my contract expired July 15 with my agent. she has a protection period of 30 days. will I owe her a commission if I sell my house to another agent in?

Asked by Izzie, Kempner, TX Wed Jul 21, 2010

the state of texas?

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Guy Gimenez, Agent, Austin, TX
Wed Jul 21, 2010
Did that agent/buyer visit your home during YOUR listing agent's listing term? If not, your previous agent may have a hard time proving the agent/buyer found your property through their marketing efforts.
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Stephanie K, Agent, San Antonio, TX
Thu Jul 22, 2010
If your listing agreement was written on Texas Association of Realtors Form (TAR 1101), and you have exclusively re-listed the home with another broker who is a member of TAR, then you don't need to worry. Just carefully read Section 5E. It explains everything. There are rules requiring the broker to give you a list of potential buyers that have seen the property, etc.

If you haven't relisted with another agent, then you should wait 30 days before doing anything to avoid paying commissions. Honestly, IMHO, if you haven't re-listed and can afford it, just wait it out if you are trying to do this yourself. You will avoid alot of trouble should the 1st agent decide to pursue procuring cause.

If you are planning to re-list - read that paragraph and if you feel comfortable, full speed ahead! Good Luck!

Stephanie Kelley, ABR, CRS, GRI
Keller Williams, Legacy
0 votes
Great article. Thanks for the info, you made it easy to understand. BTW, if anyone needs to fill out a TAR 1101, I found a blank fillable form here This site PDFfiller also has some tutorials on how to fill it out and a few related real estate forms that you might find useful.
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Don Groff, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu Jul 22, 2010
As it has been said. You would only owe the commission if an individual who viewed the property during the listing agreement viewed the property. If you list with another agent and a client who viewed the property before makes an offer then you would be responsible. So discuss this with your new agent. It is unlikely and honestly may be hard to even know or prove. As agents we get notifications when the home is being shown but I do not ask for the names of all people who view the property. I do not have time to do things like that. I make sure I do my job and educate the buyer upfront so I will not lose the listing.

Make sure you have a long serious discussion with your new agent. Let them know what happened or didn't happen during the previous listing period. Too many agents take listings with prices that are not supported by the market. Although I never set the price of a listing myself (it's not my money or equity) I educate my clients to what the market will support so they will know first hand what range the home needs to be listed in to attract activity and a sale for top dollar.

If a client wants to way overprice a home I will typically not take that listing. If they want to price higher than the range I have shown them I will have a serious discussion of what the steps are to be taken should we not solicit offers in the first 10 days.

These types of conversations are critical when establishing trust and a good relationship with your clients. Everybody needs to be on the same page and understand the market. 90% of my homes are under contract in less than 45 days because of the time I take to educate clients on market conditions. As I have stated in other questions I am now taking my listing clients more and more often to view other homes for sale that will be their direct competition. Homes need to be priced correctly and be in the best possible condition inside and out to solicit a good offer in the shortest possible period of time.

Good luck with the sale of your home and make sure you have these conversations with your new agent. You can read my blog articles on my website and on Trulia where I talk about this in greater detail.
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Stacy Carter, Agent, Roswell, GA
Wed Jul 21, 2010
The protection period is intended to protect agents from sellers who cancel their contracts so they can sell directly to a buyer without having to pay the commission. So, for 30 days, if you sell the home to a buyer who viewed the property during your agent's listing period, you would owe that agent a commission.

The premise is sound, since the buyer would not have known about the property without the agent's marketing, therefore the agent is considered the "procuring cause". If you sign with another agent, and a previous buyer comes back, you could be faced with having to pay both agents.

Stacy Carter
Associate Broker
Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate Metro Brokers
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