Avoid These Blind Spots: Questions Buyers, Sellers and Renters Must Ask Before Signing the Dotted Line

You’ve heard it all before: buying, selling and renting a home is an exciting experience. Not only is there the thrill of the hunt and catch but also the excitement of the deal.

However, not all Real Estate Agents are equal. Working with a credible Estate Agent with deep industry knowledge and experience coupled with an extensive professional network, excellent communication and negotiating skills and a marketing division ensures your property sells at top dollar or that you buy and rent for the best price in the market.

As one of the leading Real Estate Companies in South Africa—with a national footprint, Tyson Properties understand that buying a home is a significant investment. Renting a house or apartment is exciting, and selling a property is a milestone investment opportunity.

We also recognise that buyers, sellers, and renters often overlook many blind spots before signing the dotted line—and end up making poor and costly decisions. Whether you’re a seller, buyer or renter, here are the most important questions to ask your agent and tips to follow that will empower you, ensuring you get your money’s worth.

Sellers: How will you market my property?

The more appealing a home, the higher price it may fetch. Sellers always ask Agents for advice on how to increase property value with interior and exterior upgrades, and they get the best advice. Yet sellers often overlook an essential part of selling a property—marketing. Today, Real Estate competition is fierce, and property for sale needs more than a few improvements to reach top dollar. Sellers need Agents with a more thoughtful marketing approach.

To set your property apart from the rest and deliver the best results and returns possible, choose an expert Estate Agent proficient in drawing on tailored marketing plans that combine a sophisticated blend of marketing technologies and streamlined processes.

While Instagram, Facebook and Twitter make it easy for sellers to go local, the best Estate Agents remedy sales fatigue by thinking outside the box with SEO, staged show days, email marketing, video marketing, and paid advertising with professional photography.

Buyers: Do you recommend a home inspection?

In Real Estate Sales, what you see isn’t what you always get. Estate Agents stage houses well, accentuating the best and hiding the worst, with buyers only noticing freshly painted walls, oval spa bath, marble kitchen countertops, exotic hardwood flooring, and the wooden pergola, and swing with the outside kitchen. They do not see cracks and leaks, mould on walls and in cupboards, ancient plumbing and wiring and clay soil and diseased trees in the backyard. That is why home inspections are critical.

A home inspection is an essential move in the home-buying process. It protects you, your bank account, and several surprises your agent forgot to mention. Inspectors evaluate structural integrity and plumbing like the property foundation, rusting pipes and geysers, electric fencing, and all necessary maintenance and repairs that affect living standards and quality of life.

Once you have a breakdown of the inspection report—which you as the buyer will pay for, you can renegotiate, fix the problems at your own cost after the sale, or walk away from the deal knowing you just dodged a bullet.

Renters: Is there anything else I should know about the property?

As empty-nesters downsize, middle-class families cut back on living expenses, millennial chooses work opportunities and travel over long leases and bonds, and properties sit empty after the 2018 Airbnb accommodation investment rush—rentals are once again a trend. However, similar to sellers and buyers, renters must ask questions before they sign the dotted line.

For instance, question what the rental rate includes—like utilities and amenities. Who do you call in an emergency, and who pays if something breaks? Do the fittings work, and is their mould? Besides the above, ask if there is anything you should know about the property before signing the lease, like a violent crime, problematic neighbours, unsafe parking, previous fire or water damage, or anything that could negatively affect your living standards.

In Real Estate, knowledge is power, and asking the right questions could save you hundreds of thousands of rands in damages or lawsuits. Besides doing your due diligence and questioning the agreement, neighbourhood safety and property maintenance, ensure you ask questions about the properties interior and exterior. Dig deep and get answers as the more knowledgeable you are, the better decision you will make.