5 Things a Real Estate Agent May Hide From You

real estate agentThe professional life of a real estate agent is one full of conflict. Financial success depends on closing deals, and yet they sometimes have to work against the idea itself because they are consultants before anything else. It thus turns out to be quite important that every such agent is guided by ethics.

Look at it this way: sometimes (and it may often be the case) the property in question is not a great one and a real estate agent must advise against buying it even if it hampers his monetary well-being. Ideally, what an agent does and what he ought to do should be one and the same thing, but do all agents really follow ethical practices to the letter? Let us find out 5 things which every real estate agent must tell you (and sadly, some of them don’t….at least not always).

1. You don’t have to buy a home larger than what you need

Truth be told, not too may real estate agents tell you that your home should not be a square metre larger than what you need. After all, the larger the home, the more they can make out of the deal. Also, large homes mean greater maintenance efforts, higher possibility of energy leaks, and more frequent repairs. In short, large homes could be a perfect recipe for headache for buyers. That’s why buyers need to know that they should buy homes that are concurrent with their needs (and not any larger).

2. You don’t have to change homes frequently

An agent hardly tells buyers that the best thing to do is to stay put. As an investor, you will be best served by buying constantly and expanding your portfolio but as a buyer, the lesser number of times you buy, the better you serve yourself. There is no denying this fact given the various costs associated with changing homes. Yet few, if any, real estate agents are going to tell you this because there is always that thing called direct conflict of interest.

3. You don’t have to sell your home privately

Selling a home “off market” can be a lucrative proposition and hence certain agents ask sellers not to list their homes. So, if your agent asks you to list your home privately, think twice before dealing with that professional.

4. The best-looking houses may not be the best deals

More often than not, the best looking houses turn out to be the worst pocket-drainers. To make matters worse, they are not very liquid (I know property is not a liquid asset). Put another way, real estate agents may present certain properties to you that are difficult to sell on a later day, but acting on behalf of sellers and with their pay packet depending directly on the sale itself, they often throw ethics out the window.

5. Agents must always be upfront with clients

A real estate agent’s first job is to be extremely upfront and not go soft just because a seller is emotionally attached to a property. Unless he does that, he is doing his job a disservice. Some sellers treat their homes like their own kids, and telling them they need to make necessary improvements to their home to make it more attractive to buyers is, in some ways, akin to telling them “your kid is ugly”. Nevertheless, agents need to be honest with their clients in this regard so they would do the improvements, or the chances of the home getting snapped up will not be that good.