ListingFormSelling your property is going to land you with plenty of difficult decisions to make. When deciding the best path to take, one of the most important questions you can ask yourself is this: ‘do I list my property with several different agents, or just one?’.

Picking one agent that meets all of your needs can be pretty tough, which is why some people choose multiple agents to manage the sale of their property. Regardless of which path your end up taking, it needs to serve your best interests. To make sure you know which option works best for you, we’ve created this blog post to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of open and exclusive property listings.

Open listings

An open listing is where you allow several different real estate agents to manage your property’s sale. When a buyer is found, you only pay fees to the agency that found you your buyer.

Advantages:

  • Having agencies compete against each other will inevitably speed up the sale.
  • You don’t pay any fees unless your property is sold successfully.
  • Since the agent is working for the buyer too, you only have to pay half of the commission.
  • You’re not tied to selling your property through an agent. If you manage to sell the property yourself, you don’t have to pay any fees.

Disadvantages

  • More often than not, you’re expected to market the property yourself. Unless you have sufficient know-how, this can be extremely difficult to do.
  • Since agents are competing for the sale, the focus is likely to be on getting you to accept an offer, rather than getting the best offer for you.
  • If buyers notice you’ve listed your property with multiple agents, they might think you’re having trouble selling it. This could lead them to believe there’s something wrong, such as structural faults or a bad history.
  • Although multiple agents will be listing your property, they’re likely to focus on their exclusive listings first, as they have a greater chance of making a sale. This could mean your property stays on the market far longer than you anticipated.

Exclusive listing

For an exclusive listing, you agree to only list your property with one agency. By giving them exclusive property rights, the agency will work to get you the best price possible. When you sign an agreement for an exclusive listing, the length of time the agent has to sell your property will often be mentioned. These can range anywhere from 3 months to 1 year – if the agent hasn’t sold your property within the set time period, you can cancel the contract with no fees.

Advantages

  • You’ll get to know your agent and develop a trust relationship, knowing that they’re serving your best interests.
  • Providing information and arranging viewings will be much easier, as you’ll only have one point of contact.
  • The agent will undertake all required duties to sell your property, including marketing and hosting open house events.
  • Since they’re guaranteed commission, the agent will dedicate more of their time to your property.
  • Your property will often fetch a better price, as without any competition, the agent won’t press you to take the first offer available.
  • The agent will have more time to find a sale, so unlike open listings, they can be selective with which offers they bring to you.

Disadvantages

  • If there’s a downturn in the market, one agent might struggle to bring in strong enough offers.
  • Compared to open listings, commission rates can be much higher.
  • If you don’t get along with your agent and want to change, you’ll often have to wait until your contract is up to avoid paying a fee.

If you’re looking to get your property sold quickly, your best bet is to pursue an open listing. As we’ve discussed, however, rushing your property to sale will probably have an impact on the price you get. If time is on your side, make the effort to find one agent that you trust. Although it can take longer, you’ll receive a far more dedicated service and fetch a better price.

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If you have questions about buying or selling real estate or would like to speak to a real estate agent, contact us today. We’d be happy to offer advice.

The information and links provided on this website are for general information only and should not be taken as constituting professional advice. This information does not take into account the financial situation or particular needs of individual readers. Before making any decisions about matters discussed on this website, you should consider whether it is suitable for you in light of your own circumstances, and seek appropriate advice.