Warren County Ohio Real Estate News and Observations: Can I Get Out Of Real Estate Agent Jail If I Hire The Wrong Agent?

Can I Get Out Of Real Estate Agent Jail If I Hire The Wrong Agent?

real estate jail?

Let's say you're ready to buy or sell a home.

You KNOW you need a real estate agent to help you out so you start your due diligence.

Maybe you get a recommendation from a friend.

Maybe you go back to the agent that helped you buy your home.

Maybe you check out reviews online.

Maybe you interview several agents, or hire the first agent that answers the phone.

But when all is done, you've got an agent to help you sell your home or buy a home.

And maybe quickly, or not so quickly, you realize things just aren't working out the way you thought they would.

Other homes in the neighborhood are selling in less than 4 weeks and you're at week 7, 8, 9....

Or personalities just don't click.

Or something that was promised to you isn't happening.

Or it turns out the agent you hired...handed you off to someone else on their team.

Basically there can be many reasons you're unhappy and looking for a change. 


So what can you do to break out of real estate agent jail?


Well if you're selling in Ohio, the listing agreement you signed is actually with the brokerage, not necessarily the agent you hired, so there are options:

1.  Discuss with the agent you're working with why you're unhappy.  Perhaps the business relationship can be corrected to your satisfaction.

2.  Discuss with the broker.  The broker may have another office agent that can provide what you need, or the broker may choose to release you from your listing agreement.

3.  However, keep in mind that unless there's a willingness from the broker to release you from the listing agreement, the brokerage DOES NOT have to release you.  The listing agreement is a contract and the brokerage can 1) opt to either not release you at all (not a good public relations move), 2) remove you from the market, but refuse a full release to list with another brokerage until the time period of the agreement is over (also not a great PR move) or 3) just turn you lose entirely and hope you'll keep your dissatisfaction quiet.


If you're a buyer in Ohio, a lot depends on whether you've signed a buyer's agreement with the agent.  If so, that's the equivalent of a seller's listing agreement and you've got a formal business contract, so the options are similar to those of a seller.
1.  Discuss the issues with the agent.

2.  Discuss with the broker.


However, if you have NOT signed a buyer's agreement (and the Consumer Guide to Agency Relationships is NOT a buyer's agreement), you're technically a customer and not a client during the home search phase.

That means you're a free agent and can decide to work with another agent, especially if you come to the realization that your agent doesn't have specialized knowledge you need (e.g. Cincinnati patio homes) or the agent is too busy to fit you in and those houses you want are POOF off the market before you can ever get in the door.

Ideally, you communicate to the agent that things aren't working out, and you repeat your due diligence for hiring your next agent.


Want to discuss further?  Just give Bill a call at 513-520-5305 or email Liz@LizSpear.com.

Serving Greater Cincinnati home buyers and sellers,

Bill and Liz aka BLiz



Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas


The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth Spear, ABR, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2002007747

William (Bill) Spear, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2004011109  Kentucky 77938
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Bill Direct:  513-520-5305
Liz Direct: 513-265-3004     
Fax: 866-302-8418

MailTo:  Liz@LizSpear.com

Search Homes:  Https://WarrenCountyOhioRealEstate.com

Our Website:  www.LizTour.com

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Comment balloon 3 commentsLiz and Bill Spear • July 27 2019 11:00PM


Thank you for sharing this educational post about how to get out of real estate agent jail

Posted by Michelle Carr Crowe,Altas Just Call...408-252-8900!, Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years (Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty) about 2 months ago

Liz and Bill, that adorable little guy/girl doesn't belong in jail :))

Good tips on expanding client awareness about communicating their needs to agents and brokers.

Posted by Kris Collis, Associate Broker, Professional Results you Expect 570-507-7510 (Smart Way America Realty) about 2 months ago

Hello Bill(and Liz too) - although the sentence may feel like a lifetime, those things are rarely so.   Fortunately.

Your escape plan from a life of unfortunate circumstances  is sraight-forward and an important one for any frustrated buyer or seller to consider before striking his/her/appeal to a higher court.    

Posted by Michael Jacobs, Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393 about 2 months ago