In today’s world, with so much information online, people are empowered to perform services for themselves that they couldn’t a couple of years ago. You can probably find a YouTube tutorial that teaches you how to fix your computer, decorate a cake and even buy a home.
So why do you still need a real estate agent when looking to buy or sell property?
1. Save you time:
You probably have a full time job, and searching for or selling a house is a side activity. Whereas, your real estate agent’s job is finding you or selling your property.
This means they do all the hard work, including, communicating with buyers and sellers, asking them questions, comparing prices for you, scheduling viewing appointments etc. While, you get to enjoy the fun parts – looking at homes and deciding which ones you like.
2. Extensive market knowledge:
Though you can go to online sites like ZoomTanzania and figure out the average selling prices of homes in different neighborhoods, nothing beats the knowledge of a well trained and experienced real estate agent. Moreover, not all neighborhoods are well represented in online classifieds, so it may be harder to calculate the market price of houses in Kinondoni (as they tend to advertise less), compared to houses in Mikocheni.
Luckily, a real estate agent will have a database of a lot more homes, in a lot more neighborhoods. More so, they can tell you why the prices are higher in one neighborhood than another. And if the prices will continue to raise or fall due to new developments and changes in the neighborhood. The reasoning behind the numbers will be invaluable to you when making a decision about buying, renting or selling.
3. Negotiate in your favor:
While many Tanzanians are used to bargaining about everything from the price of tomatoes to the validity of parking tickets, negotiating the cost of property is more than just about the price itself.
A seasoned real estate agent will know how to negotiate not only price, but other benefits like electricity and water bills (for renters), moving expenses, parking, security, repair costs – you name it.
Though people looking to buy a house should carefully select a real estate agent, so that they don’t negotiate a price that benefits their commission more than your budget.
4. Protect you legally:
One of the biggest risks of dealing with property without professional help – especially in Tanzania – is exposing yourself to scams.
We’ve all heard a story or experienced a situation whereby someone (or ourselves) were sold land that belonged to someone else, was public property or not buildable.
Beyond reducing the risk of you getting cheated, real estate agents will help you prepare all documentation related to purchasing and selling property, paying taxes, inspections, reading a lease etc. This is a blessing, as nothing can be more daunting then reading legal documents.
5. They value what you care about
Whether it’s a pool, veranda or garden, most of us have specific things that we are looking for when we want to buy a place. A real estate agent can find you multiple options of what you are looking for – as long as your desires and price range match reasonably.
At the end of the day a good real estate agent cares about you, and will do what it takes (whether it’s spending money on marketing and advertising your property, or negotiating prices) to get you the best deal possible.
It’s all in the details.
While you may fall in love with a house instantly, your real estate agent will be paying attention to details that matter. Is the paint cracking? Is there rust? what are the acoustics of the place? All of these things can transform your dream home into a nightmare.
So, while you can definitely find property all by yourself, having an expert by your side will make the process simpler and the results greater.