What should you expect?
The real estate agency segment is crowded many agencies do not offer a quality service. Take the time to get to know the agency and choose the right partner carefully.
Agenicies and agents in Croatia must be licensed, which is regulated by the Law on Real Estate Mediation
. Real estate agencies have many obligations arising from the Law, some of the main ones being: at least one of its employees has to be employed full time and must have passed the professional exam at the Croatian Chamber of Commerce; the agency must have adequate offices and be insured against liability; real estate agencies are obligated to check the documentation of all the listed properties. Check whether an agency is legal in the Register of Licensed Agencies and Intermediaries
, and don't collaborate with those you cannot find in it, as they are illegal. The license itself is not a guarantee of the real estate agency's expertise. Find out the professions of owners, directors and agents, as you should be collaborating with sales, marketing and negotiation experts. Enquire about how long the agency has existed, check its client list and references.
Licensed real estate agencies operate within a strictly defined legal framework, but high quality ones have the best market insight and knowledge of the trends shaping it. They will be able to give you informed advice, whether you are looking for or offering a flat, house or office, and the longer they exist, the more you will be able to rely on this advice. If you are a seller, a quality agency will give you a very precise and realistic market valuation which will yield a quick completion. If you are a buyer or prospective tenant, they will advise on attractive locations, yields and returns, thus helping you protect the largest investment you might ever make.
A quality real estate agency must be a marketing expert. The real estate agency's website is the primary channel through which it presents its offer, and those with attractive, user-friendly, resposive and optimised sites get more inquiries. Quality real estate agencies use Facebook and Instagram. The ad for each flat, house or business space is also important, as those which are well-composed, provide correct information and quality, but realistic, photos of the property are more noticeable. Don’t work with agencies that only advertise on search engines.
Quality real estate agencies are expert negotiatiors, whose goal is the completion to the benefit of all the parties invloved.
Real estate agencies have to understand laws which are not directly related to mediation, such as the Law on Property and Other Real Rights, the Law on Physical Planning and Construction, the Law on Land Registry, and the Law on Real Estate Sales Tax. The many legal components of each transaction could be overwhelming for an inexperienced agency, who could then provide the wrong advice, resulting in damages. Quality real estate agencies have legal teams or collaborate with lawyers who are experts in property law, so you can be sure that you have received reliable, but also specialised legal advice.
Owners should not waste time on marketing, presentations and viewings, and answering lots questions from buyers or tenants. A real estate agency also saves the owners time by filtering out frivolous inquiries and obtaining documentation. The agency saves buyers and tenants time by presenting only adequate flats, houses and offices, with clean documentation.