Really wrong to do to the owners!
But in all fairness there are sellers that just want to stay out of MLS, sometimes.
Prudential CA Realty
I have seen riders on yard signs that say, "Pre MLS sale." In some cases, the seller is not ready to have people coming through their house. But in the end, outside of the explanation which is at the direction of the seller, what you are seeing is a listing agent trying to leverage that listing into additional sales for themself. REO agents were notorious for this.
I think the privacy consideration is more often addressed by not having a yard sign. Limiting exposure of a home for sale by not going to the MLS in most cases is to the detriment of the seller if an offer is accepted prior to going live on the MLS. Exposure is the name of the game.
This leads into a whole other debate about dual agency and all I will say is buyer beware....
Good Luck and make sure you have buyer representation to look after your best interests, because the listing agent sure won't.
If they are called on this practice, by potential buyer's agents, they'll just "mysteriously" produce a form "allegedly" signed by the seller. ( Whose signature no one has actually seen.)
This is a sign of the market, and I've seen it every time we've had a seller's market - quite a few times over my 36+ years in this area.
The good news for buyers and buyer's agent? This phase will pass, and Karma will come out in force.
Thanks for asking this question on trulia as it is a very relevant topic. These so called pocket listings have been getting more popular.
Yes, agents have properties that are for sale and not on the MLS. There are a few common scenario's in which this happens:
1. The owner is famous (think: Julia Roberts) or well-known or in public service (think: judge). In that case the owner might not want a ton of people trying to come over to the house and just check it out because of who is the owner. They only want serious buyers...
2. The owner simply doesn't want to put their house on the market because they like their privacy and just don't want to ''deal with it''...
3. The house is coming on the market in a few weeks or months, but for whatever reason they don't want to ''officially'' put it on the market yet. This sometimes happens when the house is being fixed up or if the owners are looking for something else, or if the house is tenant occupied. The house will then be available for sale if someone happens to come along, but it will not be on the market until the time is right.
4. The seller doesn't want the tenants to know the property is on the market (has definitely happened before).
Really the best thing to do in my opinion is to find an agent at a larger company who is willing to really call around and spend a lot of time working for you.
The reason I say large company is that for example at Berkshire Hathaway agents often share their pocket listings with each other. The more agents, the more pocket listings. So even if your specific agent doesn't have the right pocket listing for you, they might still be able to find you one within the company. You can definitely call around, but I generally recommend trying to work with one agent, rather than 10. One agent, who knows that you will buy your home with them, will work much harder for you, than an agent who knows you are working with many other people and is unlikely to represent you in the transaction.
We have a lot of pocket listings. If you have any more questions don't hesitate to call me!
Have a great day,
Realtor at Berkshire Hathaway Laguna Beach
949 395 0960
There's NO GOOD reason not to be on the MLS.
There are certain situations for example, like when taking a listing for a short sale and giving the seller a short period of time to gather all their documents. Every seller is different and their needs are also different, however it is our job to educate them as to the benefits and drawbacks and then either put their needs first or don't take the listing. Most of us have taken overpriced listings with or without setting the seller's expectations as to how long it will take to sell that property. Every house that comes on the market is different because the people that are involved create the dynamics so there is no one size fits all. Our market is also always changing and we have to change and grow with it. People still need our help to obtain their personal financial goals when they buy or sell their house.
While Mack's point is "How are we supposed to know, ask the source," the likelihood of getting a genuine answer from the listing agent is not high. Part of the basis of some of these answers is that agents follow the rules and/or a code of ethics. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
Agents are in the RE business for many reasons. For me it is to provide buyers and sellers with insightful expertise that helps them make informed decisions regarding real estate. Providing my clients with quality and value is always foremost in my mind and is what I really enjoy. There is a perspective out there to be in the business to make as much money as possible. This spectrum runs from mild to extreme. On the extreme, I know agents who will do whatever it takes and cross whatever line to achieve that goal. Many of these types are empty souls with big bank accounts.
Just to show a balanced perspective, I know sellers who are as Allan describes. I personally do my best to avoid both corrupted agents and close minded sellers...because there are too many other great people in the world to help and with which to work. I find the latter group to be much more enjoyable to be around.
in the end, everyone finds the property that was meant for them. So really, none of this matters in the bigger picture.
Some sellers think they know what's best. Majority of the time or most all the time the sellers is incorrect. Realtors know what is best and they are the ones working out in the public/ business full time.
It's the agents fidicary duty to the seller to get the best possible offer for the seller.
Yes, there are some agents that do this practice for personal gain. I have run across a few of them
REOagents can lose their account trying to bring in both sides. I have seen an agent lose a couple REO accounts this way and no longer works in our company for her decisions to do this
Must be looking out for the best interest of the seller to get the best possible offer. That's it
Ingrid Ski Realtor
We can't list a property unless a seller gives us written authorization to do so. Chances are, they've told a half-dozen other agents "if you bring me a buyer, I might sell - and of course, you'd get a commission."
But we don't know why people that we don't know do the things that they do. In these cases, best to consult the target directly.
All the best,
There are a few reasons that come to mind for why a Realtor may not list a property on the MLS: 1) they may be following instructions from the homeowner who has stated that they do not want the property listed on the MLS, 2) they may advertise the property through other means that the homeowner has agreed to, and 3) they may have taken the listing but there is a delay in listing the property on the MLS because the property is not yet ready to be shown perhaps due to renovations or waiting for a tenant to move out.
Please let me know if you are interested in finding out more about properties that are for sale.
With Warmest Regards,
Birgit O'Hearn, Realtor
Keller Williams Realty