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Theproperty market is highly competitive. More and more realtors are vying for the sales mandates of homeowners willing to sell with lower commissions based on fixed or flat rates. We have researched how high realtor commissions are in Switzerland and explain what you should know about realtors and commissions. Our most important advice beforehand: compare apples with apples and pears with pears.
Most realtors in Switzerland work on a contingency fee basis. They receive a percentage of the sales price fixed in the realtor contract and are therefore interested in selling a property as expensively as possible. The situation is different with a lump sum or fixed price, for example 12,000 Swiss francs: here the realtor receives his fee regardless of the selling price. Depending on the contract, the fee is due in full or in part even if the realtor is unable to sell the property.
Study the brokerage contract thoroughly and pay attention to the fine print. Find out exactly which services are included and which you have to pay for additionally - or provide yourself. The contract can be concluded in writing or verbally.
The realtor works on behalf of the seller. His fee is to be paid according to the bestseller principle. This ensures that the realtor represents the interests of his principal or client to the best of his knowledge and belief and sells the house or apartment at the best possible price.
Sellers can deduct the realtor's commission from the property profit and thus reduce their tax burden. Read more about this in our article "Real Estate Gains Tax: What Sellers and Buyers Should Know"
The realtor commission is a matter of negotiation and depends on various factors. 2 to 3 percent of the sales price for single-family homes or condominiums and 1.5 to 2 percent for multi-family homes are customary in the industry. As a general rule, the higher the sales price, the lower the percentage commission. There are regional differences. In the canton of Ticino, for example, it is currently more difficult to sell a property than in other regions. For this reason, the realtor's commission in the sunny region of Switzerland is currently significantly higher than the 2 to 3 percent customary in the market and the industry. However, realtors are not free to set their prices. A disproportionately high realtor's commission can be reduced by the seller in court pursuant to OR 417.
In addition to the commission, a realtor may charge travel expenses, out-of-pocket expenses, advertising costs, and other out-of-pocket expenses if so specified in the contract, so it pays to study the contract carefully before signing.
Yes. Talk to the realtor, get competing offers and compare apples with apples. Pay attention not only to the price, but also to the services and any additional costs. For example, for property valuation, sales documentation or advertisements. Most realtors conclude exclusive contracts, but in some regions of Switzerland it is quite common to award the contract to several realtors - if you conclude an exclusive contract, you should get better conditions. And if you take on individual tasks yourself, such as viewing the property with interested parties, you minimize the effort and thus the costs for the realtor.
Is now the right time to sell your house or apartment? You can find the answer in the article "Sell Your House or Wait and See: Is the Swiss Property Market Overheated?"
You have agreed with your realtor in the realtor contract when the realtor commission is due. As a rule, the claim arises with the notarization of the purchase contract for the property. The commission and any ancillary costs are payable after the contract has been concluded. Some realtors demand smaller advance payments to cover their initial costs - this is legitimate. But what does a realtor offer in the first place? What does the realtor do for his commission? This also depends on the agreements in the realtor contract: They ...
Basically, there are four reasons why a realtor is not entitled to a commission:
If you have concluded a simple realtor contract with your realtor but are selling your house or apartment yourself, the realtor is not entitled to a commission. In this case, you only owe him the fee and the cost of tasks listed as extras in the contract, for example, sales documentation. If you have concluded an exclusive contract, you still owe him the commission.
You can sell your house or apartment without a realtor and thus save the realtor commission. At first glance, this seems like a no-brainer. Especially when demand exceeds supply. In "House Sale in 10 Steps with Houzy's Smart Tools" we explain the entire sales process in an easy-to-understand way. But it takes not only know-how, but also time and patience until you find the right buyer. And sometimes you need a thick skin, because one or the other prospective buyer criticizes your house, with which you are emotionally attached, in order to push the price down.
That depends on a number of factors. Among other things, whether you have the time to take care of the many tasks involved in selling a property. Even if demand exceeds supply, marketing a property is no piece of cake. You'll need professional photos of the property for sales documentation, and you'll have to show the house or apartment to many prospective buyers until you find a buyer you want to entrust your home to. A realtor takes care of these and other time-consuming tasks for you. From the property valuation to the change of ownership in the land register. And they know the regional property market and potential buyers. What's more, there's a good chance that they'll sell your house or apartment for a higher price. For example, if they sell your property for 1.2 instead of 1.1 million Swiss francs, the investment of 22,000 to 33,000 Swiss francs will have been more than worthwhile.
When selling a property, a lot of money is at stake. Therefore, take enough time to find the realtor you trust. Get offers and compare the services and extras carefully. It makes sense to choose a realtor from the region who has already sold similar houses or apartments. In our partner network, you will find verified realtors in your area who we recommend to you with a clear conscience: