SINGAPORE - 8 out of 10 consumers expressed that they were satisfied with the service from their real estate agents.
This was one of the findings of a survey on public perceptions on the real estate agency industry, conducted by the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA).
The survey aimed to determine the level of awareness and satisfaction among consumers towards the industry, and hopes to set a baseline to measure the industry's progress in delivering service.
It found out that 87 per cent of potential and actual homebuyers and sellers were satisfied with their real estate agents' services. But when compared with consumers in the rental market, this number fell to 75 per cent.
The areas in which consumers were most satisfied was service. They expressed that their agents always gave them a copy of signed documents, were contactable and responsive, as well as courteous.
National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said in his blog this showed that the watchdog has not 'fared too badly', for what used to be regarded as a 'cowboy' industry. However, he noted that there was still room for improvement.
Satisfaction levels fell when it came to financial knowledge and expertise about properties' transactions, accuracy and up-to-date information on the property and the property market, and timeliness in informing buyers and sellers about transactions related to their properties.
They are also less aware that real estate agents must be registered with CEA, or that they can use prescribed Estate Agency Agreements to protect their interests in a property transaction.
However, they did know that real estate agents must inform sellers or landlords of all offers on their properties, as well as seek owners’ consent before advertising, and that the agents should not be associated with moneylending activities.
The survey also covered the Key Executive Officers and salespersons. Many of them found that CEA’s regulatory measures were effective in raising professionalism in the industry.
Mr Khaw said this was a good start for the two-year-old watchdog, but as the real estate industry is a dynamic one, salespersons would need to embrace continuous learning to stay relevant and bring value to their clients.
The survey involved 2,260 consumers and potential consumers between March and July 2012.