Listing Your Home
There are several different types of listing contracts when it comes time to sell your house. Most common for realtors is the Exclusive Right to Sell, and for home owners that want to pay the least amount in commissions it’s the Open Listing that hits the top of the list. Here are the most common types and why they may or may not make the most sense for you.
The most common for home sellers that don’t want to pay a commission the sell their house is the Open Listing. A home owner might be willing to work with an agent, and should that agent sell their home they earn a commission. This type of listing means that the home may be considered a listing by multiple agents, and therefore none of the agents are willing to list the home on the MLS or market it to seller agents. Should your home fit the criteria their clients are looking for they may show it, but don’t expect much more than that. Your home is essentially for sale by owner (FSBO) with an Open Listing.
Similar to the Open Listing, and includes a contract between the agent and the homeowner guaranteeing the agent a commission should a buyer they showed the house to purchase the home. This protects the agents interests in that it prohibits the buyer and seller from negotiating directly and avoiding paying the agent’s commission. Again, don’t expect the agent to market the home and it will not be placed on the MLS.
An unpopular listing agreement is the Exclusive Agency Listing since it guarantees a real estate agent commission if the house sells through any real estate agent or brokerage. They will list and market your home, but since they aren’t guaranteed a commission if you find a buyer, or if a buyer works directly with you negotiating a price and cutting out the agent, they are out marketing costs with no commission. Most agents that accept such a listing will do little more than list the home in the MLS.
This is the most preferred type of listing for agents, and the most common for homeowners that are serious about selling their home. It is the quickest way to sell your home and receive full service from a listing agent. The Exclusive Right to Sell does not mean there is no other agent that can or will be involved in the transaction, but it means that your listing agent will actively and aggressively market your home with other agents and buyers. Even if you sell your home yourself, the agent earns a commission. Expect your agent to not only place the listing in the MLS, but also to hold open houses, market to other agents, and advertise to buyers. Of course, the agent and their company still must perform, by selling your home, in order to get paid.
The MLS is a data feed of available homes that shows on public facing websites and to other agents around the Las Vegas Valley. If you are serious about selling your home, being listed on the MLS is within your best interests. Your sales force becomes not only agents and brokerages, but also every individual searching the MLS from the desktop or mobile devices. Essentially it places your home within a network of buyers and agents searching for properties to buy. It gets more recognition which increases your chances of being purchased faster and at a higher price.
The last thing homeowners want to do when selling their home is pay the 6-7.5% of their home value in transaction related expenses. Part of negotiating with an agent that wants to sell your home is the related commissions. When negotiating the agent commission, keep in mind that there are almost always multiple agents involved in the transaction and the amount negotiated is split between them, not multiplied by them. Make sure to ask your agent if they will be listing your home on the MLS and what other services you will be tied to, if any. Know exactly what you are tying yourself into in a contract, and be aware of other services you may need past the contract terms to get a true idea of what the costs of selling your house will be when it is all said and done.