Agent fee : who is right, me or my hubby?

Discuss about where to live, renting a property, tenancy issues, property trend and property investment in Singapore.
Post Reply
x9200
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9856
Joined: Mon, 07 Sep 2009 4:06 pm
Location: Singapore

Post by x9200 » Fri, 10 Feb 2012 5:24 pm

True the 2500/3000 "rule" has no legal base. It is more like a standard practice. Not true that this practice is not around any more. It's happily blooming. Is it illegal? I don't think so. What is illegal is double representation. Here the agent is paid by one party and represents the same or the other party, not both parties at the same time.

Singapore Property Search

 

beppi
Manager
Manager
Posts: 1752
Joined: Thu, 07 Sep 2006 11:15 am
Location: Ahlongistan (O$P$)

Post by beppi » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 2:15 am

The new agents' law is very clear in saying that the one who engaged the agent pays. This does not depend on the rent level or its changes due to negotiations. Thus the previously common 2500/3000-threshold is now illegal!
Of course some agents, being generally not the wittiest, still try their luck. And some tenants, probably also not the wittiest, seem to still pay.

x9200
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9856
Joined: Mon, 07 Sep 2009 4:06 pm
Location: Singapore

Post by x9200 » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 7:34 am

beppi wrote:The new agents' law is very clear in saying that the one who engaged the agent pays. This does not depend on the rent level or its changes due to negotiations. Thus the previously common 2500/3000-threshold is now illegal!
Could you please quote the relevant law?

beppi
Manager
Manager
Posts: 1752
Joined: Thu, 07 Sep 2006 11:15 am
Location: Ahlongistan (O$P$)

Post by beppi » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 3:14 pm

Look for "Estate Agents Act" on a government portal or cea.org.sg
It has also been posted on this forum before. I am too lazy to look for the link for you.

x9200
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9856
Joined: Mon, 07 Sep 2009 4:06 pm
Location: Singapore

Post by x9200 » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 5:13 pm

Oh, too lazy. I see. I think you should check this for yourself, not me.

beppi
Manager
Manager
Posts: 1752
Joined: Thu, 07 Sep 2006 11:15 am
Location: Ahlongistan (O$P$)

Post by beppi » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 8:46 pm

Why? I read the act in full and I don' have (never had) problems with agents.

User avatar
sundaymorningstaple
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 39549
Joined: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 1:26 pm
Answers: 10
Location: Retired on the Little Red Dot

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 10:54 pm

Actually, you could read the act till the cows come home and you won't find it in there because it's not......... :-|

However, on the CEA site ........

http://www.cea.gov.sg/cea/content/resou ... qInfo.html

Q28. Will CEA regulate the commission rates under the new regulatory framework?
A28. CEA will not fix the commission rates charged by salespersons as the absence of commission guidelines would lead to a more competitive pricing among the estate agents. Consumers are advised to find out the different commission rates and they can negotiate the commission rate before engaging an estate agent.
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

beppi
Manager
Manager
Posts: 1752
Joined: Thu, 07 Sep 2006 11:15 am
Location: Ahlongistan (O$P$)

Post by beppi » Sat, 11 Feb 2012 11:30 pm

My understanding was that we're talking about the legality of a rental threshold above/below which the one or the other party pays.
The height of such a threshold (if it were legal) is of course unregulated.
But the fact that the party who engages the agent in the first place (and only that party) pays a fee makes arrangements where fee payment falls on the other under certain circumstances (e.g. rental level) impossible.
The act specifically mentions that an agent can only advertise a property if engaged for that by the owner (and thus the owner pays the fee). This rule does not depend on rental level, thus saying below X the tenant pays an agent fee is illegal.

User avatar
sundaymorningstaple
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 39549
Joined: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 1:26 pm
Answers: 10
Location: Retired on the Little Red Dot

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 12 Feb 2012 12:33 am

As there is no fixed commission rates, then whether they are legal above/below is moot as there isn't a legal requirement to charge any commission at all other that what is negotiated. Therefore, if an agent and a LL or tenant, negotiate an agreement with an upper & lower threshold, then it's legal in the eyes of that contract only.
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

x9200
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9856
Joined: Mon, 07 Sep 2009 4:06 pm
Location: Singapore

Post by x9200 » Sun, 12 Feb 2012 9:13 am

beppi wrote:Why? I read the act in full and I don' have (never had) problems with agents.
Because in this discussion you made a claim that you can not back with any solid evidence. Although I understand where you coming from you should also realize that not everybody falls into category below of the said 2.5-3k threshold and for the above it is often beneficial to use the "old rule".

To make something illegal it necessary to make it directly illegal under the law so saying that the client should pay the agent does not make it illegal for the agent to receive the payment from some other party. This is explicitly handled in the 1st Schedule where you could find the following:

(e) subject to any written law, estate agents and salespersons must not directly
or indirectly accept any fee, reward, commission, rebate or other payment
for the referral of any services rendered or to be rendered by third parties
to the client or any other party, in connection with a transaction involving
the client, without the express knowledge and prior consent in writing of
the client.


Fees, as pointed out by SMS are free to be agreed between the parties but If you read the act you can also find some references pointing to the situation where the agents are not paid at all and such cases are not treated as anything special.

So to sum this up, there is a condition to make the "old rule" formally legal and that's it. Nothing illegal in the whole procedure.

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “Property Talk, Housing & Rental”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests