Real Estate Agent Agreements: How Long Will They Take?

Two of the most frequently asked questions I often here are “how long properties should be listed for sale?” and “how long will a listing expire in case the property end up not selling?”. The duration of the listing is entirely up to you and it will depend on how fast you want your home to be sold and the type of market you are selling your property in.The first thing you need to think about is choosing the right real estate agent. After deciding on an agent, you can start discussing about the listing agreements. Do not sign the listing agreement yet until you are sure about the listing duration that can suit your specific needs.The duration of the real estate contract is up to you. Your real estate agent can help you decide by suggesting time frames in which he/she thinks is realistic yet you must also consider what duration will be best suitable with your needs.The 30-day, 90-day, 6-month and 1 year listings are the four most common time frames for a listing agreement. Your real estate agent will present these options to you and explain the difference of each.A 30-Day ListingIf you are selling your property in a hot market, then it is normal to expect a quick sale. If the market is indeed favourable, then a property for sale will be expected to be pending within just a couple of days or weeks. If your property is not sold within that period yet several similar properties within your area are getting purchased within the 30 day time frame, then you can choose to deal with a different real estate agent who can better accommodate your needs.However, before deciding to replace your agent, you may want to evaluate your current purchase price and see if this is the reason why your competing properties are selling quicker. Take note, even the most experienced and skilled real estate agent will have a hard time selling a property with an unrealistic selling price.90-Day Listing AgreementThe average listing time frame for a normal real estate market is usually 90 days. You can try doing open house events, online listings, magazine and newspaper listings, and other strategies. If your house is still not selling within the first month, then you can ask for buyers’ feedback to gain an idea what is turning them off. Whether it is your sale price or your home’s current condition, you will want to make adjustments and improvements to get the sale.6-Month Real Estate Agent ListingThe average time frame for a property to sit on the market in a cold market condition would be more than two months. This market condition is known as the buyers’ market and you may need to decide on a listing agreement that has a longer time frame. This protects you in case your agent’s listing expires during the time your property is still being held under the rules of pending sale. If this happens, you may want to extend the listing agreement.If you decide on a 6-month listing contract, make sure to acquire a written guarantee from your agent that states you can terminate the deal after 90 days if ever you are not satisfied with the agent’s services. A 6 month contract is a long duration and it is best that you have assurance that you can choose a different agent before the end of the time frame if things are not working out. If the agent is not willing to provide this written guarantee, then it is best that you find someone else.A 1-Year ListingAlthough a 1-year listing seems like a long period, it is the right choice for circumstances or market conditions where sale is expected to take longer. This could be because your property is unique, expensive, located in a rural area or is in a big piece of land. Properties such as luxury homes or apartments require extensive marketing that may take time to find the right buyers. The right real estate agent would admit that they require a bigger time frame in order to sell these properties.The listing agreement’s time frame is just one of the essential things you should work out with your real estate agent. When choosing an agent, take into account an agent’s experience as well as reputation before signing any contract. The right agent can help you decide on a listing agreement that can best accommodate your home selling needs.

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