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What is a sole mandate?

When homeowners decide to sell their property and have chosen an estate agent/agency to market their property, they will be asked to sign a sole mandate with the said estate agent/agency. A sole mandate is given to only one agency and no other. This is different from an open mandate, which means that the property goes to as many agencies as the seller wishes. It is important to note that a sole mandate is a legally binding agreement, therefore, the seller must understand and agree to all the terms and conditions set out in the agreement.

What are the requirements?

  • A sole mandate must be a written agreement
  • The sole mandate needs to include the seller’s signature
  • The expiry date of the sole mandate must be recorded in the agreement
  • The estate agent is responsible for supplying the seller with a copy of the sole mandate
  • The estate agent is responsible for explaining the meaning and consequences of the sole mandate to the seller
  • The estate agent is responsible for explaining the legal implications that would occur, should the seller sell the property without the assistance of the estate agent or through the intervention of another estate agent

What are the benefits of a sole mandate?

One of the main benefits the sole mandate system is that it forces agents to put all their focus on a few properties, instead of running around, desperately trying to get more and more properties to sell and market. Other benefits include:

  • The seller could get a better price for their property when employing a sole mandate agent
  • The agent will put more energy, effort and money into the marketing of your property
  • By employing a sole mandate agent, the seller can avoid double commission claims, thus saving him/her money
  • The seller will have more privacy and security, as there won’t be a potential buyer walking through the door
  • When too many agents are marketing the same property, it could lower the property value
  • Only one “For Sale” sign will be placed outside your property, which means that potential buyers should contact only one agent or agency
  • The sole mandate agent has a whole team to back him/her and has access to a full buyer list, which means that a quick sale at the best price is more likely


This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice. Errors and omissions excepted (E&OE)

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