In October, I had the opportunity to attend the official launch of Keller Williams Realty in Panama. Held at the Westin Playa Bonita Panamá, there were over 200 attendees, both locals and international representatives. I was impressed with what I heard and the high standard of ethics and professionalism that KW Panama will be bringing countrywide. This successful company is going to be a positive thing for Panama, and is already changing the real estate landscape here.
You may have heard stories of people, especially foreigners, who have had bad experiences with real estate transactions in Panama. Part of the reason for this is that there has not been an active oversight of the industry, especially in the “interior” regions of Panama. Just about every attorney, and many other people, claim to be realtors even though they may, or may not, have educated knowledge of how a real estate transaction is conducted in Panama or even be working with a licensed realtor. Buyers and sellers often follow the inaccurate direction of these folks, only to find out later that something was done wrong. These are the stories that are publicized and scare off potential buyers.
Another problem has been the seller’s idea that an “Exclusive Listing” is not as effective as throwing a wide net, in an attempt to reach more buyers, by listing a property with every “so called” realtor in Panama. This process is wrought with problems! Everything from misrepresentation to inaccurate pricing on conflicting listings all over the internet, hurt more than help to get a sale.
The Panamanian MLS (Multiple Listing Service – called ACOBIR in Panama), though started in the 1970’s, has been under-used as a tool for actively marketing sales. Now that the MLS has been reactivated as a top marketing tool for real estate, there will be substantially more exposure for buyers and sellers worldwide. I am seeing an average of 10 new listings posted there every day! Best of all, listings must go through a licensed broker and the information on the MLS has to be verified before it is posted, insuring that accurate information is being presented. Search listings here: http://www.acobir.com/
Keller Williams Realty, Inc. is the largest real estate franchise by agent count in the world with more than 790 offices in 21 countries, and 134,000 associates across the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia. In 2015, Training Magazine named Keller Williams the No. 1 training organization across all industries in the world. They offer extensive and ongoing training in Sales, Ethics, and Professional Development for all of their associates. This new level of professionalism will be a positive move forward for Panama!
There are already over 100 associates and realtors in Panama, mostly in the Panama City areas. Associates are NOT realtors, they do marketing and consulting for the company. Realtors must be Panamanian citizens. Currently, there are 4 associates in Chiriquí. Two in Boquete and two in Puerto Armuelles. Just in time for the economic growth to come!
If you are interested in joining the KW Panama team, please contact me at Editor@visitPuertoArmuelles.com and I will put you in touch with the right leaders and more information.
Have a house for sale, rent, or looking to purchase? Contact 6683-6682 (English) or 6815-5196 (Spanish) for more information. Along with the For Sale by Owner ads, and others, in our classified section on this website, you will be seeing more KW listings as well!
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