Listing Agreements

Listing Agreements are contracts between a seller and a real estate agent that provides the agent with the right to list, advertise, and handle the sale of a property. This is a legal contract that both parties will be bound to so understanding the components and their meaning are important. The listing agreement not only ensure the real estate agent that you as the seller will work with them, but also provides protections to the seller by outlining their responsibilities and consequences for non-performance.

Listing Agreement Components:

The following terms are most of the important portions associated with a listing agreement between a seller and listing agent.

Commission Rate: This is the amount of money that the real estate agent or RealtorĀ© will make with the successful sale of your property. This amount can be expressed in percentages "%" or a flat fee. You can use when searching for a selling agent to receive multiple offers from different agents to get the best rate.

Exclusivity: The listing agreement will provide the real estate agent with the exclusive rights to represent the seller in the real estate transaction. You will not want to be in multiple listing agreements at once as you will be responsible for paying both real estate agents regardless of who sells the home. 

Term Length: The amount of time or "term" length will be agreed upon in this contract. The amount of time depends of your personal needs but you will want to give the real estate agent sufficient time to list, advertise, and sell your home. Listing agreements can range from one month to a year. A shorter amount of time provides the seller with enough time to find another real estate agent if they disagree with their services. You can always renew the listing agreement if you are satisfied and need more time. Longer listing agreements will be preferred by the real estate agent and for good reason. Selling a home can take a long time and they will want to ensure their commission is not lost right when the sell is gaining traction. When receiving offers from real estate agents on, the term length will be included in the offer.

Clause: these section are like the fine print but not hidden. They protect the listing agent and broker from the seller finding their own buyer while under contract and not wanting to pay the commission. This also protects the listing agent from the seller holding out on the sale past the listing agreement date. Being let out of a listing agreement to change agents is acceptable but verify that you are not responsible for paying two commissions if the new agents sells the property quickly.

Roles and Responsibilities: The "Duties" of the listing real estate agent will be outlined in this agreement. Everything they are authorized to do and required to do. In this section you will find things like posting a yard sign, creating the listing sheet, listing the property on the MLS etc. If you do not see these listed then request they be put into the agreement.

Dispute Resolution: The listing agreement will also outline the handling of disputes that can only be worked out formally. These usually come in the form of "binding arbitration" or "mediation". They may also specify a specific county or state jurisdiction so read carefully.

Now that you're ready to find a listing agent, create a free listing HERE. You can create a simple listing and receive offers from real estate agents in your area who will provide you with their proposed commission rates and length of terms all in one place. No more calling around just to get the standard rates.