Tag Archives: legal fees

FSBO vs Sale by Agent..(For Sale by Agent)


By Rhea-Simone Auguste

©MoonLight Rental Ltd.

If you are thinking about selling your property, it may be a tempting idea to bypass use of an agency and sell your home solo. In fact, there are many For Sale By Owner {FSBO) properties on the market. However, the reality is if you lack the experience needed to close a real estate sale – your property may end up stuck on the market for months with no real offers. It may seem pricey but having an agent especially during a buyer’s market can make the difference between “For Sale” and “Sold”.

A good agent can help weed out the curious callers

FSBO sellers may have to sift through hundreds of calls – some from curious buyers who cannot afford your asking price, others from your neighbours who may want to know what improvements you’ve made so they can match their property price to yours.  A seasoned agent can easily identify these calls and can sift through the leads to find you more qualified buyers. Instead of a hundred people coming to your house to view without even making an offer, an agent may narrow the traffic so only genuinely interested buyers make it inside your home.

A good agent networks with other good agents

A good agent usually has strong networking skills and inside their network, they would have a list of agents they work alongside in their company and in other real estate companies.  Agents usually have ready clients interested in purchasing property in specific areas. If your area is on a wanted list, your buyer may come from your agent or another agent’s network.

Your agent absorbs the advertising costs

This one is a big factor and a lot of people don’t realize this. The average FSBO sellers in Trinidad and Tobago may have to spend a small fortune on advertising their property using typical print media. While this may be an effective solution for some FSBO sellers, many end up with a big bill and no real buyers. An agent absorbs the cost of all advertising for your property. It is in their interest to make sure your property is marketed attractively not just in print but now online and if necessary, on TV as well.  Advertising is expensive so when you factor in how much your agent will be paid from the sale of the property, bear in mind they may have spent as much as 35% of their commission in ads for your property.

Your agent handles viewings so you don’t have to interface with buyers

Buyers come armed with lots of questions ranging from practical to perplexing. An agent helps streamline the question process to ensure the focus remains on the value of the property being sold. A professional agent will know how to subdue the fears of a prospective buyer, assuring the buyer of the true property strengths and its key selling points. They know not to make the sale too personal or reveal private information about the sellers. Some FSBO sellers reveal too much when interfacing with clients eg. “I got my cousin to do the kitchen cupboards and he didn’t charge me much,” or “We have to sell this place fast because my wife and I are divorcing and she wants the cash now,” (both real examples, by the way).  In doing so, they may unwittingly open themselves to having to negotiate well beneath their original asking price.

Your agent will have the legal forms and paperwork hassle

Getting a property sold requires lots of paperwork. Purchase agreements must be made and banks require a lot of documents from sellers. Instead of having to drop documents to the bank for the buyer and pay legal fees for drafting purchase agreements, a seller using an agent can relax knowing their agent will handle the follow-up with the buyer to ensure a successful close.

To some, the process of selling a property may seem simple.  In reality, it is a challenging task especially when it is a buyer’s market or when the economy is stagnant. Having an agent handle the toughest parts means you get to focus on the most important parts of the process.

The Eternal Question Should I Rent, Or Should I Buy??

The Eternal Question Should I Rent, Or Should I Buy??

MAY 2012

Every professional has asked themselves this. Such a simple question if not answered correctly can make headaches appear and salaries disappear. Thankfully your reliable Real Estate Agents at Terra Caribbean are here to make this decision easier. In the upcoming paragraphs I will discuss the pros and cons of renting and buying, the costs, unseen cost and other factors that must be considered when making this important decision.

Let us look at buying first. Apart from the price there are other costs that people do not realize until they have to pay. The First payment is the down payment which is usually 10 % of the price of the house. Paying this secures your purchase and lets the vendor know that you are serious about buying.

Other costs to consider are the furniture, valuation cost, legal fees, negotiations fees, stamp duties and mortgage fees. It is also important to look into a variety of mortgage packages and to study which package will suit you best.

Besides the costs there are other details one should think about before buying. What is your financial status? If you are a young professional now starting out, then renting may be more appropriate in this time. What are your family plans? Your home must be able to suit the size and needs of your family. How is your social life? Your home needs to be able to accommodate guests comfortably. Last but not least, do you have or plan on having children or keeping pets? Then extra Room must be allocated for them, as they will form an integral part of your family.

If you do decide on buying the benefits are numerous. There is a personal satisfaction and pride of ownership. The security that you feel when you own a home is one of the most comforting feelings you can give yourself. When you move into a neighborhood you become part of a community, this gives you and your family the opportunity to build relationships with your neighbors and form life long friendships. You can also use your home as collateral and stand a better chance of borrowing money down the road.

Renting is a bit less complicated than Buying. It is simple and attractive for people who are just looking for something temporary. The cost usually includes the first month’s rent and security deposit. Renters enjoy the befits of flexible living with the option of relocating easily.They also have less overheads and less responsibility while still having a place to call their own. However they do have to obey the terms of the rental agreement, and most tenants may be subject to increases in rent every couple of years.

For new couples renting may be a first step, a trial run before they decide on buying a home together. Singles might prefer to rent a property because they don’t need all the space that a home will offer. One of the best benefits of renting is that most physical problems you may encounter your landlord will usually fix or pay to fix.

I hope the information provided will aid you in making your decision. You should remember that if you are living somewhere that does not meet all your needs nothing is holding you back from moving to another better location. If you are interested in making the transition from renter to home owner or owner to renter Please contact any Real Estate Agent at Terra Caribbean. Our agents are ready and waiting to assist you in anyway we can.

Best of luck,

David McCartney

Submitted by Terra Caribbean