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How to properly fire a listing agent

Zillow • Oct 14, 2013 at 4:07 PM

By Monte Mohr

How to Properly Fire a Listing Agent

Are you unhappy with the lackluster performance of your listing? Are you ready to terminate the relationship with your current real estate agent? If so, you are not alone. Plenty of people end up feeling mismatched with their agent.

Should you find yourself at the end of a listing agreement period and you haven’t sold your home, chances are you’re considering the option of finding a new listing agent. Perhaps you want someone who will work harder to sell your property, or maybe you just want someone who communicates better.

So how do you go about firing your current agent?

This can be a really tough thing to go through emotionally because you might feel a sense of loyalty to them if you were referred by a friend or family member. Or you may really like their personality, but you’re simply not impressed with their knowledge of the real estate industry. Remember, the sale of your home is first and foremost a business transaction, so you must approach it as such.

Expect your current agent to try and secure a re-listing. You might even experience a rush of new buyer activity just before the expiration of your listing. It’s not uncommon for a listing agent to contact every single buyer’s agent who previously toured your home; they’re looking for any bit of feedback they can find. In doing so, they can dangle a carrot in front you, such as, “There are some nibbles out there and we just need another month.”

Your agent may suggest a tactic like lowering your asking price one last time before the listing runs out; it’s a last ditch effort to garnish attention from buyers before the listing expires. But if you’ve made the decision to replace your realtor at the end of your listing agreement, please heed this warning – do NOT lower your asking price!

Why? It’s simple. When a new agent re-lists your property, they organically have a difficult time creating excitement over a home that has been on the market already. And when you consent to let the first agent lower the price by several thousand dollars, you effectively make it 10 times harder on the new agent to gain any momentum. It is much more effective to let your listing expire and then allow the new agent to lower the price after you’ve re-listed.

If you handle the situation thoughtfully and logically, your initial agent will most likely agree that the partnership isn’t working and will be more than willing to part ways; many times they are even willing to do this prior to your contract expiration. You should contact your agent directly and tell them that you wish to sever your work with them. Explain the complaints you have then sign, date and send a written notice of termination to the agent and their broker stating that the agency relationship has been terminated. Making the broker aware of your experience will help ensure that the licensees within the brokerage are being held accountable.

Monte Mohr has sold more than 2,500 homes, making him one of America’s top Realtors for the last 25 years. This experience has given him a unique perspective on the Nashville real estate market where he can be found at www.tennesseedreamhomes.com. He is also a regular contributor of real estate information to Nashville’s NBC affiliate station, WSMV Channel 4. To learn more about Monte Mohr’s experience as a real estate agent, to get free advice about your biggest real estate challenges or to request an interview, contact him at Info@TennesseeDreamHomes.com.

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