I’m hearing this on a lot of forums lately by consumers.
“How do I fire my agent?”
“Can I change Realtors?”
“Agents suck.” (okay no one really said this one, but that is what the poster really meant)
The fact is that you are paying someone a lot of money to provide you a service. You should be satisfied (not overbearing, mind you).
The fact is that most people avoid conflict. They hate it. They don’t like to confront other people, so they just “grit their teeth and bear it.” The problem is that selling a house should not be as painful as childbirth. While it is stressful, working with a professional agent makes a difference.
So what do you do when you don’t like your agent?
1) Read your contract. I bet many of you have never read your real estate listing/buyer agency contract. This may come back to bite you in a very big way. Whether or not you can terminate your contract with your real estate agent is contained within the small print.
2) Contracts are actually with the real estate brokerage’s principal broker and NOT the individual agent (unless your agent is the broker in charge). So, if you really don’t like your agent, call the principal broker and demand a new one. Tell them you aren’t satisfied with the service you are receiving from them and want a new agent. They will typically assign a new agent to serve you or release you from the contract.
3) If your contract allows you to terminate, write your agent an email if you can’t handle talking to them. Make the message brief such as “I have decided that I need a different agent. Please give me the paperwork to terminate our contract.” We have been so ingrained in our society to not hurt others feelings (I’m not saying go out and hurt people’s feelings here) that we do that at our expense. You have a business relationship with your agent. People get talked into staying in the relationship with the agent when they start talking too much. Real estate is a service-oriented profession so we want feedback about what didn’t work for you. You can say “I’d be happy to go into more details with you about what wasn’t working for me after we are terminated.” Then, tell the agent what you really thought. While you might feel like you are hurting their feelings, it will help them to be better professionals.
Remember that selling your home is really stressful. Yes, you may hurt an agent’s feelings by firing them BUT are you willing to cause yourself MORE stress in order to avoid the conflict.