may not want to counter your opinions or ideas, even if it is in your best interest to do so. You may not feel comfortable demanding what you deserve, as you would with an agent who was not familiar.

The bottom line is that you may want to compare competitors and interview a real estate agent before making your final selection.

Win with Real Estate

If you are interested in starting a business that ensures you an excellent return, your option is real estate, as it represents a segment with products in constant demand and growth.

Properties have always been one of the best ways to earn income. This is because the investment is generally safe and the assets are hardly depreciated, on the contrary, they almost always increase their value.

Investment in real estate is profitable, you can earn money in the medium to long term and have tax advantages, such as the deduction of taxes for depreciation, and not having to pay taxes if the profit obtained from the sale of a property is used to buy a new real estate.

To start in this business you should know that there are four different ways to do it. Check what is your best option to start your business.

Real estate broker: this way you dedicate yourself to negotiate the purchase, sale and rent of land, houses, buildings or departments. Your function is to find clients to sell or rent the properties of someone who does not want, or does not have the skills to negotiate, earning a commission for this work, which is proportional to the value of the property.

In all countries there are associations of brokers that provide training and network of contacts for your success. This has the advantage that you can work independently, you do not need capital and you can generate excellent profits without relying on an agent’s office.

Investor: to work in this way you need good capital to be able to buy and sell properties. Generally, in this way you can take advantage of discounts on prices and offers of those who sell their homes or land and then buy and resell them for a higher price, so you get an almost immediate profit.

Real estate broker: this way you dedicate yourself to negotiate the purchase, sale and rent of land, houses, buildings or departments. Your function is to find clients to sell or rent the properties of someone who does not want, or does not have the skills to negotiate, earning a commission for this work, which is proportional to the value of the property.

In all countries there are associations of brokers that provide training and network of contacts for your success. This has the advantage that you can work independently, you do not need capital and you can generate excellent profits without relying on an agent’s office.

This modality often includes remodeling and improving the houses or apartments, in order to increase the sale price much more.

The developer: his work is similar to that of the investor, and refers to the people or companies that have the capacity to acquire large plots of land and then dismember them in smaller ones and sell them to clients of a more popular level.

The success of this modality lies in acquiring the lands at very low prices, urbanizing them and reselling them, obtaining great profits.

The builder: even though this type of business is more focused on construction, it is related to the real estate market since its main clients are investors who need their services for the construction of houses, offices or condos for sale or rent. The profits are derived from the construction of low-cost housing units.

How to buy a house – Part 1

Determine the financial situation

  1. Review your financial situation. You’re thinking about buying a house, your finances are going well … or not? Your work situation is at least stable enough? Maybe just you just find a good job and are somewhat hooked on emotion.
  2. Note that purchasing a property is a commitment that can last for many years. It is difficult to speak with certainty of the future, but try to estimate the income you have secured facing the near and medium term; add the amount of your savings to the equation.
  3. Taking into account existing payments. Although there is different credit schemes that allow contributions of your company or the extra support of a financial institution, take into account some figures. According to the consensus among specialists to undertake the adventure of acquiring assets it is advisable to have from the start with the liquidity to pay:
    • The initial deposit of between 10 and 30% of the total value of the property
    • The process of deeds, that is, the cost of putting the title of a property in your name, amounting to between 6 and 7% of its value
    • The commission of the relevant financial institution, which can amount to 2.7% of the amount requested, in case you think apply for credit. In addition, if so, your income should not be jeopardized by more than 30% loan repayment (20 to 25% is ideal). Especially if at all possible, avoid longer maturities to 15 years: true, fertilizers are more expensive, but you could save half a million pesos.


How to buy a house – Part 2

Compare the different methods of purchase

  1. Use an estate agent has an obvious advantage: the advice of experts in the field. A good agent can auxiliaries throughout the entire process: help in the diagnosis of your financial opportunities, explain the solemn and convoluted language of legal paperwork and save you the fatigue of visiting properties that do not match your needs.
    • Of course, all this has a cost. The commission of a real estate agency can vary between 4 and 10% of the total value of the property. And less than 4% commission is not necessarily a saving; it may signal an irregular agency.
  2. Make a direct deal. The direct treatment offers the charm of doing business face to face. If you have the ability to haggle, you can get a substantial discount, and even negotiate with goods which cannot rely otherwise as motor vehicles.
  3. Determines whether you can make a trade. Remember that the country is not unusual to see on the street or in newspapers signs like this: “I sell or change for car of the year”.
    • Of course, this kind of business increases the risk of dealing with scammers and deal with properties that have legal problems or debts in tax payments. If you’re faced with an owner who admits, it can be a factor of reduction.
    • In any case (after not tell anyone warned you), it is highly recommended that count on the appropriate legal advice. While negotiations between you and the seller may be hunky-dory, so that the sales contract is valid must be made before a notary public, and that’s definitely your lawyer field.


How to buy a house – Part 3

Apply for Credit

  1. Apply for credit that allows including in the operation bank loans or other loans. If the tips have given you have been generous lately, or your sales commissions have been on the rise, some programs let you include tab that kind of income, to increase the amount of credit you can receive.
    • The same interest rate of around 12% and the online portal offers a free workshop for you to decide what kind of credit is the best for you.
  2. Check if you can apply for credit. Now if you are a public sector worker, you can request a credit. According to the mode, you can get a credit of almost one million pesos as one of the beneficiaries of an annual sweepstakes or 100% of the money you have accumulated in the SAR (System Retirement Savings), without having to participate in the draw.
    • But remember that obtaining credit is not winning the lottery. In both cases, you have to design a payment schedule; however, you may not have to carry this responsibility alone.
  3. If you do not work in a formal business or a government body and also your resources are rather limited, it would be worth you to review if you qualify for a subsidy (National Fund Trust for Popular Housing), which grants through various programs (especially in rural areas) and requested at the offices of state or local government.
  4. Mortgage requests, if you do not get a government loan. This is an option is far less cumbersome than government loans.
    • It is true that their programs usually require their customers checking a higher income; also, banks are interested go to your history in the Credit Bureau.
    • The positive is that the interest rate you must pay can be much lower (in some cases up to 8.5%): one or two percentage points less can be tens or hundreds of thousands of pesos in total.
    • Also, according to the design of payment you choose, you can avoid too high a down payment; get a reduction in your monthly payment in times of low income or life insurance, sickness and even unemployment.
    • However, you should be very careful with marketing: a loan with CAT (Total Annual Cost), monthly payments and lower interest rates very likely means that during the first years of the loan not amortize capital. This means that your payments during that period are intended to cover the interest on what you paid the bank and not the loan itself.


How to buy a house – Part 4

Method 4 of 5: Find your future home

  1. Scours the perfect home. With a clear picture of your financial situation and once chosen a purchase method, it is time to choose a house.
  2. Scores and ranks the different elements that you’d find in the property you’re looking for. What is more important, the proximity to your work or space to grow your family? A garden provides a pleasant recreation area, but a space where your car left for safekeeping at night sleep will leave you calmer.
  3. Stick to your price range. Check properties through the newspaper, on the ground or through the lists of an agency, keep track of houses that you cannot or should not pay more than a distraction: it can also become too expensive.
  4. Note the area. Do not rush, even if you found the house meets your expectations.
    • In US it is common to find real bargains in disreputable neighborhoods: sometimes just a little research on the Internet to learn about the latest crimes around. And security is not the only factor: maybe the ground floor is very wide, but the nearest supermarket could be half an hour by car.
    • Do not be shy and if you have already visited some property, talk with neighbors to find out the data that you would any real estate agency.
    • Unfortunately, there are rare residential complexes that some builder or certain bureaucratic maneuvers have left with no or intermittent basic services, or defects in the structure because of very low quality materials.
    • To remedy this situation somewhat, since 2014 new housing developers offer quality coverage: a guarantee that it is insured for ten years against design flaws or waterproofing. Asked if the property that interests you has it.
  5. Find out about the future. You should buy a home in a place where gradually replaced condominiums homes on one level? On the other hand, maybe you’ve heard of the “gentrification”: the renewal and reconstruction of some buildings and dilapidated neighborhoods.
    • Buy a small property in a site that is experiencing this process, or will do so soon, it can be an excellent investment in the medium term, but it can also lead to a considerable increase in the cost of living and services. You also may find yourself in an environment very different from what you had planned dynamics.
  6. Re – evaluate your expectations. Sometimes perfection is something that is revealed to you during the search and includes factors that had not previously considered. In such cases, it is also prudent that do not cling irrationally to your initial requirements.


How to buy a house – Part 5

Method May 5: Buy the house

  1. Close the deal. You have found the house that convinces you. When signing, releasing the money and occupy the new property. But still you need to be aware of some aspects.
  2. Consult your attorney. This was mentioned above and is reiterated. He or she is the one who can tell you about the legal documents that are needed in a sales transaction and monitor are in order.
    • Some of them are the letter of intent (containing an offer by the buyer and terms of payment), the titration study (by which verified that the property is registered in the Public Registry of Property and Commerce) certificates encumbrance (which ensures, among other things, that the property is not at issue) and no debt prosecutor, as well as an official appraisal.
  3. Be sure to make property transactions before a notary public. The notary public is who is responsible for correctly identifying the property and attest that the documents of both parties are in order.
    • In an ideal world, the notary carry out these actions scrupulously and honestly; in the real world, it is no more than you or your lawyer will inform the holder of the notary’s office where the operation is performed.
  4. Ponders the type of sales contract or suits you best suits your circumstances. The transfer of property from seller to buyer is affected by this contract. A term contract with reservation of ownership will allow you to enjoy the property even if not yet have paid the full amount of the operation (of course, the title will remain with the seller until the debt iniquities).
    • If you are a foreigner, but you want to buy a property in US in one of the so-called “restricted areas” such as beaches, you can do so through a trust with a bank. Be very clear the total price you pay for the house, the time it takes to give it to you and under what conditions.
  5. Take into account that horrible word, the tax. In our country, at the time a real estate transaction, the buyer is required to pay a tax of 2% of the value of it. However, there are some exceptions, such as when a parent gives a property to his son asks if, by chance, your case can be seen in some of them.
    • Using hitch or initial deposit, which must be at least 10%, you can begin the process of legal acquisition. The remainder will be paid according to what they subscribe in the sales contract; normally it is made by signing the scriptures in front of the notary.
  6. Enjoy! You are the new owner!


  • If you do not have a regular lawyer, be careful when choosing one. Find out about the experience of your prospects and ask for references from them. Inquire among your acquaintances to see if they have someone you trust.
  • If you are applying for a bank loan, you should know your history in the Credit Bureau. You can do this (and seek advice to clean it up, if necessary) here.


  1. Note: If a bank loan, but the payment plan you no longer satisfies, US law allows you to transfer it to another bank.
  2. By law, notaries must notify the Financial Intelligence Unit when a real estate transaction goes from the 1.076 million dollars. Developers and estate agents are required to do the same for excess of 540,000 dollars amounts. This is a recent legal provision to prevent money laundering.
  3. You can have the money and maybe lured the idea of ​​taking in suitcases to close a deal, but still cannot use more than 540,000 dollars in cash to buy a house. US law requires that if the transaction amount exceeds this amount, the rest should be paid through a bank instrument such as a check or a transfer.