Real estate agent’s commission: what is it for?

So you’re thinking about renting or buying a property in Kraków and it crossed your mind to use real estate agent’s services but you’re not sure what they will actually do for you. Some of your friends challenge you: why hire an agent, you can do it all by yourself. Why pay the commission? What is it for?

Read below to find out what your agent does for you in the process of renting or buying a property in order to understand their work and commission better.

Renting

The commission in this case covers the following services:

1. Understanding your needs

Understanding your needs. A real estate agent will ask you all the questions about your needs and preferences, so that they can find you a perfect place to live within your budget.

2. Time

If you work or you study you might not have enough time to search for flats on the internet. For the real estate agent –  it’s their job to do so! they can spend long hours searching for a place for you, calling the flat owners to find out about the flat availability and choosing only those that they will in the end want to show you, because they suit your needs the most.

3. Convenience

If you like the listings the agent sends to you, they will arrange the viewing and will accompany you while visiting the flat. It’s important especially if you don’t speak Polish. Any questions you might have regarding the place to rent – your real estate agent will answer immediately or will find out for you. They will also negotiate the price if necessary.

4. Paperwork

Once the property is chosen they will look out for you protecting your interest. They will prepare the paperwork, or if the property owner haas got his own contract – your agent will check and explain the contract for you so that you understand what you’re signing.

5. Reduce Risk

They will prepare inventory list to make sure your landlord will not be able to blame you for any damage to the flat that you haven’t caused and therefore you will not have a problem getting your deposit back.

Buying

A good real estate agent will:

1. Narrow search criteria

At the very beginning of the process a real estate agent will interview you about your budget, as well as your needs and preferences regarding your new property. This in order to determine your priorities and help you find a house or a flat of your dreams, and not just any property that will suit your needs.

2. Share knowledge

They will answer any questions you might have before, during or even after the transaction is finalised. They will explain to you the home-buying process and help you understand the property market.

3. Search for properties

This is time-saving, you no longer have to spend endless hours browsing through the internet in search for a perfect place to live. Your agent will do that for you and will only show you the offers that could be interesting to you. If you do not understand Polish, they will also provide a description of a property in English so you don’t need to worry about google translation quality.

4. Represent you

This includes arranging the viewings, accompanying you during the visits, taking care of all the communication between you and the owner of the property you want to buy (especially important if you’re an expat here). The real estate agent will do their best to protect your interest so you don’t sign up for something you will regret later.

5. Negotiate price

If applicable, they will negotiate the price for you.

6. Legalities

If you’re buying from a secondary market, they will check the legal status of the property you’re about to buy so that you don’t end up purchasing a house with unwanted tenants that you can’t get rid of, or will simply spare you any unpleasant surprises.

7. Administration

They will manage the administrative side of the transaction, they will go through all the paperwork with you to make sure nothing is overlooked, all clauses are read and understood, everything is filled in or signed and nothing needs to be resubmitted.

Now it’s up to you to decide whether you want to hire someone to do all of it for you, or you want to do it all by yourself!

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Basia Kubicka

Runs her own real estate agency Krakow Apartments. Passionate about helping people in all aspects of finding a perfect property, to buy or to rent. Occasional rope walker and rock climber. Follow Basia on Facebook.

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