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Investors ‘dissatisfied’ with Dubai brokers

Dubai, October 6, 2009

Sixty-one per cent of consumers who bought property in Dubai in the last two years are dissatisfied with the performance of real estate agents who brokered their purchases, says a study.

Harbor Real Estate Brokerage, an integrated real estate service provider in Dubai, interviewed 178 property owners over a four month period in a series of face-to-face interviews.

Participants evaluated property brokers according to knowledge and skills, ethics and behavior, consultative ability, and empathy. The respondents were asked to rate their individual experiences on a five point scale ranging from excellent to very poor.

Of those interviewed, 61 per cent of respondents rated their brokers as either poor or very poor.

“What we have here is an indicator of an industry which is still relatively immature,” said Mohanad Alwadiya, managing director of Harbor Real Estate Brokerage.

“The level of proficiency in effective consultancy, based on sound knowledge of the market and an understanding of the buyer’s requirements, appears to be the main shortcoming,” he added.

“Buyers today have choice and are more knowledgeable about the market, and they seek advice from professionals that they feel they can trust. Unfortunately, in the majority of cases, consumers are left feeling disappointed.”

The research, originally intended to serve as a barometer on service levels in the local industry, has provided Harbor with valuable insights into areas requiring development within its own operations.

Harbor has already begun to benchmark and monitor its own service-level performance against those of its overseas affiliates, with the aim of surpassing service levels of established successful operations in mature markets.

Of those interviewed, 73 per cent had purchased their property prior to the recession—set as October 2008—while the remainder had purchased their property after October 2008 (post-recession). About 23 per cent of those interviewed purchased within the last four months.

About 12 per cent of consumers who made their purchase prior to the recession stated that their experience was excellent or good.

In the post-recession period, that number fell to about 11 per cent, although satisfactory ratings improved from 25 per cent pre-recession to 31 per cent post-recession.

In the post-recession market, 58 per cent of respondents rated their experience as poor or very poor, brining the two year average of dissatisfied customers to 61 per cent.

The main causes of buyer dissatisfaction were in the areas of knowledge, consultative ability and empathy.

“What we are seeing globally is a race for improvement,” said Alwadiya.

“Real estate has been under tremendous pressure due to the recession, and those who wish to thrive in the market will only do so by identifying and responding to the needs of their clientele. Because we are a service industry, we can benefit greatly from observing and adopting best practices of more established markets around the world,” Alwadiya concluded. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Dubai | brokers | study | Harbor Real Estate |

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