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Sole Agency, Joint Sole Agency or Multi Agency?

29/04/19Sole Agency, Joint Sole Agency or Multi Agency?

Buying and selling a house is no mean feat. It is often said that buying and selling property is one of the most stressful situations faced in modern life. What’s more, the choice you face when finally deciding to use an agent to market and sell the property can be equally as stressful. You may have heard the phrases Sole Agency, Joint Sole Agency or Multi Agency bandied about. What’s the difference and what are the pros and cons of each one?

Sole agency is where one agent has exclusive marketing rights of the property. The benefits of going with a sole agent are lower commission fees and a more fluid and concentrated marketing campaign. Downsides may include less market coverage and the potential for a sole agent to become a little complacent.

Joint Sole Agency is where two agents “share” commission, irrespective of who finds the buyer. The share of commission can vary percentage-wise. The benefits of joint sole agency are two agents having access to more contacts, who may be prospective purchasers. It provides a wider marketing campaign and a local agent may be used with a larger more established national firm. Possible negatives may be two separate adverts appearing online. There may also be two separate For Sale boards. This can create the illusion that the seller is a little desperate to sell the property. Having to raise the level of fees to make provision for both agents taking a share of the commission can also be a downside. Another potential pitfall of a Joint Sole Agency is that agents may take the view that they will receive commission no matter if they find the buyer or not. This can have a knock-on effect that some agents may not work as hard to achieve a sale.

Multi Agency is the terminology for two or more agents acting on the basis whereby the agent who sells the property earns the commission. The obvious benefit here is that two or more agents have an incentive to work as hard as possible to produce a sale, as well as wide market coverage. Unfortunately, many agents may not be interested in acting on such a basis as there is no guarantee that they will earn a fee. There may be discrepancies between agents’ adverts, leading to potential confusion among would-be buyers.

Our advice would be to decide which type of agency suits your needs best following the general principles. Read the terms of business sent by the agent to make sure they meet your needs and requirements. Contact us to discuss your needs.

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