Punta Cana is a laid back slice of paradise, a vibrant, multicultural and multilingual community filled with creative professionals, artists, vacationers, retirees, and families, enjoying spectacular beaches, fantastic views, and colorful nightlife.
Why wouldn’t want to live here? And there are plenty of people willing to ‘help’ you achieve your dream of living in an Island Paradise.
Beware, though, the real estate agent who promises too much.
Here are the 9 kinds of agent you should avoid:
The Poor Timekeeper
There is no excuse for tardiness among professionals. Business does not run on Island Time. Don’t bother dealing with the agent who always shows up late to viewings. A good REALTOR® will always be punctual and prepared to show you a listing properly.
The Uninformed Agent
If your agent seems fuzzy on tax laws and local real estate practices, get a new agent. Local knowledge of Punta Cana is essential. You need an agent who knows the local property market inside and out, and who is up to date on Dominican finance and tax laws. A local expert is better able to find you interested buyers because a local expert will know the true market value of your property.
The One Who Doesn’t Know Dominican Banking Laws
This can’t be stressed enough – Punta Cana has long been a cash-only market, and foreigners encounter difficulty obtaining loans and mortgages. However, several Dominican banks do offer financing options for foreigners, but many real estate agents in the area will often tell potential buyers to forget about applying for a loan.
This is because those agents don’t work with banks regularly, and are not equipped to give their clients the best advice. Make sure your agent is familiar and experienced with every aspect of Dominican bank laws.
The ‘Your House is Worth a Fortune’ Agent
You’ve met this type many times. They’re the agents who tell you what you want to hear when you’re selling your property – that it’s worth a fortune!
Get as far away from this agent as you can: pricing a home too high at the start often means it takes longer to sell, and ultimately sells for less. In many cases buyers won’t even look at it because the high price is ludicrous. The longer your property sits on the market, the more people are going to think there’s something wrong with it.
Before listing your property for sale, get listing presentations from at least three agents. You need to find out how they sold comparable properties to yours, what the prices were and how quickly they sold.
The Part-Time Agent
Is your agent working at the business full-time, or is this just something they do to supplement their income in the low season when there are no tourists around? You’d be amazed at the number of “real estate agents” who are also tour guides, restaurant managers, and surfing instructors.
Make sure your agent is a dedicated professional who watches the market daily, and who is always available to show you a property. If they say “sure, I can show you that condo just as soon as I close up the surf shop” you probably should consider another agent.
The High Commission Agent
Real estate commissions in Punta Cana are traditionally 5%. No respectable agency would think of charging more in an unregulated market.
The Dominican Republic is the Wild West of Real Estate. Practically anyone can hand out a business card that reads “Estate Agent”. Many of these cowboys don’t know the first thing about property, and will spend hours or even days chauffeuring clients around the island, looking at various properties in the hopes that one will be eye-catching enough to make a sale.
Your time is valuable – find an agent who respects it, and who knows wha they’re talking about when it comes to issues like condo fees and regulations.
The Bad Marketer
Listing and selling a property takes skill and experience, and a good agent will be focused on their web page, their social media platform and other online outlets, NOT in trying to dazzle you with their contacts in excursion businesses or property management companies. Many bad agents will tell you that they can find a buyer by way of Punta Cana’s tourism-related businesses; that’s probably because they own one of those businesses, not because they have your interests in mind.
Okay, crook may be a strong word, but Punta Cana has its share of unethical agents; people who will bend the rules as much as possible to make a sale. Some begin their presentation by bad-mouthing the competition. Some will tell you that you have to use their lawyer – many actually share offices with lawyers, and this is a clear case of conflict of interest.
Before you sign anything, interview several agents to find the professional who you are most comfortable dealing with.
Contact us today at (809) 552-0421 or email us at info@PuntaCanaLife.com