Selling a home in Chicago involves a lot of documents. From deeds to escrow agreements to title insurance to sales contracts, your signing hand will get a workout throughout the process. But if you are getting ready to put your home on the market, one of the first pieces of paper you’ll see is the agreement between yourself and the real estate agent you’ve decided is the person best suited to get your house sold quickly and for top dollar.

Called a listing agreement, your contract with your agent is the document that will govern your relationship through closing. It defines the parties’ rights and obligations. It grants the agent authority to take the necessary steps to list and sell your home. It determines how much all brokers involved will earn in commissions when your house sells.

Given how much your listing agreement will impact how the sales process proceeds and how much money winds up in your pocket, it is important that you understand what it is and what it means.

Exclusive Right To Sell Listing Agreement

The most commonly used agreement in Chicago between agents and sellers is called an Exclusive Right To Sell Listing Agreement. This binding contract was developed by the Chicago Association of Realtors and is the gold standard for listing agreements in Chicago.

As the name implies, the contract gives the agent sole and exclusive control over the transaction. That means no other realtor can get involved on your behalf during the sales process. The document provides the agent with the right to market the home, list on MLS, arrange for showings and open houses, and take all other steps deemed advisable to help sell your house.

Here are some of the key components of listing agreements in Chicago:

  • Seller Name
  • Brokerage Name
  • Property Address
  • Price
  • Listing Term
  • Designated Agent
  • List Date
  • Coming Soon or Pre Market Authorization
  • Sales Commission
  • Listing Fee
  • Disclosure of Multiple Offers
  • Dual Agency Agreement
  • Property Information
  • Signatures and Dates
  • Appendix Items – Lease Commission, Termination, Fair Housing Act, Website Comments and Reviews, Lock Box, Wire Fraud
  • MRED Exemption Authorization – if the property is not listed on the MLS within 48 hours of the listing agreement execution
  • PLN Authorization – if the property is put on the Private Listing Network

Other Documents

  • Lead-Based Paint Disclosure (for properties built before 1978) – this will be used when the property goes “under contract”
  • Radon Disclosure (for properties on the second floor or lower) – this will be used when the property goes “under contract”
  • Real Property Disclosure Report – this will be used when the property goes “under contract”

Why Sign An Exclusive Listing Agreement?

If you want to give yourself the best chance to sell your home at the optimal price in the shortest time, an exclusive listing agreement is the best option. Your agent only gets paid if they bring a buyer to the table and the sale closes during the contract term.

Unless you have a buyer lined up, you want as many potential buyers and their agents to see your house as possible. Your listing agreement will allow your agent to list the property on the MLS, which is the database used by thousands of buyers and agents every single day. Without the listing agreement, your agent cannot list your home on the MLS.

Finally, just like you hire other folks to do jobs that you don’t have the time, inclination, or skill to do yourself, signing an exclusive listing agreement means that your agent will do all of the work involved in selling your home. Knowing that an experienced, highly motivated real estate professional has made it their mission to sell your house can give you peace of mind and allow you to focus on all of the other aspects of moving.

Get Started Today

A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. The first step on your journey to sell your Chicago home is to contact Z Chicago. Our knowledgeable and committed agents are ready to help you get from listing to closing at the best possible sale price.


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