When buying or selling your property, you’ll need to engage the services of a Settlement Agent. But how do you choose which one to use, when a quick online search reveals hundreds of possibilities?
We recommend that you approach appointing your Settlement Agent just as you would with any other professional in your life, such as an accountant, doctor or tradesperson.
Firstly, speak to friends, family and trusted members of the property industry (such as your Real Estate Agent or Finance Broker) and get their recommendations. Positive feedback from a trusted source is key!
Our Licensee, Katelyn, advises:
When calling around to potential settlement agencies, make sure you ask them more than just their price.
Whilst price is obviously an important factor, the cheapest agent is not generally the best choice.”
Licences and memberships
You should ensure that your Settlement Agent holds a current Settlement Agent Licence. You can check their registration through the Department of Commerce.
Further to this, see if your Settlement Agent is also a member of the Australian Institute of Conveyancers (WA Division) like Metro Settlements is. This means that they must abide by the AICWA Code of Conduct, which promotes the highest levels of professional conveyancing and ethical service.
Other things to consider
It’s important that your Settlement Agent knows what they’re doing and is open to your preferred way of working together. Here are some things to consider:
How will they communicate with you?
- Do you like face-to-face contact and hands-on assistance completing your forms?
- Would you prefer documentation come via email to save time and paper?
- Does the settlement agent understand your preferences and are they willing to accommodate them?
A good Settlement Agent will ensure that they keep in regular contact with you, by your preferred method. They will also keep your Real Estate Agent and Finance Broker updated throughout the process.
What is their experience?
- How long have they been around?
- How big is the agency?
You will generally find that a well-established, boutique agency will have a large repeat customer base that they’ve worked closely with over many years.
This is always the sign of a good settlement agency as their clients choose to come back time and time again after each positive settlement experience.
Choose an agency that is too large and you might find that the staff are managing large portfolios and don’t have sufficient time to dedicate to your needs.
Who will be handling your file?
- Will it be an established Licensed Settlement Agent or a Junior Clerk?
Some law firms and larger settlement agencies employ junior clerks who may not have the experience you need to ensure that your settlement runs smoothly.
Instead, you want your settlement to be handled directly by a Licensed Settlement Agent.
These people attend regular professional development courses in order to keep their registration current, and as such have up-to-date knowledge of the latest industry changes.
Metro Settlements is here to help
We’re here to help you! Here’s why Metro Settlements is Perth’s leading settlement agency:
- We have a loyal client base founded on exceptional service – Metro Settlements was founded in 1982 and we pride ourselves on the fact that our clients come back to us, time and time again.
- You’re more than just a file – our staff will get to know you and treat your transaction with the unique care that it deserves.
- Your settlement will be handled by a Licensed Settlement Agent who has the knowledge and experience needed to advise and guide you through the process.