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Can I cancel a listing agreement to rent out the house instead....do I owe anything?

We are in the middle of a 6 month contract to sell our home without having any significant interest.  We doubt we are going to be able to sell the home before the market slows down for the year.  We would like to remove our home from the market and rent it out instead.  Is that a possibility with the listing agreement?  What compensation is expected for the realtor?
  • July 08 2009 - Lexington
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Answers (5)

What does your listing agreement say?
  • September 24 2010
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Your contract is between your broker and you. You should read the terms of your contract and discuss this with your broker. Your broker has invested significant money and time in marketing your home based on a contract that you signed and agreed to. A release from such a contract is a decision that can only be made by the broker. You may consider offering to reimburse your broker for his cost.
  • September 24 2010
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first off, read your contract. What does it say if you cancel???

Then, talk to your agent. Most agents will cancel for nothing in order to keep your future business. If your agent is not in that category, do the following:
rent the home. It is still your home you can rent it if you choose.
Instruct your agent to remove the lockbox and the sign, place in the listing instructions that home will only be shown with 48 hours notice.
Then raise the price a whole bunch. It is your home, you have the right to set the selling price, and if you have little interest now, you will zero showings if you add 50k or so to the price...
  • July 21 2009
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Donna is right on the money.  You are required to pay your Realtor their  commission (usually 3%) of the list price in order to cancel the listing agreement, BUT most realtors if they want to keep your business in the future, will figure out something that will work for you.  They simply need to be compensated for the money and energy they put into selling it over the last 6 months... worst case, you need to see how long you signed the listing agreement for and let it sit on the market for the remainder of that time AND you can still find someone to rent it on a month to month basis until you figure it all out.

Stirling Gardner
(aka Hollywood Landlord)
EZ Landlord Forms
  • July 20 2009
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It is negociable.  Talk with your agent, explain the situation, and insure that you get a release with the contigencies spelled out with in the release.  You might be asked for some compensation...  however, hopefully your agent will be understanding to allow you to cancel the listing agreement with no compensation.   Another contigency that might be spelled out is that you can not SELL your home for the duration of the original listing agreement to any buyer that your property was shown to by the agency. Take the time to read your listing agreement...  you should find something in regards to your question with in the listing agreement...   I know our listing agreements do...  Have you considered asking the agency representing you to help you rent your home?  The agency can help with that....  You might also want to consider leaving your home on the market and on the rental market with the agency that is currently representing you.... and take the first, either a buyer interested in your property or a tenant interested in renting your property....  All in all....  contact the agent (or the broker in charge)....  there are other options in which they can explain to you.... 

Hope I have helped a little in answering your question.  And good luck .
  • July 09 2009
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