Finding the best real estate agent for your needs: Part 1

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Finding the right agent can be tricky. Supplied

Choosing a real estate agency and agent is a major decision for any prospective home buyer or seller. Your choice of agent will impact the price you pay or receive for your home and determine the ease and speed of the process.

Therefore, it is important to have a relationship of trust with your agent.

With more than 100 legally registered real estate agencies throughout Cambodia, many more non-registered agencies and thousands of individuals who are self-professed “agents”, it can be difficult to know where to begin the process of finding a professional and suitable agent. Here are some tips to help you select the most suitable real estate agent in Cambodia for your needs, thanks to realestate.com.kh.

How to find a reliable real estate agent/agency:

One of the first factors you should consider is that the majority of these legally registered agencies are based in the key cities of Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville. This can make it difficult to find a professional real estate agency based outside these areas.

However, even within the cities themselves, there is an overwhelming amount of choice – and varying degrees of professionalism – so it is important to compare your options before making your choice.

The first place you might look at is the Cambodian Real Estate Agency Directory on Realestate.com.kh. Use this database to shortlist professional and trusted agents near you, after which you should interview the agent or agency (see our tips below).

If there are recommendations from former clients across blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other external publications online, this is a very good sign that the agent is reputable and trustworthy.

Key indicators of an agent/agency’s professionalism:

The following are key indicators that the agency or agent you are considering is committed to delivering a professional and efficient service to you.

Operating a trust fund: Trust funds are a great sign that the agency is serious about their business and protecting their client’s interests.

Works from an office: Agencies who have premises with multiple staff are usually legitimate and well established businesses.

Has a website/conducts marketing: Agencies which have websites, conduct newspaper advertising and generally have good paper-based marketing are normally serious businesses with a commitment to their profession.

Interviewing your prospective agent/agency

An interview of your prospective agent/agency should take place prior to committing to a representative. This will allow you to thoroughly investigate whether the agent is a good fit for you.

Here is a list of questions to ask the prospective agent during the initial meeting/real estate appraisal:

How many years has the company/person been involved in the real estate industry?

How many sales/rentals have they completed in the last year?

How many properties are now listed for sale/rent on their books?

How many prospective buyers/tenants are they currently in contact with?

What is their preliminary value estimate of your property listing in the current market, and what appraisal formula have they used to arrive at this figure?

What is their proposed marketing strategy for the property, for example online, newspaper, email database?

The answers that you receive from these questions will allow you to make a proper judgement about the prospective agent’s level of experience, professionalism and whether they can deliver the services you require when it comes to the future of your home.

Stay tuned for Part 2 next week, where we will discuss the actual decision making process and how to ascertain your chosen agent’s performance during the sale or rental process.

Ready to start your search for the perfect Cambodian real estate agent? Check out our Agency Directory now.

James Whitehead is Director of Content @ RealEstate.com.kh

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