Sole and multiple agency
Most people wanting to sell their property via an estate agent start by appointing a single agent – an arrangement known as ‘sole agency’. Here the appointed agent is the only estate agent with the right to sell your property.
With this arrangement you are still free to sell privately. So if a friend or relative wanted to buy your house, even though it’s on the market with an estate agent, you should still be OK selling privately – as long as the buyer wasn’t introduced by your estate agent.
In a recent blog we also looked at multiple agency – this often comes about when sellers get a bit desperate and decide to appoint a second or third estate agent working in competition to sell the same property. Here the agent who successfully introduces a buyer gets 100% of the commission.
There are however 2 other possible arrangements:-
Joint sole agency
Here you appoint 2 agents who co-operate with one another. Both agents share commission, usually with the lion’s share going to the agent that actually introduces the buyer and therefore can genuinely claim to have sold the property. It is sometimes used as an alternative to multiple agency, perhaps when a property sale is struggling. Commission rates are usually a little higher than for sole agency.
Sole selling rights
This is the one to avoid. It means the estate agent is the only person with the right to sell your property. It differs from sole agency in that if the property sells to a buyer you found yourself, you still have to pay the estate agent. So if for example you decided to sell to a friend or family member, the agent could still claim thousands in fees. Essentially this arrangement blocks you from having a go at selling privately.
Our next blog – coming soon ……
Estate agents fees
Check out our Rightsurvey blog page for more industry tips and secrets written by property professionals to help put you in control.