Firing your Real Estate Agent?
By Sadiya Anjum
So how do you sack your real estate agent? Maybe he has not lived up to your expectations and you have found reasons to “let him go”. But before you actually fire your agent you need to analyze the reasons for doing so. If another agent has tempted you or you have found a deal that you would rather not involve your agent with, you need to take a step back. These reasons are firstly unethical and next will not hold ground in court. Reasons like personality differences between the two of you or the agent’s failure to perform according to your expectations may, on the other hand, be fair grounds to dismiss him.
Firstly you begin with getting your reasons right. If you can back those valid reasons with proof you can do something about it. Begin with having a discussion with your agent. Talking things out and clearing the air may actually result in you not having to fire your agent after all. The agent may admit to mistakes or vow to perform better. However if this does not work out, take out the contract you signed with him and scrutinize the details mentioned for termination of contract.
If you have signed a contract where the agent has listed your home for sale, you may have to wait for a certain period of time before terminating it. In some other cases, a contract maybe terminated with a written document but you may still have to pay your agent a commission if the house sells within a specified period of time. If the details are hazy and the agent does not have authority to terminate the contract, contact the real estate agency. The agency will be able to terminate the contract if due proof is provided. However, you may have to shell out some money to terminate it and this should be specified clearly by in the contract. But odds are that your contract will have the exact details of going about this. Each contract is unique in its details hence it is essential that you read it and follow the details.
If you are a buyer wanting to fire your agent, again the same rules apply. You need to have valid reasons with proof. Just because you have found another home and do not want your agent to gain from it or do not require his services based on your whims, then this is unethical and unacceptable. If you have signed a buyer’s agency agreement then you have to look up the details in this contract to see how you can end the same. Most agreements like this can be terminated by just putting it in writing but you need to check your contract for the details.
It is highly recommended to sit down and talk with your agent before taking any drastic measures. Even if the problem cannot be solved, a well-handled mature discussion may leave both parties with no hard feelings. If handled well, your agent may also feel like it would be best to terminate the contract and may even refer you to another agent. If the agency is handling the termination, they may be able to find you an agent who suits your personality and needs. The key is to remember that whatever you choose to do, you need to keep your calm if you want the best to happen.
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