- Cons of Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
- Benefits of Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
- Best Practices When Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
- Making Your Decision: Is It Right for You?
- Choose One Quality Real Estate Agent Instead of Multiple Agents
Can You Work with Multiple Real Estate Agents?
When it’s time to sell your house, you want to get the highest price for the property and work with a buyer who moves quickly toward the closing process. Some homeowners reach out to real estate agents they can trust to secure potential buyers while others consider hiring multiple agents at the same time.
At first glance, hiring multiple real estate agents might seem like a better value. You would have multiple experts for your property helping to find the best possible buyers. However, there are several drawbacks to hiring multiple agents – and you might actually hurt your home sale process.
In this article, we’ll share about the process of hiring multiple real estate agents, along with the risks that come with doing so.
Cons of Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
There are several reasons why you shouldn’t hire more than one real estate agent to help you sell your home.
Taking on multiple agents can cause conflicts with buyers, harm the reputation of agents, and exhaust you as a seller. Plus, these efforts might not even be effective.
Here are three reasons why you shouldn’t work with multiple real estate agents.
The biggest reason why you don’t want to work with multiple real estate agents is that you will have two or three different people doing the same job. There is one group of people who your real estate agents are looking to target: buyers who are interested in your area. Real estate marketing is mostly standardized so that agents are able to promote houses easily and buyers are able to find them.
For example, your real estate agent should list your property on the multiple listing service (MLS) which shares its information across a variety of sites like Zillow and Realtor.com. These two sites are where the majority of buyers find homes.
In fact, 67% of U.S. home buyers used Zillow in 2021. If one agent has already placed your home on the MLS, there’s no reason for another to add it again – and they might not even be able to. Buyers can easily spot duplicate listings and will ignore your property’s posts.
It’s unlikely that multiple agents will find different groups of buyers for your home. Instead, trust one quality real estate agent to find buyers for you.
Real estate agents don’t get paid until the home sells. If multiple agents represent your home, they are working for free until the buyer closes on the deal.
This creates ethical problems if your agents think they have exclusive rights to sell your property. They might think they are getting paid at some point and don’t realize that another agent could take their commission if they find a buyer first.
If you decide to work with multiple agents, make sure you are transparent about the fact. Some real estate agents might not risk working for free when they could find another seller who wants to hire them exclusively.
Hiring multiple real estate agents also creates more work for you. It’s not uncommon for agents to talk to their clients at least daily – if not multiple times per day.
While it might only take a few minutes to answer a text message, this time adds up when you are juggling multiple agents. You will have to keep in touch with each agent and communicate any updates about the home sale. As soon as there is news with one real estate agent, you will have to share it with the others.
At best, this relationship management is time-consuming. At worst, it’s frustrating for all parties involved.
Benefits of Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
Despite the risks that come with hiring multiple real estate agents, there are times when you might want to hire different real estate agents to work on the same property.
This most commonly occurs in properties that are difficult to sell. If you own a fixer-upper, an expansive mansion, or a famous home (like one from a horror movie), you might need to hire multiple agents who can actively seek out buyers.
Access to a Broader Market
While most real estate agents will have an overlapping buyer pool, there are times when two agents can reach different audiences and work with diverse groups of buyers. This usually occurs when agents are working with real estate investors, as they might know different investing groups or buyer opportunities to pair sellers with.
If you don’t think a single agent will be able to find people who are interested and qualified to buy your home, consider adding different agents to your team. Find real estate agents who have different experience levels and work with different brokerages to see how they perform.
Specialization and Expertise
While there usually isn’t a good reason to hire more than one real estate agent to sell a standard middle-class home, you might want to work with many real estate agents if you have a complex property that is difficult to sell. A few examples include:
- Mansions and expensive homes, especially those associated with celebrities.
- Houses that need major repairs, like those destroyed after a major storm.
- Unique houses that have maintenance and design requirements, like historic homes or properties designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.
- Properties with small buyers markets, like undeveloped land in rural areas.
If your home falls into any of these categories, you might benefit from working with multiple agents.
Some real estate agents specialize in finding celebrities find homes while others have built their expertise in pairing sellers with investors.
Increased Attention and Availability
While taking on multiple real estate agents means you have to manage multiple relationships, it also means you are more likely to have someone available when you need them. If you have any questions or issues, at least one agent should be available to help you.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you need to hire competing real estate professionals to work with you. Many real estate agents have teams that work together to support clients. This way, if one agent needs a day off, their partner or assistant will be on call to address your concerns.
Best Practices When Working with Multiple Real Estate Agents
If you decide that working with more than one real estate broker is the best course of action to sell your home, there are a few steps you can take to make sure the process goes smoothly. Follow these best practices so everyone is on the same page and doing their best to secure a home purchase.
When you first meet with a real estate agent, let them know that you plan to work with other agents. They will then decide whether they want to continue working with you as a client. Hiring many agents isn’t common in the real estate industry, which means some of these professionals might be put off by the idea. It is better to be transparent about the number of agents you plan to hire and why you want to work with other agents at the same time.
From there, you can decide how involved various agents are with each other’s work. One real estate agent might want to know who else you hired and partner with that real estate agent while others might be find working on their own. This relationship depends on whether the agents are competing against each other to find a buyer and earn a commission.
Communication is a key part of working with any real estate professional and is essential if you want to work with multiple agents. Each person needs to know their role, who they can work with, and the types of buyers you want to sell to. You also need to set clear home value for the property. No seller wants their agent bringing in low-balling buyers which would cause them to lose money on the sale.
Your real estate consultant and the agents you hire are on your side. As long as everyone knows the rules of the game, they can play fairly together.
Discussing Commission Structures
Real estate is a commission-based job and many agents feel like they are wasting time by working with a client that has hired multiple real estate agents. As long as there is a risk that the agent won’t earn money on their work, there isn’t a high desire to take on the project. This is also why working with multiple agents mostly occurs with luxury properties. The high risk that comes with taking on the job could come with a big reward.
Make sure all of the agents you work with are on the same page for commissions. Typically, the real estate agent who brings in a buyer receives the payment when the transaction closes. If the buyer backs out, the agent doesn’t get paid.
All of your agents need to receive the same information before moving forward with the home sale. That way everyone agrees to the same terms and has a fair chance of selling the house.
Exclusivity Agreements and What They Mean
Many agents won’t agree to work with you if you hire other real estate agents to manage your home. When you first talk to a listing agent, ask if they have an exclusivity agreement and who has to sign it. This exclusive contract gives the current agent you are working with the rights to sell your property. It is their job to find a buyer and collect a commission once the deal closes. This is sometimes known as an agency agreement as well.
As a seller, you have multiple options when faced with an exclusive contract. You can talk to your agent about not signing it and explain why you plan to hire multiple real estate agents. You can also agree to the exclusive contract and then end your relationship with your real estate agent if they can’t find a buyer. Most of these contracts last 60 to 120 days. If your home isn’t under contract by that deadline, you can terminate the agreement.
If you have already signed an exclusive contract, then you cannot work with multiple real estate agents. However, if you have not, you can talk to all parties involved about moving forward without exclusivity.
Making Your Decision: Is It Right for You?
There is one instance where it is perfectly normal to work with multiple real estate agents at the same time: when you are selling in one city and buying in the next. If you need to sell your house in Vermont while buying another one in Maryland at the same time, you can’t expect the same real estate agent to handle both transactions. This is also an instance where you don’t need your agents to know about each other or collaborate together. Both parties are working on separate transactions.
You can also work with multiple real estate agents if you are buying and selling in the same city. You might hire an agent to sell your house and decide you don’t want to work with them again in the buying process. Make sure you are clear with your agent that you plan to move forward with another real estate agent after you sell, that way they don’t start looking at available properties for you to buy.
Outside of these two instances, there are very few reasons why it would be appropriate to work with multiple real estate agents. However, if you fall into one of the categories discussed earlier (you own a fixer-upper or a notable home), this path might be for you.
Choose One Quality Real Estate Agent Instead of Multiple Agents
It is highly unlikely that you would benefit from working with more than one agent in the buying or selling process. Asking two real estate agents to compete against each other won’t be as effective as hiring a single person who you trust.
In fact, you might lose the opportunity to work with high-quality agents because they don’t believe in competing for commission.
Take your time researching and interviewing prospective agents so you feel confident hiring one person. Start with FastExpert. We can help you find highly-rated real estate professionals who have the experience you need to navigate the selling or home-buying process. Check out our website today and see who is currently working near you.
The best advice you can get in real estate is that quality is better than quantity. All you need is a partner you can trust, not a team of agents fighting against each other for their pay.