When selling your home, you want to find the best possible agent to represent you. And as we've discussed previously on our site, 'the best' is not always the same for everyone.

While almost everyone is looking for and placing a lot of emphasis on good sales stats, each seller is influenced differently by the personality of agents, their brand, their selling technique, even their colleagues in the agency or the storefront.

So, what happens when you've chosen the agent, you thought you ticked all the boxes and it turns out this particular sales person doesn't live up to the expectations you have of them?

This may not just be about whether or not they have sold your place in the expected timeframe, but may relate to factors like their behaviour, how they communicate with you (and how often), how they represent you and your property to buyers, or the way they market the property.

Breaking up with your agent is not always easy -- it can be awkward and even sometimes quite confronting, so making sure you are certain your decision is well-founded and in compliance with any agreements you have, is very important.

Do you really want to break up?

Making the decision to dump one agent in lieu of another (or these days, to potentially go it alone) isn't one to be made lightly, here are a few questions to consider that may help you make a more well-informed decision.

1. Do you have an existing and ongoing agreement?

When you sign up to sell your property with an agent, that agent is legally required to have you sign an agreement that specifies the terms of your arrangement with them. Often times, but not always, that agreement may include an exclusive period, during which you cannot list the property with another agent, and if you sell it yourself, you may still be required to pay some fees.

Before bustling into the agent's office and letting them know why you are disappointed, first ensure your agreement has already expired or is about to expire, or that it isn't exclusive.

2. Has the market affected results?

Another really important question to ask yourself is, 'Are my expectations just too high in the current market?'

It's never too much to expect your agent to communicate with you regularly, keep you up-to-date, operate professionally, market strategically and ultimately, to do the best job possible.

It may, however, be too much to expect an agent to sell your home in two weeks, at the same price you would have achieved last year, if the market has declined or changed since then.

While the agent may do everything within their power to promote the property and meet with potential buyers, average time on the books often extends in a cooler market, and price will often experience fluctuations.

Do your research, compare your pricing and time on market with other properties online that are in a similar area, in similar condition and with a similar price range to see if yours is the anomaly or if it is simply part of a market trend.

Remember not to be selective in your comparisons -- your own disappointment and impatience can cause bias and motivate you to specifically look for properties that have recently sold for a good price in a short time, but reviewing a solid cross-section of properties is advised so you can get a better understanding of what's happening.

3. Are you being wooed by another agent?

If part of what is influencing you to move agents is in fact that another agent has come knocking at your door with a convincing reason to abandon your last sales person, research is again, very important.

Most agents are very honest and committed to doing a good job like the rest of us are in our selected careers. There are, however, some who succumb to the pressure of a changing market and fewer listings and sales, by not presenting your options honestly.

If an agent approaches you and suggests they can achieve a much higher asking price than your current agent, pull up your chair and start that research again!

If you have a good relationship with the current agent, start by telling them about this opportunity and asking them to review the price -- honestly. Compare with other properties currently on the market that are similar and also properties with recently sold and you'll quickly see if the agent is just promising a high price to win the listing. If that is the case, beware!

This new agent in all likelihood will have the same challenges in selling the property and meeting your expectations as your current agent, and might gradually move the asking price back down to meet the market.

4 reasons breaking up might be your best option!

Now those questions are out of the way and answered, you know it isn't the market or misleading information from another agent that is swaying you, and you are legally able to change agents, here are some reasons this decision might be your best option.

1. Your agent doesn't communicate

Remember, like all of us, agents are busy and they can't be emailing or calling you 50 times each day. Despite that, there is a reasonable volume of communication you should expect.

If your agent hasn't passed on offers, doesn't give you updates on interest after opens, doesn't check in, and isn't feeding you any insights relating to the reach and effectiveness of their marketing, they may just be too busy to keep you in the loop, which means they must just be too busy for your listing!

Again, this is a case of having realistic expectations -- you aren't their only client -- but don't sit around wondering and waiting for a return call, you need communication!

2. Is their advertising sub-par?

There are three types of agents when it comes to advertising:

· First, there are those who may be a little lazy; they list your property in all the usual places and then wait for buyers to come to them.

· Secondly, there are great agents who put a lot of effort into your marketing, but they use marketing channels that are so out-dated and redundant, or so non-strategic, that getting a result is now a bit of a lottery.

· Thirdly, there are agents who are across both the traditional and more modern channels, they assess your property, develop a buyer profile, and strategically integrate old and new channels to reach more people quickly.

If you have the first agent, let them go! If you have the second, simply consider having a chat to them about other promotional options. If you have the third and they also have good stats and a great personality, never give them up!

3. A clash of values

Sometimes you will meet an agent who seems lovely; they are charming and friendly and switched on. But once you have signed the contract and you are communicating with them regularly you start who they really are.

If an agent does not operate with values you respect and you feel uncomfortable with how they treat you, buyers or even other people in their office, this is usually something you can't fix. People are different, you and your agent are different, and it's time to move on.

4. All promise, no delivery!

As mentioned, fluctuations in the market can effect even the best of agents, and a house they may have sold in three weeks last year, might now take three months -- no fault of their own.

If this is the case and your agent is still working, working, working for you, have an open and honest chat with them before you jump ship. Maybe some stats, comparisons and marketing figures will help you adjust your expectations.

If, however, when signing with an agent, you chose the one who gave you the highest asking price, by far, because -- like everyone -- you want a great price for your home, but they have gradually brought that price down over a period of weeks, you may have been misled. Agents like this give a bad name to those who really work hard -- most of them -- so don't be afraid to find someone better!