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Elizabeth Weintraub

What's an Average Term for a Listing Agreement?

By March 4, 2009

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I venture to guess that most home sellers don't pay a lot of attention to the length of time noted as their listing agreement term; they just sign the listing.

Maybe it's because lots of sellers think a 90-day listing is standard. Well, it's not. There is no standard listing term.

Sellers are free to negotiate the term of their listing, but don't ask an agent to list for 30 days unless the average DOM on market is a week or less. And the days of fast turnover, for most of the country, are history. Besides, if you mistrust or dislike your agent enough to limit market exposure through that agent to 30 days, you're better off looking for somebody else from the get-go. If you ask for a listing term of 30 days, don't expect the agent to spend any money on advertising or marketing, which is what will bring you the most market exposure and likely a higher price.

Here are several alternatives to choose from, plus reasons to increase or decrease the length of time your home is listed for sale. I've even built in a safeguard for agents who want to take longer listings and sellers who don't want to sign those longer-term agreements . . . read more about Listing Agreement Term.

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At the time of writing, Elizabeth Weintraub, DRE # 00697006, is a Broker-Associate at Lyon Real Estate in Sacramento, California.

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