Like other catastrophes that require homeowners to move out as quickly as possible, it's in the seller's best interests to keep news of a serious illness from buyers. Even if a listing agent is sensitive to your situation, they might show too much urgency to sell in listings, ads, and during showings and open houses. It's best to approach the listing as you usually would, to ensure that you can get the best price. When it comes to signing a listing agreement, don't insist on a shorter contract term, despite your urgent situation. While you might like to allow the agent only one month to sell your home before terminating the agreement, most agents don't think that gives them long enough to realistically make a sale.