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Finance House Malaysia Malaysian Property Realtor

Beware of fraudsters impersonating PR1MA sales agents

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Perbadanan PR1MA Malaysia (PR1MA) advises the public to exercise caution when approached by individuals claiming to be the sales agents of that corporation.

A statement released by PR1MA mentioned there were several cases where potential homebuyers were fraudulently deceived by those crooks.

Modus operandi

First, the scammers claimed they were acting as sales agents for PR1MA.

Then, they would ask the victims to pay a certain sum of money as deposits.

They also allegedly told the victims that deposits were required since the houses were selling at prices lower than published.

Besides, those so-called “sales agents” misled potential buyers by telling them those houses were cheaper because they were part of a program co-organized between PR1MA and government agencies.

Certainly, the fraudsters would falsely claim that the program aimed to help more people from the lower-income group or the B40s to purchase homes.

The real SOP

What the public should know is PR1MA has a standard operating procedure (SOP) in regards to purchasing homes.

Most importantly, potential homebuyers do not have to pay any registration fee to PR1MA.

Other than that, PR1MA does not appoint any agent or third-party offering form-filling services or special allocations for PR1MA homes.

sales agents
Photo: PR1MA

Booking fee

Well, the real deal is, after registration, a potential homebuyer is required to submit a booking fee of RM500 in the form of a cheque or bank draft.

The booking fee is payable to PERBADANAN PR1MA MALAYSIA or if you are in Sarawak, to PR1MA DEVELOPMENT SDN BHD.

Words of caution

PR1MA encourages potential homebuyers to take extra measures to ensure they only deal with registered PR1MA agents.

To do that, they must always insist individuals claiming to be PR1MA sales agents to present their proof of appointment first.

An extensive list of PR1MA sales partners is available on the corporation’s web site.

What else you must do?

If you have any inquiries especially in terms of the booking process or booking fee, please contact PR1MA’s official channels.

The public may send their queries via e-mail to info@pr1ma.my.

Photo: PR1MA

Alternatively, they may also contact the PR1MA Call Centre at 03-7628 9898, from Monday to Friday (9 am to 6 pm).

Besides, it is easier and more convenient to register online via the PR1MA web site.

Updates on PR1MA homes

Currently, there are 56 housing projects under PR1MA open for application by the public.

Out of that figure, 11 projects are in Perak, followed by Melaka (9), Kedah (8), and Sabah (7).

Photo: PR1MA

Meanwhile, Selangor, Johor, Pahang, and Sarawak have four PR1MA housing projects open for application in each state.

For the rest, Negeri Sembilan has three projects, followed by Kelantan (2), Pulau Pinang (2), and Perlis (1).

Further information on those housing projects is available here.

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Finance House Lifestyle Malaysian Property Realtor

So you want to hire a real estate agent

Buying a home, including in Malaysia, can be a nerve-wracking experience especially when it comes to negotiating the price. The more so for those who are just about to purchase their first houses without the assistance of any real estate agent.

Unless you are good at haggling, the probability of getting the seller to come into agreement with your proposed price is quite slim. Even worse, you may skip negotiating after being dazzled by the glittering first impression the house gives you.

The most convenient way to keep those butterflies away from your stomach when confronting the seller is by hiring a real estate agent.

An experienced and honest real estate agent will be your worthy companion in the process of negotiation since he or she knows every trick of the game in the industry. Besides, they speak in the same language as the seller or his or her agent.

That is understandable because they make a living by negotiating for the best price on behalf of their clients and most importantly, they help you make an informed decision.

Why hire an agent?

There are a number of reasons for hiring a real estate agent. First, they are well-trained and experienced in the art of negotiating the most favorable price possible for their clients.

Maybe you are a good haggler yourself and capable of persuading the seller to give you a 3% discount. Yet, hiring a real estate agent may get you a better deal, let say, a 5% discount on the final price.

To make it clearer, if the seller opens the price at RM500,000, you may get the house at RM485,000 after you are done haggling by yourself.

In comparison, the agent may get the seller to agree to part with his or her property at RM475,000. Do the simple math and you will find there is a RM10,000 difference between those two approaches.

Second, real estate agents can also be your only true friends in this cruel and wicked world. Well, that sounds a little bit melodramatic.

In some ways, a good real estate agent performs better than your Facebook BFFs. He or she is willing to go the extra mile to ensure you get the best deal for the house by checking the defects, applying for a home loan and insurance, identifying nearby amenities or finding out the crime rate in the area.

The fees ain’t free

The best things in life are free, so they say. But, that saying is not applicable to real estate agents. That is understandable because negotiating for the sale and purchase of real estate is their main source of income.

As stated by the Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA), the commission fee for real estate agents is set at a maximum of 3% of the property sale price. That rate is only applicable for the sale and purchase of properties in Malaysia.

How about the minimum rate? Well, the least you must pay is RM1,000 per property. Let say the sale price of the property is 30,000 and if you apply the maximum commission fee of 3%, by rights you are supposed to pay only RM900 to the agent.

But, in this case, you still have to pay a minimum commission fee of RM1,000 to the real estate agent.

So you want to hire a real estate agent
Photo by iStock

So, take some time to do the calculation first to help you decide whether it will be moneywise to appoint a real estate agent to deal on your behalf.

Technically, the burden of paying the agent’s commission fee is borne by the seller. Nevertheless, the seller may transfer the cost to the buyer by adding the commission fee to the final price.

Don’t be surprised, you may end up paying the very same price that the seller asks initially.

Calm as a cucumber

After some deliberate thinking, you agree to appoint a real estate agent. Then, comes the moment for both of you to take a look at the house you are interested in buying.

The best thing to do is to let the agent do all the talking and negotiating. After all, that is the main reason you hire him or her.

Yes, you may chip in once in a while but keep it at a bare minimum. Avoid being perky and showing you are very interested while inspecting the house; otherwise, the agent will have a hard time to get the best price from the seller.

So you want to hire a real estate agent
Photo by Pexels

Taking a picture of the house or a selfie in front of it is definitely a no-no. Don’t do that, even when the seller is not around.

Some nosy neighbors may see you doing that and relay the information to the seller. Once the seller learns you are excited about the house, it will be hard for the agent to get the best deal for you.

Words of advice

Please make an effort to verify you are dealing with a REAL real estate agent. If someone approaches you and present his or her business card with the Real Estate Negotiator (REN) number printed on it, don’t take it at face value yet.

Run a check with relevant authorities such as MIEA first. In fact, you can go to the MIEA website and perform a search there.

Or, to save you from the trouble of appointing a fake real estate agent, just pick one that suits your criteria from the long list of REN members listed on the MIEA website.

Happy hunting and may you get the best deal for your dream house.

So you want to hire a real estate agent
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Analysis Mortgage Property Proptech Realtor

What does RED ANGPOW do?

It may sound innocuous but we at RED ANGPOW get variations of this question a lot whenever we meet new people at events and functions.

In short, RED ANGPOW aggregates, stores and organizes real estate market data from multiple unstructured sources to design and build data pipelines and a range of tools to provide information and insights to help homeowners, agents and developers make the decision.

For a FEE, of course. Not for free. (No, we have not introduced the price plan yet. But it is in the plan).

Products

You can sample our products on the website such as search tools, analysis, and market updates.

Then, please head over to our main page at www.redangpow.com. (Yes the tools look basic because we are solving the algorithm and the architecture bits first before spending time on the UI/UX because we can’t focus on too many things)

RED ANGPOW

Data & AI

We focus on data and artificial intelligence (buzz word alert, honestly, we use Python a lot) to mine important data to make informed and smarter decisions. We are doing the hard work for you.

If you are a developer or a real estate investor, we can complete your due diligence and feasibility studies in a matter of minutes compared to weeks using traditional methods (OK, we now know how to do it quickly, but we currently are in the process of automating the workflow, you think it is easy ah?).

Analytics

Apart from the real estate data startup, we also provide other services such as data analytics, locational intelligence, geo-analytics and custom-mapping with MapBox (most of which are in line with what we are doing as a setup).

We are more than pleased to entertain inquiries from government agencies, business organizations and members of the public who want to know more about RED ANGPOW.

Should you need help or just want to talk to us, please do not hesitate to contact faizal@redangpow.com or erhan@redangpow.com