"Living room real estate agencies"proliferate, but few are real pros

Following the 1989 fall of Communism, real estate agencies sprouted up all over Slovakia. Some blossomed into professional deal-brokers, others wilted due to lack of resources. The preponderance of agencies is largely due to the fact that anyone who has a general trade license can sell or lease real estate. They do not need to be specifically licensed as a real estate agent. Illustrating this point are the nearly 300 real estate agencies listed in Bratislava business registries. The biggest agencies are united in the Association of Realty Offices of Slovakia (ARKS), which has 20 members, and the Union of Real Estate Offices of the Slovak Republic (ZRKSR), which has 42 members. Membership in ARKS, whose members are mostly in Bratislava, is more expensive than membership in ZRKSR, whose members are more geographically dispersed.

Following the 1989 fall of Communism, real estate agencies sprouted up all over Slovakia. Some blossomed into professional deal-brokers, others wilted due to lack of resources. The preponderance of agencies is largely due to the fact that anyone who has a general trade license can sell or lease real estate. They do not need to be specifically licensed as a real estate agent. Illustrating this point are the nearly 300 real estate agencies listed in Bratislava business registries.

The biggest agencies are united in the Association of Realty Offices of Slovakia (ARKS), which has 20 members, and the Union of Real Estate Offices of the Slovak Republic (ZRKSR), which has 42 members. Membership in ARKS, whose members are mostly in Bratislava, is more expensive than membership in ZRKSR, whose members are more geographically dispersed. To gain membership, agencies must pay a fee, adhere to the standards of the associations, and keep commissions between 3 and 6 percent. These associations can refer you to their members and if any problems occur, the association is a good place to turn to for help.

Beware of what Melánia Čupíková of ARKS calls "living-room real estate agencies." These are agencies with one employee, working out of a flat, with little or no experience.

When approaching a new agency, ask for references. Find out what their experience in the real estate market is. the number of projects they have completed, what their fee is, and whether they are members of any association. Some agencies might hesitate to give you a number of projects that they have completed.

We list real estate agencies in Bratislava (see pages 6 and 7). All claim to be able to meet any needs, yet few of them were able to provide complete information. HB Reavis and Bratislavská Realitná Kancelária were the only ones to provide the number of square meters they have sold or leased. Ten of the agencies have people who speak at least some English.

Real Estate Associations

ARKS, Nevädzová 5, 821 01 Bratislava, Tel/fax: 07/578-7223
ZRKSR, Ružová dolina 27, 824 69 Bratislava, Tel: 07/523-7455

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

Top stories

Senate voted STU rector down. They also cite fake news website

The session of the Academic Senate proposed that Rector Fikar be dismissed. Police called to the university as well.

Miroslav Fikar

Dozens of people die of COVID every day. A drop not expected for at least two weeks

People who would otherwise survive may die of other serious diagnoses due to the epidemic.

Illustrative stock photo

Slovakia orders a curfew and embarks on its COVID experiment

High turnout in testing in four northern districts, decision awaited on extending the project to the nation. Prison for a prominent prosecutor and parliament's speaker injured.

Waiting for the results of COVID tests during the pilot phase of the nationwide testing in the town of Nižná in Orava, northern Slovakia.

Volunteering in developing countries is an adventure from beginning to end

Slovak Jozef Baňás spent 12 months volunteering in Georgia.

Jozef Baňás