We signed an exclusive right to sell agreement with an agent. We are only 3 months into a 6 month contract

Asked by jweirton, Rochester, MI Tue Jul 14, 2009

and it appears the agent is doing the bare minimum compared to what I see other sales persons doing to sell properties. I have made suggestions but nothing happens. There have been only a few showings. I know the market is slow in our price range, but when I look at the homes that have sold in our area in the past few months, several have sold. WHAT can we do? By the time this contract expires the selling season will be over.

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Keith Sorem, Agent, Glendale, CA
Tue Jul 14, 2009
Statistically we know that 90% of the time the buyer that purchases your home will be represented by another Realtor. So, that means that if you are not getting any showing activity, it is not that all of the buyers are on vacation.

They are buying other homes that show the most value. That means that you have a choice. Either lower the price to increase the value, or add some of features that a buyer will perceive to be added value.

The rule of thumb is 10-12 showings or one offer in two weeks or lower the price.

Good luck.
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Ed & Cindy K…, Agent, Shelby Township, MI
Tue Jul 14, 2009
Although many sellers tend to blame their agent for no showings the truth is if your home shows well, is priced great, exposed on the web and in the local MLS - your home is available to thousands and thousands of agents and buyers. Being in Rochester you are on the county boarder so you should be in both MLS systems giving you even more exposure. How do your photos look? Are they clear, are there several, how do they show your home? Buyers look on line before ever going out to view homes. How's your price compare to others?

Many people say call the broker/manager but as one I can tell you that your best contact is with your agent directly. Tell him/her what you are looking for from them and find out why they are not doing it. When you say bare minimum the extras you are looking at may be things that other agents are doing to appease the seller but they may not actually work. For instance many agents use flyer boxes, brochures in the home, open houses. Whereas your agent may be working behind the scenes getting your home exposed on the web in several sites and you may not know it. As Lee said Communication is the Key.

Talk to your agent before you look for another.
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St. Peter, Agent, Raleigh, NC
Tue Jul 14, 2009
Communication is key - as in any business relationship. May I suggest that you invite your agent over for coffee and ask them to bring along the marketing strategy they have prepared for getting your home sold for you to review. Then sit down with them and take a look at what they are doing - maybe - just maybe they are doing more behind the scenes than what you are aware of. Let's hope so.

If however after discussing with them what they have done and what they plan on doing you are still not satisfied tell them so. I'm sure the other Agents here would agree with me in that if someone isn't happy with what I'm doing I certainly don't want to force them to work with me. If your listing contracts are like ours it is with the agency - not the particular agent so perhaps you could arrange something with the company.

Good luck and please keep us posted!
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Dmitry Koubl…, , 48009
Tue Jul 14, 2009
First off, a "good news". I don't think you should worry about the selling season: the market won't be much slower than it is nowadays :). The so-called "Spring phenomenon" when there's a seasonal splash of the market activity hasn't been around since 2006.

More seriously: I don't know your particular situation but it is always a good idea of asking every agent you are interviewing to present you a written marketing strategy. In our practice, my wife and I do it routinely because a) we are not afraid to put our word in writing and b) we want to be on the same page with clients in terms of what will be done and how. There are agents who are natural-born schmoozers and sales pitch throwers but who, upon securing a listing, don't do anything besides that simple "MLS+sign+Realtor.com" thing. If you don't have something in writing from your agent, it's very easy to get confused about certain things, including what exactly constitues "bare minimum".

Good luck in selling your home!
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Gail Corcoran, Agent, Royal Oak, MI
Tue Jul 14, 2009
Would you be comfortable calling the agent's manager with your concerns? I am willing he/she will be very concerned about the agent's activities (or lack of) also. The next (3) things that could possibly happen with this action are:

1) A talk between the manager and agent resulting in improved performance
2) A reassignment of agents for servicing of your listing OR
3) If all else will fail, an unconditional withdrawal of the listing (most managers try to avoid this at all costs)

As for price, it would seem your listing price may be too high for similar homes in your square mile. Did your agent present you with comprehensive data to help you determine your list price? If so, did you incorporate the data into your calculation of the price?

Another thought - did you perhaps ask your agent for a reduced commission? Many times agents will agree to this request from a seller but on the other hand will silently "reduce" the amount of work to be performed to help promote the sale. This could be happening as well.

And so, your problem MAY be either (or a combination) of having a high priced listing or of having insufficient marketing exposure.
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Michael Thom…, Agent, Lambertville, MI
Tue Jul 14, 2009
Read your listing contract very carefully..most have a provision that the contract can be cancelled in writing at any time by either party. There may be fees associated with cancelling earlier in the contract as well. Start there...

Then, yes go to the broker--as a practical matter don't expect much. As all active agents and associate brokers are independent contractors the broker is limited on their recourse as well.

Lastly, talk to your agent, don't hedge tell them you're displeased and why and let them know you're thinking of cancelling...may be enough to get you what you want.
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Derek Bauer, Agent, South Lyon, MI
Tue Jul 14, 2009
That is unfortunate. Your first point-of-contact should be the broker / manager of the office. Hopefully it can be resolved there, as your contract is with the broker, not the agent. They may shift you to someone else in the brokerage ... or they may allow you to terminate the listing.

Yes, there are certain price ranges that are slower than others, and not every home is going to sell ... but that is no excuse.
Web Reference:  http://DoorToDreams.com
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