hand signing a contract such as an estate agent contract

What length of estate agent contract should I sign for?

When choosing which estate agent to sell your property there are lots of factors to consider. What experience of the local area do they have? What is their track record of selling properties similar to yours?

People sometimes get persuaded by high valuations and promises of buyers just waiting to walk through your door. But one question you shouldn’t overlook is what length of contract you will be asked to sign for.

Check the small print

Even if you have already decided which agent to go with, always check the small print of the contract. Contact periods can range from 4 weeks to 4 months, depending on the agent. On the one hand, it is only reasonable to give an estate agent enough time to do their job. Drafting sales particulars, conducting viewings and managing negotiations all takes time. Potential purchasers may want to come back for a second or even a third viewing. They may have to wait for their own property to go under offer before they can proceed.

Having said that, as a seller you don’t want to get stuck with an under-performing agent. For most properties, the maximum interest is in the first few weeks. As your property comes onto the market, you’ll usually get an influx of viewers and have the highest chance of success. What will an agent be doing if your property is still on the market 2 months later, especially if they have other properties to sell? You don’t want to be tied to an agent who you feel isn’t giving you their best, when you could be moving on with a new estate agent and a fresh approach.

Don’t sign a contract for more than 8 weeks

We don’t recommend signing a contract for more than 8 weeks. This strikes the balance of giving enough time for an agent to do their job, whilst giving you the control to move on if they don’t deliver. Your agent should be confident that they can achieve what they say and work hard to keep your custom.

Why not check out our FAQs for answers to questions such as this to help get your property sale moving?

From our Check 4 Houses head office in Fleet, we sell properties in Fleet, Farnborough, AldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateleyFarnham and beyond. We can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation of your property.