What should I expect if I change listing agents?

Asked by C_c_b_l_39, Saint Louis, MO Thu Jan 1, 2009

My home has been for sale almost 6 months and I'm considering choosing a new realtor. My main reason is that my agent isn't very aggressive for this type of market. If I change realtors, how soon can I re-list my house, and how does this affect the CDOM? Would my house have to be off the market for a certain amount of time before it would reset the days on market? It's a little awkward to ask my agent this question, so I would appreciate any knowledgeable advice. The home is located in South St. Louis city. Thank you.

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Keith Sorem, Agent, Glendale, CA
Sun Jan 4, 2009
I have read the other posts, all people trying to help you with good advice.

There is only one thing you are missing.
If you look at the link below, the market values in your town are going DOWN. 30% in the last year.

So why your have caused your home not sell (because you set the price), you are blaming the Realtor?
How do I know? Because the same link shows that almost 5,000 homes have sold recently. So other homes are selling and not yours, what could the problem be?

Buyers buy VALUE. Value is most easily added by lowering the price. The are other things to do. but in your case I would be worried about losing more money.

The CDOM will stay with the property. Change agents, do what you like, it's your record. But even if it were a NEW listing, if it were over-priced, it would not sell anyway.

The questions I would pose to your agent are:
Since my property hit the market, how many homes, like mine, have:
come onto the market
lowered their price

Then ask them what it will take to get your home sold.

Good luck.
2 votes
Dale Weir, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Thu Jan 1, 2009
OK, you have to CANCEL or TERMINATE the listing agreement with the current agent & BROKER in writing (the listing is technically with the broker, not with the agent. Most brokers are good about letting you terminate a listing, a few are not & will make you wait until the contract period is up). You can relist the same day (in reality, another agent cannot initiate a conversation with you about listing while you are listed already - but YOU can initiate the conversation), as soon as you have cancelled the first listing. However, and this is very serious, You must be certain that your listing has been registered with the MARIS database as cancelled for 60 days & your home does not go into the database until the 61st day for days on market to go back to zero. You can cancel your listing today, but if the computer doesn't get updated & the new agent puts you in the computer as a new listing 59 days after the old agent takes you out, days on market continue to count. The 60th day is kind of a limbo day, so it is best to wait 61 days.

I do agree that you should talk to the agent first & discuss with them why you don't fee that they are being agressive enough. Be prepared for an honest discussion. In this market, it is not just marketing, it's also how your home is positioned in the market. How does your home stand out from the competition? Are you priced correctly? Is your home fixed up better than the competing homes? Have your current agent do a CMA to show you how you stand compared to your competition (not just the solds) and then ask to be taken on a tour of your competition. Honestly look at your home's faults against your competition - what can't you correct - busy street, steep yard/no yard, no garage when neighbors have one, not as desirable neighborhood, etc. Then look at what you may be able to correct - does your home need a bit of staging enhancement; do you need to seriously clean or repaint an area; leaking basement; check curb appeal?, etc. Seriously look at where homes are actually selling , not just where you want to sell at or feel that you need to sell at. You must work with your agent to position your home for success.

Now, I just did the stats for the St Louis metro area to send out to my clients (I have a lot of South City clients) and I'd like to give you a few numbers to think about:
in 2004, in the SW area of the city 1829 homes were sold; 812 didn't sell; ave list price was $131,034; ave sales price was 127,526; ave days on market was 48. In 2006 that changed to 1650 homes sold; 1350 didn't sell; $142,570 for the ave list price and $138,264 for the ave sales price; Days on market was 65. In 2008 (through middle of Dec) that became 1304 homes sold; 1199 didn't sell; ave list price $133,329; ave sales price $127,665; ave days on market of 87. These numbers are from the MLS systems so foreclosures & short sales are included in these numbers but fsbos are not.

When you talk to a realtor, ask what they do vs what their company does. Ask how they personalize their typical marketing plan for your home and your needs. You will definately need on line exposure since the first viewing any more are virtual on line, not in person in your home. Realtors may tell you that they will list on over a thousand websites, but in reality, once your home is in the multilist (MARIS) database all the local brokerages and realtors who have the shared IDX listings on their websites will pick it up and have it, so that's how they get those high numbers. Some will list on the many for free websites out there, but many of those sites really don't have any traffic. You want to be on line, but you want to be on Realtor.com with an enhanced listing (multiple pictures), on Trulia, Yahoo, Google - the biggies where the buyers are. The big brokerages in town pay for that kind of exposure for you. Being on the little bitty sites where no one goes unless you specifically direct them to the site doesn't do you any good.

There are a lot of us out here who can help you, but seriously, I don't know who your realtor is, but I would suggest that you talk to them first. They have invested time and money in your home already. They want to get it sold as much as you do. Talk to them about your frustration and work together - you might want to consider taking the home off the market for 61 days then relisting with the same agent to get your days on market down to zero and during those 61 days work with your agent to breathe new life into both the marketing campaign and after viewing your competition (it will have changed from when you listed your home 6 months ago) updating your home to better win the beauty contest and take home the winning buyer. If when you talk to your agent, they aren't receptive, then give several of us a call and let us come talk to you about our marketing campaigns and how we would help you to position your home to get it sold. Then decide. Good luck!
Web Reference:  http://www.YourSTLHome.com
1 vote
Sheila Worley, Agent, Saint Charles, MO
Thu Jan 22, 2009
First of all, I am sorry to hear that you are not having success with the sale of your home. As an active realtor, I can tell you that homes that are listed absolutely have to be aggressively marketed. You cannot list a home and let it set hoping it will sell. That would be a Realtors dream come true. I have been approached many of times by sellers in the same situation as you are. Luckily, they were able to get out of their listing agreement and I was able to step in. It is a touchy situation. I can imagine how you feel to have to go behind your Realtors back to get your questions answered. To answer your question, your home should not be listed in the MLS for 60 days in order to reset your days. You are free to market it in other ways during that time frame. I wish you success with your home selling process.

Sheila Gerken-Worley
The Best Seller GMAC Real Estate
direct 636-299-1884
0 votes
Dale Weir, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Fri Jan 2, 2009
Absolutely, Bob. I have a home now that we are getting ready to do just that with. The minute we are certain that the old listing is truly canceled, the seller will sign the new listing agreement with me and an MLS exempt form for work to be done by the seller on the home. We will then go through the home and ensure that it is really ready to go on the market - taking care of any wear and tear that had crept up on it during the first listing period and staging it to show and sell. Meanwhile, the sign will be in the yard, I'm planning Sunday open houses and a full marketing package for the home, my office will be scheduling showings when interested buyers call in from the sign in the yard and the marketing that we've done - everything but having the home in the main MARIS database. At the end of the 61 day period (when days on market will revert to zero), the home will go back in the MARIS database and be ready for the Spring Market, if it isn't already sold.
Web Reference:  http://www.YourSTLHome.com
0 votes
Bob Waters, Agent, Chesterfield, MO
Fri Jan 2, 2009
You have received some great advice from most of those who have previously answered your question. Dale Weir has done a great job. One piece that I would like to add is that you can sign a listing agreement before the 60 day resting period. In fact, you can sign it immediatley after the current listing is cancelled or expires. Then also have your agent give you an MLS exempt form to sign which gives your agent the ability to speak to other agents before the next lisitng period and or show your home to a perspective client during that same 60 day period of non MLS listing. You might find that your next agent may sell your home even before you officially relist on the MLS. Good Luck!!
Web Reference:  http://BobWatersHomes.com
0 votes
Fred Romano, Agent, Servicing All, CT
Thu Jan 1, 2009
At the end of your listing term (once it's expired) you can relist. Try using a Flat Fee Broker and save at least 1/2 the commission. Maybe you can reduce the price more by going this route, which would make your house sell faster.
Web Reference:  http://ctflatfee.com
0 votes
Ronald Gorman, Agent, St Louis, MO
Thu Jan 1, 2009
As an agent, I feel that it is unethical for another agent to even approach you at this point. I believe that you should have a discussion with your current agent to discuss the issues that of concern to you. If that agent doesn't feel that he(she) can meet your expectations it, that agent may agree that the listing agreement should be terminated. If you still feel that you wish to make a change in representation, ask the agent for a signed release. If the agent refuses, you will have to sit tight until the termination of the listing agreement. Yes, your home has to be off the market for 60 days to be able to relist it with no days on the market.

But, I strongly urge that you and your present agent have an understanding of why your homes hasn't sold.

Ronald Gorman
Web Reference:  http://www.stlcityhomes.com
0 votes
Daniel, , Baton Rouge, LA
Thu Jan 1, 2009
houses take a certain amount of time to sell, thats the fact

changing listing agent will not sell your home any faster
0 votes
Howard McAul…, , Saint Louis, MO
Thu Jan 1, 2009
You can relist your house as soon as the agent signs a termination agreement. If they won't sign it then you will have to wait until the end of the listing agreement. I believe that the house has to be unlisted for 60 days before CDOM resets even if you change realtors. Make sure that your expectations are reasonable. While there certainly are agents that are not good, this market is difficult. Make sure your price expectations reflect the current market and whatever agent you choose actively markets your home, especially online
0 votes
tom "TJ" rob…, Agent, dublin, OH
Thu Jan 1, 2009
Show me ccb1 39,You can cancel present,have new sign up tomorrow,and show 1 DOM.Good luck.should be fine in 09!


Web Reference:  http://tjroberts.remax.com
0 votes
Terry Willis, Agent, O Fallon, MO
Thu Jan 1, 2009
You can relist your house immediately after cancelling your listing with your present Realtor, however the new listing will carry forward the past days on market unless you leave it out of the MLS for 60 days. A Realtor can still put it on other web sites and do all other types of marketing during this 60 day period. Many experienced Realtors will check the past history of the listing in the MLS if their client has interest, and discover the past days on the market anyway. In the present buyer's market CDOM doesn't carry as much "scare" weight as it does in a seller's market.
Depending on your location in South St. Louis City it may be hard for any buyer to get a loan as lenders seem to be making it quite difficult lately in areas of high foreclosure risks, which makes marketing even more important to find a buyer who can pass the lenders standards, but could also take longer. In the last year my listings for sale (not rental advertised) in South STL City seem to be attracting more rental inquiries than buying inquiries through the calls from the "more info" sign posted in the yards. You need to find out what the average days on the market is until receiving an accepted contract for your area, condition, size, type and price of home and what type of advertising your Realtor is currently doing to make an informed decision. You can visit my web site to see the types of marketing I do to compare. You can also contact me through the email link on my web site if you have any further questions or to discuss your home and situation in greater detail or if you would like a market analysis of your property.
Web Reference:  http://www.TerryWillis.net
0 votes
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