3 Things You Need to Know About Putting Your Home Sale on Hold

published May 31, 2022
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Home sales get put on hold for any number of reasons. Maybe there’s been a medical emergency and the seller can’t continue showing at that point in time. Or maybe the seller no longer has a place to move and needs to stay in the home longer. It could even be that the seller just doesn’t like their listing company anymore and wants to switch to a new one.

Whatever the reason, it happens, and you should know what to do in that situation. If you need to de-list your home for a while, follow these tips from the real estate experts at Coldwell Banker Warburg.

Be completely honest with your agent.

Don’t try to hide the reason for your held sale from your agent. Be honest — it will help them counsel you on how best to move forward, whether that’s stopping the sale completely or temporarily, or finding a completely new agent.

“Remember, you have hired someone you trust to handle the sale of what is likely your most expensive asset,” says agent Mihal Gartenberg. “You should trust them with the truth, even if it is very personal. Agents owe their clients confidentiality, so you don’t need to worry about your agent gossiping about you. And if you are, you hired the wrong agent.”

Make sure you use the proper MLS term.

Your agent will most likely handle this, but be sure your held sale is listed properly. Agent Karen Kostiw outlines the differences: “A listing will be marketed as ‘unconditional,’ meaning the listing is withdrawn from the MLS without conditions and the seller is free to list with another broker,” she says. 

A ‘conditional withdrawal’, meanwhile, “means the listing is approved to be removed from the MLS; however, there is a separate agreement outlining conditions between the broker and seller. A conditional withdrawal prevents the seller from listing with another broker,” Kostiw explains. “[And] a ‘temporary withdrawal’ is approved to remove the listing from the MLS for a period of time and is bound by the listing agreement. The brokerage and seller agree that there will be no showings to prospective buyers until the delayed showing period has ended.”

Maintain the condition of your home.

If you want your home to have the best chance of selling once you put it back on the market, remember that putting the sale on hold is not an excuse to slack on maintenance and upkeep.

“Sellers who temporarily take their listing off the market should be ready to relist as soon as they are able,” says broker Gerard Splendore. “Sellers should keep the property in good condition so it is ready to be shown again when they are able. If the sellers have taken their home off the market to make improvements, they should be ready when work is completed to relist and begin actively showing.”

Aside from these topics, there aren’t really any hard and fast rules or laws to follow when you have to put a home sale on hold. So go ahead and mold your sale to your schedule.