Aug 2nd, 2012

How Does the Multi-Listing Service Work?

In an effort to continuously improve the services provided by local real estate professionals, the Barbados Estate Agent and Valuers Association (BEAVA) now provides a Multi-Listing Service (MLS) for use by its members.  This service makes the search for properties much more efficient as it provides an extremely convenient database allowing agents to know what is on the market at any given moment.  The MLS acts as a big warehouse of real estate inventory and is extremely beneficial to its users as it provides comprehensive information.

But, how does the MLS really benefit sellers? Well, imagine that your property now becomes exposed to multiple agents at the touch of a button.  You now have a powerful sales force working on your behalf which will show your property to all qualified buyers in your property’s price range.  Exposure to a larger pool of prospective purchasers now increases the demand for your property and increases the chances of it being sold in a faster time.

So, how does the system really work? BEAVA’s members can list their properties, inputting as much information as possible as regards the property’s age, number of rooms, construction features, location, square footage, price etc. At a glance, agents can quickly compare and contrast similar properties and provide their clients with thorough information on what is available.  The sales prices of any properties sold must also be recorded, making this database provide invaluable information for valuers within the association.  It will help agents to educate their sellers on whether or not they are positioned correctly within the market or if their pricing may need to be adjusted.

A maximum of 3 listing agents, each known as the seller’s agent, can represent each property.  They have to secure the authorization from the seller to market their property on the MLS. Then the other agents can work through the listing agent to see the property.  If a sale is achieved, the listing agent will split his commission with the cooperating agent.

The MLS is also available for the public both locally and internationally so that clients can see all the properties in one place.  BEAVA’s members are eagerly signing up for this service which will certainly enhance the profile of the real estate industry in Barbados.

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Feb 7th, 2011

Choose your Barbados Real Estate Agent Wisely

The services of a realtor can be extremely advantageous and you are encouraged to seek out their expertise when it is time to buy or rent a property, sell your home or have it managed.  Don’t be afraid to ask a plethora of questions, as you are putting all of your hope in someone you hardly know and asking them to help you, with perhaps one of the major decisions in your life.

Million Dollar Homes estate agency caters to a discerning clientele and it is therefore essential that personalized service be of the utmost importance where a high level of care and attention is given, diminishing fears and making the client feel totally at ease.

When it comes to purchasing property in Barbados, an abundance of knowledge pertaining to the client’s preferred property characteristics is essential.  Your realtor should be savvy about various geographic locations in order to make the best fit between a neighbourhood and the client’s status, personality and objectives.  A realtor often captures what the client really wants only after meeting with them and viewing several properties. They then have a better understanding as to what property type will be the best fit and can subsequently advise them accordingly.

Your realtor should never super-impose their ideas on you but only serve as a guide, providing you with as many details as possible so that you can then make an informed decision.  Be weary if your realtor only makes everything look fabulous as opposed to providing you with the facts.  You want a realtor who seems sincere, who you know will have your best interest at heart and not their commission.

Million Dollar Homes prides itself in being one of the premiere agencies in Barbados Real Estate and furthermore, Caribbean Real Estate. With a wealth of knowledge of Barbados property in particular, long term rentals, luxury villa rentals and property management, you can be assured that your interests are placed at the forefront.  This is paramount when making a major investment, relocating from hundreds of miles away or trusting a stranger to look after your home.

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Sep 3rd, 2010

10 Reasons to Visit Barbados

Barbados is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world. Here are ten reasons, why you should visit is as well.

1. There are many reasons to visit Barbados and one among them is the exciting nightlife. The nightlife in Barbados rivals those of most Mediterranean getaways. The nocturnal scene is very vibrant, with numerous forms of entertainment to offer. Party goers are encouraged to stay in the south coast, as this part of the island has the best bars and nightclubs.

2. Barbados is the kind of holiday destination suitable for every type of vacation, whether it is a summer vacation for the entire family or a romantic getaway for honeymooners.

3. The beaches of Barbados are great places to frolic in the warm water and get oneself a golden tan. In addition to this, they also offer plenty of entertainment options, with activities like surfing, snorkelling, diving and submarine tours that take one deep under the sea to view the majesty of the coral reefs.

4. Barbados has an incredible climate and for those seeking some sun and sand, this island becomes an excellent vacation option. The island has an average temperature of 28 to 31 degrees centigrade and spring time is the best time to visit.

5. The delicate Caribbean cuisine, with its vibrant colours and flavours make a visit to Barbados a sensual delight for the taste buds. Some of the best places to dine on the island include Cobblers Cove Restaurant, the Sunbury Plantation House and many more.

6. Yet another excellent reason to go to Barbados is to see and experience historic Bridgetown. This magnificent city was constructed in 1654, and today has glitzy shopping arcades lining its streets alongside historic buildings and famous architectural wonders.

7. The people of Barbados have a vibrant culture with flourishing festivals. The Holetown Festival held to honour the very first settlement on the island in the year 1627 is an exciting show. The festival holds events like historical lectures, antique car parades, and many other cultural shows.

8. Barbados is a great travel destination for golf enthusiasts. Lush green slopes adorn the landscape of Barbados, and the island resort has several magnificent playing courses as well. The most noted of these is Royal Westmoreland, a golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr. This course combines the excitement of golf with the stunning vistas of the island.

9. Also, the island has an assortment of accommodation options to fit almost every budget with luxury hotels lining the west coast, and affordability and industry being the mainstay of the south coast.

10. The island of Barbados is every shopper’s dream with shopping being duty free on the island. This means travellers can purchase souvenirs and other items at some of the best rates possible.

Orson Johnson writes for Holiday Velvet, a travel website.

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Aug 30th, 2010

Are you a Landlord? Know your Responsibilities

Owning a home and renting or giving it on mortgage is a very prestigious and very interesting thing, but being a landlord is not a very easy part of life. Your tenant would expect a lot of responsibilities to be undertaken by you, especially to the general appliances, fittings and the maintenance of the house.

Your tenant would expect that you take care of the maintenance of the exterior of the house doing repairs like repainting, repairing broken gutters and steps, if you have a lawn and a garden the maintenance of these are also your responsibility. If you are not able to take care of these your tenant can but with the expense on your side.

As a landlord you should have a yearly maintenance program of inspecting the house and fixing broken fittings, washers, heating systems and even take care of the plumbing jobs. At the same time, you are certainly obliged to see that your tenant does not forcefully destroy your property by misusing it.

The regular wear and tear of a home that has a family living in it can be taken care of by the landlord. If you as a the landlord find it difficult to undertake the maintenance jobs you can gain the confidence of your tenant and ask him to do the repairs at a nominal cost, offering to reimburse the costs to him.

The most important responsibility of a landlord is to maintain all the records of the agreement with the tenant and landlord and have the security deposit ready when the tenant vacate the premises. You should have a comfortable and safe living condition for your tenant while he is living in your house. If there is any injury to the tenant due to dangerous living conditions in the house your tenant has the right to file a case on you.

If there is a friendly understanding between tenant and landlord from the beginning till the date of vacating there would be no difficulties in being a landlord of a house. The tenant too would feel comfortable living in your house.

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Aug 25th, 2010

The Value of a Valuation

A property valuation is the practice of developing an opinion of the real value of real property, usually its “open market value”.  As no two (2) properties are identical or in the same exact location it is necessary for an expert to provide an appraisal.  It is therefore an individual opinion of a valuer based on the relevant facts available.  So, why should we have a valuation?

Firstly, it helps us to ascertain the true value of a property before a sale.  You will want to ensure you yield the maximum revenue from selling your property and hence you should know what it is worth.

Secondly, it may provide you with the replacement value of your property in the event that it is destroyed by fire or some natural disaster.  This will allow you to have the property then insured for its true value.  The replacement value is calculated by deducting the value of the land from the overall value to arrive at the value of the structure.

And, thirdly, a valuation is beneficial for the purposes of securing a mortgage as lending institutions will require it.  As your property will serve as collateral for your loan, they need to know the real value in question, in order to make the appropriate loan or deny the loan.

A variety of methods may be used to calculate the value of a business, office location, home, or rental property and can differ depending on the use of the valuation.  These include the Market Data Approach or Comparable Approach.  This Approach appraises property from the view point of a potential buyer-user.  Recent sales in the same or a comparable area of size and quality similar to that of the subject property are compiled and analyzed as to utility, size, quality, location and time.

The Replacement Method or the Replacement Cost Approach appraises property from the view point of a builder or contractor.  The expenses of building a structure at today’s costs are computed, the estimated accrued depreciation is subtracted from the cost of the structure and then an estimate of the land value and any other improvements is added to that subtotal thereby giving a value based on the cost approach.  Variables involved in assessing the value include location, labour and material costs.  The costs of land acquisitions, site preparation, utilities, types of building materials, tenant improvements and soft costs (architectural and engineering costs, legal and brokerage fees and other similar related costs) are taken into consideration.

The Income Approach is based on the expected rate of return from the potential net operating income from the property (assuming it was leased to a third party).  It provides a value based on the property’s ability to generate and maintain a stream of income for the owner.   You therefore look at the property in terms of money and not in terms of its physical structure.  This is the most often used approach in the appraisal of commercial or industrial property.

Since real estate is unique and not all relevant information may be available each method may produce a different value.  However, in a perfect environment it is hoped that the three variations of value produce similar results.  It is therefore to your benefit to ensure that you use only the most reputable and competent valuers, preferably those who are members of an association such as the Barbados Estate Agents and Valuers Association that have the expertise and experience to provide professional valuations.

Prepared by

Ms. Cherita Howard

Prepared for the Barbados Estate Agents & Valuers Association for Barbados Property News (Jun/Jul 2010)

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Aug 25th, 2010

Buying Land – 6 Reasons to Use a Realtor

Find an experienced, trustworthy realtor and let them help you find your land, and guide you through the land buying process. A Realtor is your best friend during this process and will walk you through it from beginning to end. They will help you avoid many of the pitfalls and problems that arise when buying land.

The Realtor Is Free!

The realtor is paid a commission from the sale of the property. The commission is paid by the seller so you use a realtor for free. You don’t have to use the realtor who listed and advertises the property. Choose the realtor you want, the payment will be worked out between the two realtors, and you will have the realtors services for free.

The Realtor Will Help You Find The Right Property

A realtor has access to the local MLS (Multiple Listing Service) which lists all the property for sale by realtors in the area. Using the MLS the realtor can find properties that meet your criteria and take you to those properties. Many MLS’s are now listed on, where anyone can view them, but the realtor is an expert at using this information to find the land you are looking for.

The Realtor Will Do the Work For You

The Realtor will do most of the work involved in finding and purchasing property. A real estate purchase transaction is a complicated procedure which involves many details as well as many people. In most cases the transaction will be easier and much smoother if a realtor is involved in the process.

The Realtor Will Help You Pay A Fair Price For Land

One problem for buyers is paying too much for land. It is difficult to know what the land is really worth. Because realtors deal with many parcels of land they know approximately what a specific parcel of land is worth.

In my line of work I have observed those who use a realtor usually buy land at a fair price. Keep in mind the realtor who listed a parcel of land has an obligation to sell for the highest price since they represent the seller.

The Realtor Will Show You The Property

The realtor knows the local area and will help you find the land you are looking for. Looking for land may involve driving down back roads without directions or street signs. The realtor will take you to the properties you want to look at, and the areas you want to look in.

Often a piece of land does not have an address or directions. Sometimes you will need to read legal descriptions and topographical maps. The realtor has experience in reading these and can take you right to the property, and show you the property boundaries.

The Realtor Will Help You Avoid Many Problems

Using a realtor will help you avoid many of the problems experienced by land buyers. Many of these problems don’t arise until after the purchase. There are many possible problems, too many to mention, but include such things as: road issues, water rights, mineral rights, etc. Save yourself from many problems and use an experienced, trustworthy realtor.

Deron Wilkerson is a licensed Title and Escrow Office in Utah. He has owned and operated a title company since 1991, handling over 15,000 land transactions. Visit Deron Wilkerson at for more information, tips and help on buying land.

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