Before I entered the world of real estate I was working as a Business Broker in the biggest Business Brokerage Company of the ASEAN region. I started a search in order to purchase a property for myself to live in, as I needed a place to stay, but as a ‘Farang’ (foreigner) I had no clue where to start. Because I was also busy I decided to hire a real estate agent to simplify my search and reach my goal. During my search for the perfect agent I asked myself the following questions many times: ‘How to find the best agent?’ and ‘who to trust?’- As they all wanted to be my friend in order to earn their commissions. That was my introduction to the Real Estate market. In that very moment I knew that I wanted to be that professional and reliable agent in the market to truly help people to find the right connection between property and buyer. I made a career switch.
My name is Kasper Roelvink and I am working as a Sales Manager in Pattaya. I have agreed to be writing this monthly column based on my own life and business experience I have here in Thailand.
In this first article I would like to go deeper into the question of “How to find the best agent?” As I’m now working in the business itself I see how important it is for people to have some kind of connection with their agent. After all, the purchase of a property is not something you do every day.
What are the important factors that distinguish a Good Agent?
First of all make sure the agent knows the market by asking him questions about different locations and prices, different neighborhoods or different developers. Pressure or challenge him, a good agent won’t be annoyed and shall happily answer your questions. When you get the right feeling and the agent proved to know the market you can now start discussing your demands. Be honest with him and help him to draw your profile. In case you are not comfortable with your agent and he didn’t listen to your inquiry -he starts showing you properties that will not match your demands- be straight forward to your agent and ask if there might be another person who can help you. Don’t forget, it is about your live savings which you spend on either your dream home or investment opportunity. It has to be right.
The second factor is the interaction with the agent. It’s not only about the sale and signing a contract, but mostly about creating a connection. My own experience tells me that spending more time with the client, such as talking about business or even having a lunch together, will help you both to understand the personality better. Knowing each other will help your search to find the right property. You can also share some ideas or opinions about the market, your future in the city –where are the nice restaurants and fun bars- and new trends etc.
Other aspects are ‘trust’ and ‘professionalism’. Make sure the agent does what he says. If he tells you he will answer within 24 hours, make sure he does it. If the agent tells you not to buy that property because of several reasons, listen to his advice but let him explain those reasons, as he tends to know market better than anybody else working there. Of course, every agent has his tricks, but overall you should know whether to trust him based on that bond you created while spending time together.
Last but not least is the reputation of the Company. There are plenty of agencies working in Pattaya, but there are only a few respected ones. Do your homework and use Google search, ask people around and read references. This will help you to get the general information. Regarding the agent; talk to him, listen to his advice, but also see what he does to satisfy his client. Additionally look if they are findable on the Internet? Do they express themselves? And most of all, do they have a valued Sales Manager. I will leave that to you!
Joe Lizzerd Pattaya Property Sale & Rent