One of the most common mistakes I see people make when looking at Costa Rica real estate is dealing directly with a developer’s sales office. Many times a developments sales team will label themselves as “realtors” when in fact they are simply sales agents for the developer. They work for the developer, period. That often creates bias and conflict for buyers, as someone working for a developer is typically going to protect his/her interest and perhaps push certain listings over others. Developer sales staff are also going to always paint the perfect picture and often not disclose some of the negatives that could be associated with the project. Any sales staff for any development in Costa Rica collaborates with a reputable realtor. By having an outside realtor provide you with buyer representation does not cost you anymore as commissions are simply shared between him/her and the developers sales office. Maybe there are re-sales at a lower price, maybe there is an upcoming assessment, maybe there is a similar project that is simply better, a realtor working for YOU will help answer all of this.
Working for Themselves
In Costa Rica there are many realtors who simply look out for themselves and soley promote their own listings so they don’t have to co-broke and share commission with another office. If you are searching for real estate in Costa Rica your realtor should be collaborating with other realtors and to show you other listings. If you go look at 10 properties and all of them are the agent’s own listings, then you should probably start to wonder. It is important to note however, in some of the more isolated areas of Costa Rica where offices are limited it would not be uncommon for one realtor to control a majority of the listings.
Long Term Commitment
Does your realtor have residency in Costa Rica? I would not suggest buying real estate from someone who is simply here as a tourist. Those who are committed to living here and staying in Costa Rica are who I would suggest working with. It’s also an important part of you having assistance after the sale. I have clients who I assist with favors years after they purchased, a realtor living here fulltime is a great resource for buyers after the sale.
Honest Feedback and Info
If you don’t feel comfortable being honest and upfront with your realtor about your thoughts, your finances and other personal info, then you aren’t dealing with the right person.
If you are looking at real estate in Costa Rica feel free to let me know how I can assist you more. Call me anytime direct at 707.962.4482 or in Costa Rica at 8718.7216