The Art of Engaging a Property Agent

Find out how you can engage a property agent for your property transaction in just 4 steps.

1. Lay a solid foundation

Ensure your property agent is registered with the Council for Estate Agencies

In Singapore, all property agents are required to be registered with the CEA through a licensed property agency. Each registered property agent is assigned a unique CEA registration number, e.g., R123456A.

You can verify the identity of your property agent by checking against CEA'ss Public Register. If the search does not return a property agent'ss profile page, it indicates that the phone number is not registered with CEA and it is likely a scam.

It is an offence for any individual to carry out estate agency work without valid registration.

2. Seed trust

Negotiate the commission amount with your property agent and honour it after completing the property transaction.

The commission rates for property transactions are determined by market forces and are negotiable between the parties involved. There are no fixed commission rates, minimum or maximum percentages, nor “standard market rate”. CEA does not regulate the commission rates or provide commission guidelines.

You are free to negotiate the amount and components of the fees and expenses, as well as terms, before engaging a property agent.

You should also check if GST is payable. Only GST-registered property agencies can charge and collect GST.

After completing the transaction, you should directly pay the commission to the property agency, and not to the agent.

3. Nurture good habits

Ensure your agent only represents you in a property transaction.

Dual representation is not allowed in all types of property transactions. This means that your property agent cannot be appointed by both seller/landlord and buyer/tenant for the same transaction.

Your property agent should also conduct the necessary checks for the transaction.

4. Cultivate responsibility

Sign two important documents

  1. CEA’s prescribed estate agency agreements

    An estate agency agreement is a binding contract to protect your interests and the property agency’s. The agreement stipulates the property agency’s duties, the agreed commission rate, and requires the appointed property agent to declare any conflict of interest.

    You should use the agreements for the sale, purchase, and lease of residential properties in Singapore and sign the document with the property agency before your property agent starts work.

  2. Customer’s Particulars Form

    Once you have decided to engage a property agent, you will need to fill in and sign a Customer's Particulars Form, which can be found in the Guide on Estate Agents (Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism) Regulations 2021 (PDF, 1.03MB). This mandatory form mitigates the risk of money laundering and counter terrorism financing in Singapore.

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