How can a Seller get an MLS listing w/o paying commission?

Asked by Nancy Ross, Cherry Hill, NJ Wed Jul 6, 2011

We wish to save ourselves and the prospective Buyer of our house in Cherry Hill the extra cost involved in paying a commission by just listing our house on MLS and showing it ourselves. How can this be done? We think the house will "sell itself" anyway because of it's perfect location.

Help the community by answering this question:

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Ron Thomas’ answer
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Sat Jul 9, 2011
Are you listening to yourself:

You want something for free,
and you want us to help you get it!

You think the only value we offer is listing a house on MLS.

You think you know enough to do our jobs,

You respect us enough to ask our help,
but not enough to pay us for our services.

And you think we will help you,
after you disrespect and insult us.

Have I just about covered it?
11 votes
Ron, you are incredibly arrogant and you are not helping your cause. Your attitude, is unfortunately very prevalent amongst realtors I have dealt with. I haven't met a realtor yet, with integrity.
Flag Sat Aug 12, 2017
Ron, you are one of the reasons I won't use a real estate agent to sell my home. Obviously, Nancy wasn't asking you for help. Why are you even on this board? You are like an ambulance chaser! Stop being so arrogant to think that without you, or another "agent", a person is not capable to successfully sell their own home!
Flag Fri Jul 7, 2017
Ron, you are one of the reasons I won't use a real estate agent to sell my home. Obviously, Nancy wasn't asking you for help. Why are you even on this board? You are like an ambulance chaser! Stop being so arrogant to think that without you, or another "agent", a person is not capable to successfully sell their own home!
Flag Fri Jul 7, 2017
Hahaha, exactly as Thomaspagz978 said.
Flag Tue Jun 6, 2017
sir in alot of case i fell like the money that is taken from the sell is high i am a commsion sales person also and i would be more inclined to use a realsate agen if they were more flexabel i think ever on should make some money on every deal but i dont think any one should make on a 400k listing after cost and co brokering the deal 12000 per person for a tolta of maybe 80 hours put in to a sale if the homes sales in the frist 60 days
Flag Sun Jun 4, 2017
Flag Thu Jun 1, 2017
so many realtors are not worth the amount they charge
Flag Thu Jun 1, 2017
Hey Ron,

Im a professional car sales man. When you're ready to sell your car, Will you hire a professional to do so? Lol
Flag Mon May 29, 2017
She is not asking the agents. This is not a realtors blog. This is a self help community and yes, we know enough to do your job. We can answer emails, phone calls and unlock a door with ease. The reason she is asking is lack of respect for over paid secretaries. She is asking we the people who have done this already. We know what the answers from an agent will be; you need us we are professionals. Well some out here have dealt with many "agent" they are more often than not simply doormen (persons?). Charge a lot of money to do no more than let strangers into our houses. Stand there and move on. There are alternatives. Here is one
Flag Sat May 27, 2017
I don't see how Nancy disrespected you, in fact you are disrespecting her. She wasn't asking you for advice, she is on Trulia's message boards seeking help. I am pretty sure she could care less for your opinion. Is this message board only for realtors? if not, please shut up and stop being a little cry baby.
Flag Wed May 24, 2017
Flag Sat May 13, 2017
Its because of people like you Ron, people try to sell their homes on their own. Maybe if you would be more supportive and understand the reason why owners try to keep their hard earned money in their pockets instead of arrogant people like you. Kindness goes a long way. If I cant sell the house myself, I will go to an agent who was kind enough to help me through the process. You are arrogant.
Flag Wed May 10, 2017
Greedy realtor
Flag Wed Mar 15, 2017
It seems real estate agents come from the same mother with used cars' salesmen.
AVOID both. Do your research and find good answers - they are plentiful out there.
Flag Thu Mar 9, 2017
Kind of the reason people avoid realtors temperamental and rude.
Flag Sun Oct 23, 2016
Your reaction to the question say's a lot about you. There was no disrespect or insult in the question. Just a very temperamental response
Flag Sun Oct 23, 2016
You are definitely passionate about your profession. Ron was asking a simple question. Ron did not insult your profession, nor did he say anything about knowing as much or more than a realtor. You read into his question, a lot more than what was asked. In sales we are trained to remember the word kiss (keep it simple stupid). Also, in sales we are trained to answer the question and only the question. Then you decide to go ahead and insult others whom are trying to sell FSOB.
Flag Wed Sep 7, 2016
You think homeowners are too stupid to sell their own homes? Haven't realtors held home sellers hostage to your commission rates with MLS long enough? People should have choices, especially when a 6 percent commission will consume their home's equity.
Flag Sun Jul 24, 2016
Nobody asked you for advice Ron ...... it was a question to the community. It was obvious that she does not want to pay 6% to a real estate agent
Flag Wed May 18, 2016
Congratulations Ron, you've just won jerk of the year!
Real estate agents run the biggest scam in America, other than the federal government. ANYBODY can sell their house themselves, with a small amount of research.
Flag Sat Apr 30, 2016
thank you doctor

itd be cheaper to get my own real estate license and do it myself. its not rocket science.
Flag Mon Apr 11, 2016
What a DB!
Flag Tue Dec 15, 2015
My situation is different. I have been the victim of hate crimes for a decade- and now I have aged 50 years in one decade most people my age look young I look like I have died. I must not sell through an agent for that reason. As such how can I list in MLS?
Flag Tue Mar 24, 2015
You are a DB!
Flag Mon Sep 8, 2014
what a jack ass...and monkey can do your job ass hole and for bananas compared to the rate you clowns charge...get the banana out of your ass....ANYONE can do what you do and the Title Company's are the ones that 'clean up' all YOUR screw ups clown
Flag Fri Aug 8, 2014
...and this is exactly why we are trying to circumvent you useless real estate agents. Dishonest, untrustworthy and just plain incompetent.
Flag Mon May 19, 2014
I can not see paying somebody 6% or even 3% because they took a 40 hour class and can put a home on the MLS agents should be paid a flat fee since it takes no more work to sell a 100K property than it does a million $ property but an agent will make 6K or 60K for pushing some papers that any person is capable of doing. They people that do the real work is the title company for doing the title work and insuring it.
Flag Wed Feb 19, 2014
I understand the frustration but sometimes people just cannot afford the fees you charge.
Flag Wed Dec 18, 2013
you should lose your license
Flag Mon Dec 16, 2013
WOW that's such a rude reply Ron. Even if I could afford you.... based on your rudeness I would NEVER use your services. Customer service, and you can catch more flies with honey should be buzzing in your ears. Sad, sad, sad.
Flag Mon Nov 11, 2013
I think your pretty damn rude. For the amount of money you people charge to sell a house, I can understand her question
Flag Thu Jul 25, 2013
Richsalvagni, Home Buyer, South Bend, IN
Wed Apr 29, 2015
My wife and I sold two houses in the last two years; one rental property and my own residence without an agent and moved both them within 30 days. I do not live in a "hot" market either. With access to the MLS ($99), Zillow, Postlets, Realtor and all of the other resources online, the value a realtor can offer is fading but ironically their commissions are not. It's pretty simple really, take good pictures, be available for phone calls and responsive to buyer inquiries.

Buy the standard purchase agreement at your local Staples or download it online, make sure that you have the buyer sign a condition checklist and lead paint disclosure. Negotiate the buyers commission out of the contract. If the buyer find value in her services they are entitled to pay them directly that is between them and their agent not you. If you miss any documents to title company will in sure that they are signed and processed they are the backstop to real estate transactions.
8 votes
I am a realtor;,just paid $632 for MLS access. The MLS for $100? Realtors pay a chunk of money, take a challenging test, undergo continueing education to stay current on market trends and laws that can prevent you from getting sued, access to databases of buyers to bring to the table, can correctly run a comparative market analysis when deciding on the price of your home, assist with knowledge of the buying and selling process, depending upon who you are representing, educate, educate, educate. You erroneously think an agent collect 6% of the sales price of a home; commission is split 4 ways. Your accusations are a gross generalization. You may have recieved more for your home if you had used an agent;however, amidst your smugness you'll never know. Marketing a house is a full-time job if done properly.
Flag Mon Sep 19, 2016
What site did you use to list your property on MLS Rich? All the ones I see have catches with a small % of list price.
Flag Mon Jun 6, 2016
Keri Ricci, Agent, Cherry Hill, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
Maybe I can help the community out with this one and help "put it to bed" as this house was in my market and I am familiar with it. Nancy began trying to sell her house in 2006. She went through 5 very different brokers and was finally successful in getting it sold in January of 2012 for 55% of what she originally asked, by listing with a good, traditional broker. She was unfortunately caught in the downturn and very disappointed in its real and declining value and became a perfect example of what overpricing and not getting good advice, until the last agent, can do to you.
8 votes
Your logic is totally skewed, as the same issue could have happened in 2001 with overpricing the house and finally getting her price in 2016....
Flag Thu Dec 8, 2016
No offense, but I heavily doubt that her posting in 2011 asking for very initial-stage advice "how can I sell myself" essentially implies she started in 2006, but good try at scaring the do-it-yourselfers away there.
Flag Thu Apr 17, 2014
Levi Monday, Both Buyer And Seller, Anderson County, SC
Thu Jul 25, 2013
Dear Agents,

It doesn't gain you business to fill a thread with "you should really get a realtor" and "you're a really big idiot" kind of comments. If you want to participate in a thread, then do. If not, than don't clog it up for the few people who might just want to answer a question plainly. Every seller knows that using a realtor is the easiest and most effective way to sell a house. We're just trying to save money as hard as you are trying to make it. Perhaps some amiability in forums like this would improve the general feeling towards realtors instead of perpetuating the idea that you're out to get us for everything you can.
6 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
pssst Dottie -

if you took the time to read a few of the previous posts, (it amazes me when I notice so many agents don't bother to do that) you'll see you're talking to no one, or actually, preaching to the choir - Nancy is long gone from this forum.

This question was asked 16 months ago (again, check the date under the question in the lite gray font) .and, thanks to Keri, (thanks KERI!), we have all been updated on the outcome!!
5 votes
Pacita Dimac…, Agent, Oakland, CA
Tue Sep 6, 2011
Guess you didn't hear.

Even the founder of used a realtor to sell his place. Hmm....isn't that ironic?……
5 votes
You're all greedy
Flag Mon Jun 19, 2017
Excellent answer..
Flag Sat Oct 15, 2016
true. but if you read the article you'll see that he makes the point that Manhattan is heavily controlled by realtors. now that may be b**s**, but the same article talks about two tycoons selling their place for $20mm and $40mm without any commission.

Like anything, success at listing a place on your own is a function of hard work, creativity, and pricing. If you don't want to do the work, then hire a pro. If you are willing to do the work (research pricing, etc.) it is worth it.

The place I bought was atrocious in how the real estate agent photographed it. After a complete rehab I spent 2 full days just taking shots: backlighting rooms, wide angle shots, flood lamps to heighten effect, etc.) No agent is going to do that. And I wouldn't expect them to.

Bottom line - if you're a go getter, you can do this yourself.
Flag Tue Sep 9, 2014
mindchain, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Tue Feb 26, 2013
I realize this thread is VERY OLD - but just sharing a story for anyone who's stumbled upon it like I.

so this many many others are littered w/agents. & I mean absolutely NO offense by that .. they need to make a living too - understood

but - there is NO harm in trying to sell by yourself. I did in Allen , TX . It cost me $199. to list on MLS, & spent a total of 5 hours marketing my home, taking pictures etc..

figured, I'd try it out..and see ---for 4-6wks(I was in NO hurry)
ended up selling my home for 425K(listed was $430K).. in 3 weeks..yeah it was a bit of a hassle, but I $AVED myself around $25K...yup.

There is NO HARM in trying...believe me you'll have them crawling under rocks waiting for you to list with an agent... if you decide its too much work..

No Harm . No Foul
4 votes
Thank you for the positive feedback that we can sell our home without agents. I don't mind paying for my home to be on the MLS but the answer from some of these realtors, it sounds as if only they can put your home on the MLS. I have had excellent realtors and then there are those who are like sharks and will even try and sell your home at a low price for a fast commission. As I said before, it sees as if the new generation of realtors are like used car salesmen. Maybe if they negotiated their fees more people would call on them.
Flag Mon Jul 29, 2013
Thank you for your out come of selling without an agent.
I find an agent do not do what any home seller could not do on their own.
I am selling my home on my own and I had so many agents at the open house even though the listing said, "Principals Only" they felt the need to tell me how unsafe it was for me to show my own home, how I needed them for the paper work.
When told ....
1. I'm a cops kid
2. This is a great safe neighborhood
3. I have a real estate lawyer available
They seem to shut down, finding they did not have any more excuses for their services.
I find agents to be right up there with car salesmen.
Flag Fri Jun 7, 2013
send2dale, Both Buyer And Seller, Cherry Hill, NJ
Sun Jul 21, 2013
Sounds like a bunch of real estate agents are upset because you are trying to sell your house by yourself. If the agents didn't charge an arm and leg to sell your home, then maybe you and others would use them. I sometimes feel like I am dealing with sharks or better yet, used car salesman
3 votes
See the link below. This seller tried and lost 55% by not hiring and listening to the best agent when she first came on. I've seen many other similar examples. Can you sell a home without an agent, of course. Would the outcome be the same or better? Since there is not way to truly measure this, we can each argue our side, but there are more risks than the average person takes into consideration.
If poor agent's didn't charge an arm and a leg and people only hired the best agents, we'd all be better off. The best agent is worth more than their commission and a bad one, or none at all can cost a seller in more ways than they may ever know. Best of luck.
Flag Sun Jul 21, 2013
homecoin, Agent, San Diego, CA
Sun Apr 23, 2017
You can list your home on the MLS for an upfront fee (e.g. $100) by finding a local flat fee broker. Search google for FLAT FEE MLS + YOUR CITY to find local brokers who provide this service.

When you list on the MLS using a flat fee broker, you can offer whatever commission you want to buyer agents via the MLS. A couple of notes on this:

1. Most MLSs will require that you offer a minimum commission to buyer agents of $1.

2. 88% of buyers have an agent (according to the Association of Realtors), and those buyer agents will typically NOT show a home that is offering a very low commission on the MLS. Ask the local flat fee broker what the typical commission offer is for homes selling at a similar price.

In general, the big things you want to look for in a flat fee MLS listing are:

1. The listing MUST be on the local MLS.
There are dozens of MLSs in California alone. Sellers want to be on the MLS that covers the area where their home is located, so they can offer a commission to LOCAL buyer agents.

2. Cost to list + changes to listing.
Can range from $100-$400 for the exact same listing on the MLS. Watch out for fine print that requires an additional fee at closing. Make sure you are able to make changes to the listing after it has been posted for a nominal fee.

3. Photos on MLS.
Make sure you can upload at least a half dozen photos. Some services offer a great price, but it is only for 1 photo - which is not useful for most properties.

4. Length of Listing.
Get at least a six month listing and be sure that there is no charge for cancellation.

5. Fine print.
You should never be required to use any closing service (e.g. escrow) provided by the flat fee service agent. This is a violation of federal law.

Ultimately, we have found that the three most important things when listing a home are 1) price, 2) pro photos, and 3) offering a fair buyer agent commission on the MLS (typically 2.5%).

Let us know if you have any questions!
2 votes
Bama1gem, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Sat Jul 27, 2013
Ya'll have sure be the hell out of Nancy, she has probably thrown her computer out the window. She only ask how to list her home on MLS without paying a commission. Yes, you are paying a fee for the MLS, but if you look at her question again, she said nothing about not paying to list her home there, only without paying a commission. I want to sell my house and ask the same question or the search engines wouldn't have brought me here. You didn't answer the gentleman's question about the FEE's being so much different for a house for $100K vs $500K. Is it harder to sell a $500K house than a $100K house? Those fees were set when realtors were advertising in the news paper, television ads, etc. YOU said that 85% of the sales today were coming from the internet. Your out $50./month in fees.
2 votes
Molly Hay -…, Agent, Columbus, OH
Mon Sep 5, 2011
It is really important for you to hire a realtor!! If you were convicted of murder would you represent yourself? If you were diagnoised with a disease would you treat yourself? In the market place we are in a realtor has the neccessary tools needed to sell your property for the most amount of profit in the fastest amount of time. You should interview a few agents and hire the agent that you feel you will work best with. Good Luck!
2 votes
You aren't an attorney. Why should I hire YOU to represent me? So what you are really saying is that I should hire a real estate attorney.
Flag Tue Jun 13, 2017
Theirs a big differance,

You can't compare Agents to Lawyers and Doctors. Dr. and Lawyers go to Universities and earn degrees. Very Difficult to accaully get a degree in one of these fields.

To become a real estate agent all you have to do is take a few quizes and a final test. Could be done in as little as 2 or 3 months.

A REAL Estate agent is more like a car salesman. AND MY QUESTION TO YOU IS - Would you hire a professional car salesman to sell your car for a fee? I think NOT.. LOL
Flag Mon May 29, 2017
Excuse me? Are you comparing yourself to an attorney or a physician? Really? These are the worst arguments I have ever heard from a realtor...
Flag Mon Apr 11, 2016
Thomas Bohlm…, Agent, Rolesville, NC
Mon Sep 5, 2011
Showing your home yourself sounds like fun, but is that really a good idea? Here are some questions for you?

- are the potential buyers qualified to buy your home?
- are they really buyers or just lookers?
- do you know legally what you Can and Can NOT say to potential buyers?
- Even before listing is your home prepared to sell? Location is very important but not everything. What about the Price, Preparation, and Presentation?

Realtors do more, far more than just list or show homes. The contracts to purchase or sell a home are quite extensive and knowing what to do and what not to do is vital.

and Realtors do most of their work, After the contract has been signed yet before the closing date.

Now I noticed that you posted on July 6, has your home sold?

I wish you the best of luck
2 votes
For the DIYer's in answer to these:

- are the potential buyers qualified to buy your home?

Simply ask the buyer if they are qualified. It would be a good idea to get into contact with a local mortgage lender however. You can goto any bank, talk with them for a bit about selling your home and ask if you could refer potential buyers to him/her to get financed - this is business for them so they're happy to help. Also you can have them check to compare/get low rates and qualified.

- are they really buys or just lookers?

This sort of goes back to the first question. If they are serious, than they will be prequalified.

- do you know legally what you Can and Can NOT say to potential buyers?
Here it is a good idea to pay 500$ or so for an attorney that handles these procedures and can ensure the paperwork is correct for you.

and to the last. Yes, clean/fix up your house and offer a reasonable price - lowballing will get more offers and you don't have to accept..
Flag Thu Apr 17, 2014
Carl Ben Wit…, Agent, Upper Montclair, NJ
Sun Sep 4, 2011
Sell itself? An MLS is a way of enlisting hundreds of member agents to sell your house. Studies demonstate that a listing with broker/agent will bring you more money than on your own. You don't want to loose money do you? No house sells itself.
Put up a red and white FSBO sign from the hardware store. See how many calls you get. There will be more agents notice your sign than would-be buyers. Put an ad in the newsaper- $50-100. See how many call. Put an OPen House sign up. See how many stop by to walk thru. Stay home to show your house 12 hours a day. See how it goes.
Or, use a realtor, sell your house and get on with your life.
Do you also pull your own teeth? Stitch up your children's cuts? Bake your own bread? Put on a new roof?
And, a buyer you may find even as along shot, will want to save the commission you are not paying. How rude of them, right? Good luck and keep us posted.
2 votes
Your profession is nothing like the training required to a dentist, surgeon or even a baker or roofer. Stop flattering yourself.
Flag Mon May 19, 2014
Unfortunatelly the realtor doesn't work in your interest and you lose money with him because he will drop the price of your home to the level where he is sure the home will sell fast and it will be under the real value.; you lose a lot considering also the commission (6%). If possible, use teh MLS because you have two options. One is to sell your self if the buyer see the house on the MLS listing and do not use an agent or to have an agent but then the commission is less and is ussually between 2 and 3%, depend what you agree to offer when you list the house.
It can be done, I did myself and I saved a lot.
Flag Thu Nov 7, 2013
Mary Petti, Agent, Edison, NJ
Tue Jul 12, 2011

I forgot to include in my previous post that the flat fee brokers take YOUR money up front to list in the MLS but you have to offer SOME compensation to the selling broker in the MLS (after all, the MLS is where RE agents pull the listings for their buyers from).
In this market when many listings are now paying 2.5% to 3% to the selling broker, and with the volume of homes on the market, just being in the "perfect location" is not going to sell the house for you. Why in the world would I show and sell a house, and do all the work necessary to get it to closing for NO compensation at all?

or you can go a full FBSO route and avoid having to pay any commission, then handle all the other things I mentioned in my previous post. But it is most likely you will net LESS this way than if you listed it with an agent. Commission is negotiable, so it's worth it to allow the professionals, that do this over and over again, help you through the entire process.
2 votes
Gina Chirico, Agent, Fairfield, NJ
Wed Jul 6, 2011

After getting so many notifications of answers to your post, I wanted to stop by again and point out the fact that you want to use OUR MLS, the MLS Real Estate Agents are MEMBERS OF and PAY MEMBERSHIP DUES TO but you want to AVOID paying us a commission. Do you see anything wrong with that picture?

Second, if the house will "sell itself"...why would you need the help of OUR MLS? Just let the house sell itself.

Its just one of those things that make go hmmmm.....
2 votes
I actually see nothing wrong with it. If she wants to get onto the MLS and pay a fee to do so, she should be able to do so. Just like every other form of advertising business in the country. There are sites that will allow you to do this like z illow etc. And all the other stuff you guys list that 'only you know' and why you need to be hired... your joking right? Ever hear of google and the internet? Most of it is pretty available these days, or they could hire a real estate lawyer at about 1% of your 'take'. It would cost me about $500 for that lawyer instead of about $24,000 to sell my house using someone like you, and then still have to hire a lawyer as well to draw up part of your paperwork needed.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
Kenneth Verb…, Agent, PRINCETON, NJ
Wed Jul 6, 2011
Nancy, the mls is run by and for the benefit of the Brokers that run them. Listings are now typically shared with both listing and selling sides splitting fees charged. You can save money by using a flat fee agency that will charge a small fee to list, however typically there will be commission paid to selling agents which seller would pay. If your house will sell itself, you need only put up a sign. dont bother with print advertising, internet advertising, direct mailings, or contacting agents. Neither the mls nor sites like Trulia are the proper venues. If you are not offering to compensate agents you shouldnt expect them to sell your home. The costs of selling include commissions as well as repairs and numerous other expenses. Just as sprucing up your home adds value, the services of a good agent also add value by properly marketing the home and negotiating the terms. Nancy, when I sell my own properties as well as those of family and friends I pay and charge full commissions because I know the benefits of doing so. I suspect your past dealings unfortunately havent shown you the same value. good luck.
2 votes
Jbob, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Fri Aug 4, 2017
congrats on confirming the myth that realtors are just order takers
You get the largest commission out there for the work you do and the value you provide...will continue to laugh as the internet continues to steal the layup work that all of you have been getting the last 30 years!!!!
1 vote
Russell D Cr…, Agent, Greeley, CO
Thu Aug 27, 2015
You should be able to find a local real estate agent who intends on finding your buyer, and being paid the buyer's side of the commission. These agents, like myself in CO, would gladly list your property with out charging you a listing commission. Make sure you are getting a full service listing with advertising. Best of luck in NJ!
1 vote
Faira Farmer…, Agent, Knoxville, TN
Wed Sep 7, 2011
Hi, Nancy,

Selling a home is not just showing it to a buyer who decides they want it on the spot and whips out hundreds of thousands of dollars out of their pocket with which to pay for it. It is a VERY complicated and time-consuming legal, ethical, technical, and financial process. There are contracts and state, federal, and environmental laws that have to be adhered to; AND please keep in mind you will have NO protection from lawsuits from a buyer who later feels you misrepresented the facts of the property and want damages paid, including their attorney fees. Not to mention the prospective buyers that may claim you would not sell them the house based on discrimination or bias against them. If you insist on trying to do it yourself anyway, please seek counsel from a real estate attorney. Not trying to frighten you, just want to give you a tiny insight into potential ramifications. Thanks for allowing me to respond- Faira Jackson, Keller Williams Realty, Knoxville, Tn
1 vote
Lisa Adkins, Agent, OFallon, MO
Tue Sep 6, 2011
Sorry but the benefit of being listed in the MLS is that you have Realtor representation. Realtors and Brokers pay the MLS to showcase their listings that their sellers pay them to sell. You should not have the free access to this service that we all have to pay for.
1 vote
Brenda Molloy, Agent, Irvine, CA
Mon Sep 5, 2011
Dear Nancy,
Saving on commission sounds great but will you really save that much? Do you really know how to price your home? Do you know the mandatory disclosures and addenda that your state requires when you sell a home? Do you want to show your home to anyone who rings the doorbell? Are you sure you're not biased in favor of your home? The advice of a neutral 3rd party would be adviseable. Realtors are professionals and will help you get the most for your home. Statistics show that when sellers use a realtor, they get mush more for their homes. Realtors also know the required disclosures and correct contracts to use in each situation which may save you future law suits. A professional realtor will give you tips on presenting your home to potential buyers. You should interview two or three agents to see what they can offer.
1 vote
Scott Godzyk, Agent, Manchester, NH
Mon Sep 5, 2011
Nancy houses do not sell themselves in a buyers market such as this. The sale of a house is based on location AND price. You need to be priced right. Placing a listing in MLS is just a start. Buyer agents will not bring buyers to your house without getting paid. You can try and find a discount broker to pay and they palkce your house in MLS but you get what you pay for. NOTHING... it takes time and money to market your house to attract potential buyers, in this market where banks are so tight you then need to pre-quailify those buyers BEFORE bringing them or letting them into your house. It is not as easy as it sounds. The truth is a good listing broker will sell a home quicker and at the best price possible therefore getting a higher price tehan the low ball offers usually made tio for sale by owners. the commission is more than covered in alot of cases with much less hastle.…

Please see my blog for mor etips and advice
Web Reference:
1 vote
"Buyer agents will not bring buyers to your house without getting paid." then they aren't doing their job for the buying client then are they. This is the type of stuff that makes you guys seem shameful. It's also why the seller shouldn't be paying both sides of the fee and you wouldn't have that problem. You'd still make your 3% and you could DO YOUR JOB for the client who is buying.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
Tchaka Owen, Agent, Fort Lauderdale, FL
Sun Sep 4, 2011
Judi, based on the vast majority of responses to the question, a flat fee listing is NOT the best bet.
1 vote
Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Tue Jul 12, 2011
You've gotten honest feedback from the professionals that do what you hope to accomplish on your own for a living. It is hard work and the chances of you succeeding on your own are pretty slim. As to homes "selling themselves", those days are done, even if the location is "perfect". You need to price smartly and expose your home to the widest audience possible in order to get the best price. Stats show that sellers that enlist a good agent net more than those that try to avoid the commission and do it on their own.

It is customary for the seller to pay commission. So if you want to avoid it altogether but be on the MLS then you can use a limited service broker, pay a nominal up front fee, and then offer to pay out nothing. Even a perfect home in a perfect location would not do well if the compensation for selling it to an agent is $0.

If you are determined to avoid commission, then go solo - FSBO style. What you will attract will be bargain hunters who will take your hoped for commission savings right off the top and negotiate from there. So in the end, you'll do all the work, essentially pay the commission anyway, and likely net less not more because you will be dealing with such a limited pool of buyers.

If we agents didn't add value to sellers and buyers, there wouldn't be so many of us. We are not all terrific but many of us are. And the value that a super agent will bring to your effort is as great as the "perfection" of your location.

Good luck to you,
Jeanne Feenick
Web Reference:
1 vote
"Even a perfect home in a perfect location would not do well if the compensation for selling it to an agent is $0. "
See now that is the part that really burns my buttons. How is that serving your client if they are the buyer? If they look at the MLS and say... hey I love this house.... are you going to talk them out of seeing it, not promote it to them, or talk it down even if it might be the right fit for them, because you won't get your over priced commission? That is why it is nonsense that the seller pays both sides of the deal. A lot of times I have even been told that realtors won't bother showing your property if you don't off a BONUS on top of the 6%. What balls that takes, I tell ya.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
James Gordon…, Agent, Hamilton, OH
Wed Jul 6, 2011
Nancy the MLS is not designed as an advertising medium.

The MLS is a Broker to Broker exchange of properties listed for sale and the unconditional offer of compensation for a completed sale.

There are places wher you can list your home as a limited service listing for a flat fee and offer compensation to the buyer agent.
1 vote
Nice try but here is the truth. When I go to buy my homes, I go on the MLS that I can easily get to through any web search engine. and I find the houses that appeal to me and then I call someone to set up .... basically to come and open the door so I can look inside. Most of the time that agent doesn't prepare and pre learn about the house or know the things that would appeal to me to know about it. They simply open the door and hope it sells itself. Lets be honest people.... there might be some of you that go above and beyond, but I'd argue 90% of you are keymasters with the control of the code to unlock the lock box.
So I hate to tell ya but.... the MLS is just that.... an advertising medium.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
Kenny Martin, Both Buyer And Seller, Louisville, KY
Sun Aug 6, 2017
The Realtors Industry should be shut down for good due to unethical practices widespread across the Country, I have dealt with them for over 35 years and can tell you there is good reason they are listed as some of the most untrustworthy people in the Country based on polls taken for many years, they never rank high and they even come in under Lawyers often. They are a waste of money in my opinion and lack the skills and knowledge required to REALLY do the public a service. ANYONE can list a home and sell in a hot market but it takes an honest Realtor to protect Buyers, and far too often it's the Buyers who get the shaft, Realtors mainly work for the Sellers, for money, for profit, for their livelihood.. we have some of the worst in the Country where I'm from IMO and they go out of their way to prevent Buyers from using skilled and thorough Home Inspectors.. they want the ones that paint a pretty scene of homes and minimize the issues. EVERY Contractor I know quit working for Realtors very soon after starting and none had good opinions of them. Realtors are even refusing access to thorough Home Inspectors all over the U.S. so what good are they?? BUYERS BEWARE!
0 votes
I agree with you 1,000%!
Flag Sun Aug 6, 2017
Bkilpatrick1…, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Sun Jul 30, 2017
The MLS is owned and ran only for real estate associations and their member agencies. There at plenty of sites for what you want, just not the MLS.
0 votes
UpNest Top R…, Agent, Burlingame, CA
Wed Jul 26, 2017
We created UpNest ( to help home sellers get the best value possible. All you have to do is submit a few details about your home, and we'll invite several top local agents to submit proposals to you. Since agents are competing to earn your listing, they bring out their best commission rates and value added services, saving you a lot of money. There's no risk to try us at all, and it's completely free for you. Good luck!
0 votes
George Alvar…, Home Buyer, Orlando, FL
Mon Jun 19, 2017
Do it your self Realtors are greedy sales people and if you don't like the truth deal with it
0 votes
UpNest Top R…, Agent, Burlingame, CA
Thu Jun 15, 2017
Hi, Commission rates are negotiable and can vary. The key to negotiating the best rate is to compare and interview several agents in your local area. We started UpNest ( to help you compare top agents that compete to earn your business. Since agents compete for you, they offer their very best rates and services. You'll also get to ""comparison shop"" like you do for all the other things you usually pay for. It's free and there's no risk to try us out, Good luck!

You can also find out the average commission rate for your area here:"
0 votes
Williamk, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Sun Jun 4, 2017
Yes you can sell your property without paying the listing fee. Lots of "services" provide MLS listing and signage without the listing fees.
Lots of people spend the time to try to fix their automobiles also, some are successful and some not.
Being the largest investment in one's lifetime, I would be very careful of how the transaction of Real Estate being handled. Escalating law suits and conflicts in recent years.

True, there are some inexperienced broker/agent out there whom might not provide the best service they could but , there are also some professional with experience and with a good head on their shoulders. It's the consumer's job and their only job to seek out the right service for their purpose. As one would seek out professional help for other issues in their life.
Sure., with the freedom of information these days, it seemed easy to walk through just about anything, however, would you self diagnose your illness and forgo the chance of seeing a M.D. ?
No joke, someone searched on the web then demand a specific prescription from their M.D. ...... as they see the issuing of the prescription service from their M.D. as the only valued. Same as many see the service of a Realtor only values as a door mat , to open the door for them.

Someone had said it here, the real good "realtor" could save you both time and money. It'll feel effortless because someone had helped you to avoid all the pot holes on the road . Not because the transaction is so easy that a layman could do it without complications.

There is no free lunch. But we all expect that, don;t we ?
0 votes
21, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Tue May 23, 2017
I have had a home listed in a hot market without a sale. 6 mos of that was with an agent. He initially listed the house for more than $40,000 above its real market value and adjusted it slowly down over a period of 4 months. He justified that by saying that HIS "comp" formula was more accurate than any of the other brokers in the area. It wasn't.

In all that 6 mos, I had 8 showings but I have my doubts if they were real because 6 of the 8 happened within 48 hrs of me calling the agent to inquire why no one was asking to see the house. The day the contract expired, I listed the house in a local paper and the same day, I had 8 requests for a showing.

If he had sold it, he would have gotten a commission of $19,500. By my estimate, he put in perhaps 20 hrs of labor and services over that entire 6 months period - maybe even less since he personally showed it only twice. Even doubling that number to 40 hrs by the time of closing, works out to be about $487/hr as a labor rate.

I know he is a professional and there are fees and licenses to be paid but $487/hr is way higher than any other comparably trained and licensed profession - think doctors, lawyers or pilots. That is just not right and I think it is a profession that takes advantage of the psychology of fear, desperation and ignorance of sellers. For this reason, I will do almost anything to avoid using a seller's or a buyer's agent
0 votes
Mikai, Both Buyer And Seller, Wayne, PA
Thu Jan 5, 2017
I maybe late but still want to participate. Based on my experience of selling my own houses and buying new ones, I believe that the value of real estate agents is going down quickly.

Yes, you can sell your own house on many DIY websites, which offer many different tiers of services and prices. However, you want to make sure you need MLS listing as a "must-have" feature. The cheapest price for listing in MLS is $99. Anything less, you may only have "website listings".

In this way, you don't have to pay seller's commission. However, the tricky part is that MLS listing will ask if you pay buyer's broker fee, which is the commission for buyer's agent. This is the incentive for other agents to bring buyers and sell on your behalf. You of course can say that no buyer's broker fee will be paid. It makes it harder to sell just because you don't have "ground sales forces" working for you besides a static web listing.

I agree that most real estate agents don't do enough for their commissions. Nothing personal. Just an observation.
0 votes
Tabwiz, Home Buyer, Cherry Hill, NJ
Fri Nov 11, 2016
Don't worry. In this technological world, the life expectancy of a real estate agent is about as long as that of a travel agent. This agent will soon be on a website asking how to get a job.
0 votes
Xxxx, Home Buyer, Ocala, FL
Wed May 11, 2016
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CONTACT: 914-301-5710/914-299-1910

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0 votes
Lance Nowak, Agent, New Berlin, WI
Sat Dec 6, 2014
Limited Service MLS Listing
0 votes
Carl Ben Wit…, Agent, Upper Montclair, NJ
Fri Dec 13, 2013
For all the non-readers on Trulia, this is an old one. I copy this old post.

Keri Ricci, Broker, Cherry Hill, NJ
Maybe I can help the community out with this one and help "put it to bed" as this house was in my market and I am familiar with it. Nancy began trying to sell her house in 2006. She went through 5 very different brokers and was finally successful in getting it sold in January of 2012 for 55% of what she originally asked, by listing with a good, traditional broker. She was unfortunately caught in the downturn and very disappointed in its real and declining value and became a perfect example of what overpricing and not getting good advice, until the last agent, can do to you. 2012.
0 votes
Johnny James, Agent, Carson, CA
Fri Dec 13, 2013
Love how people want to use our MLS to sell their property but do not want to pay anybody commish.
0 votes
Michele Wils…, Agent, Lake Forest, IL
Fri Dec 13, 2013
Chances are the "buyer" for your home will be working with a realtor and they will need to be paid. Tom Leone's advice is very good. You should call him.
0 votes
Let the buyer pay that commission then.....Why should I pay for it? Why should I pay $25,000.....when I can just pay $500?
Flag Tue May 10, 2016
Real Estate…, Home Buyer, Punta Gorda, FL
Thu Dec 12, 2013
It's your home and you need choices. You should try a FLAT FEE LISTING SERVICE visit http// Flat Fee Mls Listing Services....
0 votes
Sam Cong, Agent, San Diego, CA
Fri Nov 1, 2013
To all the sellers who see this response... Multiple Listing Services are a tool for agents to tell other agents that they have a house for sale and some confidential information on the property. Where you really need our help should be in the closing process.

The MLS is part of our trade and is guarded because we have to pay a lot to the local MLS, Realtor Association; not to mention we had to get licensed just to have the right to use it.

You are welcome to try or but notice that one is a real estate agency and the other teams up with agents. Both offers "added services" that is usually just a checkbox on the MLS service for us agents.
0 votes
Lauralyn A.…, Agent, Oroville, CA
Thu Oct 24, 2013
I think Trulia needs to purge after a certain date!! Old....
0 votes
It is fascinating how this one attracts comments, isn't it? I sold my last one with virtual staging, paid for myself, $225. My broker took half the commission per my contract, provided my sign, cards, phone and fax, internet, office located in hi-traffic area to encourage sellers and buyers to stop in, took another 6% of mine to provide followup post cards, placed the newspaper ads for open houses. I paid the $500 local board fee, the $600 errors and omissions insurance, the $225 MLS fee, the $100 license fee, the $200 lockbox fee. I think I broke even but made a family very happy whom I did not even know before the listing. I counted it up, 1% of the population (33,000) in my town has a real estate license being held by a broker in my town. We are here to serve, and make people happy. Selling a house is one of life's major challenges. Believe me, if you can do it yourself, it is a miracle. If I become a broker, my office will be "Miracle Real Esate... If it sells it is a Miracle."
Flag Fri Oct 25, 2013
Mary Petti, Agent, Edison, NJ
Wed Sep 4, 2013
THIS QUESTION WAS ASKED IN JULY 2011 PEOPLE.... I'll bet Nancy sold her house already (probably with a realtor..wink, wink)
0 votes
Floyd Master…, Home Buyer, San Diego, CA
Wed Sep 4, 2013
You can use , they will list your home in the MLS for free, there is no catch, you can also receive offers and negotiate those offers online.
0 votes
Thomas Moser, Agent, East Northport, NY
Thu Jul 25, 2013
Short answer: You cannot get your house on the MLS without paying a commission. The MLS is for real estate agents.
0 votes
Mary Petti, Agent, Edison, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
Ditto...Thanks Debbie for reiterating what I did back in May.....and yes thanks Keri at least we know what happened, and the house didn't "sell itself"
0 votes
Dottie Camma…, Agent, Cherry Hill, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
Thank You Nancy for this question. The short answer is YOU CAN'T...but let me explain.

The fact that your home is a "Winner" and you believe that, with MLS exposure alone - - it will "sell itself", tells me that you recognize the importance of using powerful tools to exposing your home to the greatest number of potential buyers. This is correct! BUT, you are mistaken if you don't recognize the "AGENT" as the MOST powerful tool!

I can tell you "love" your home and its location - BUT, do you have the ability to "see" your home without emotional attachment? An agent does.

And how will you know what the current market trends in home selling are; if not from an agent?

When it comes to pricing your home for the highest possible return on your investment with the fewest headaches and delays - do you have the knowledge and insight learned and applied over many years of practical experience by a seasoned agent?

And what about the "AFTER"? Will you know what to do to keep the sale together "AFTER” the contract is signed?

I understand trying to "save" money - - but cutting out the professional realtor - - is being "penny wise and pound foolish" I hope you will reconsider and interview a few “pros” to find the one that fits YOU and your PROPERTIES needs best.
0 votes
honestly, have no issues w/agents . There are some very good ones..and heck, I would have probably sold my home faster if I had one..but 6% is funds out of my kids college education.. So Shop TARGET(ME) or Shop (MACY's) ..same thing full service vs. discount -- nothing wrong with that
Flag Tue Feb 26, 2013
Also I have a house now I could sell for about $400k. But can't sell it because losing $24,000 to an agent to list it on the mls, and open the door and let people look around, means I make $0 on the sale of my house. All of my 'profits' are gone. There are sites out there now like z i llow that will give me a pretty darn good idea of house value and market trends etc. I'd also venture that my business degree and masters makes me more equipped in market trends, strategies, salesmanship, negotiating then someone that studied to be a realtor (no offense, it's just true). So lets not live in this fantasy world. Hell, charge what you want, but then don't be shocked by people like the original poster looking for a way to avoid using you.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
I keep hearing you guys all say the same thing. How you are so important, and the most important part and blah blah blah. No one is justifying what on earth you guys think you actually do that is worth a 6% cut of the sale of the house? Why a $500k home that gets you $30k , and a $100k home that gets you $6k, you are doing any different to earn that money. The answer is your not. I'd really love to see how your making up such a difference in the work you do for that house over another. And then if that is the case, then why are you drastically under cutting the work you do for the person wanting to sell their $100k home. There is no incentive for you to sell it in 1 month vs 6 months. No incentive to get the best price for the SELLER if your also trying to get the best price for the buyer. And still questionable is why on earth it is on the seller to pay both sides of your fee instead of it being a 3/3 split with buyer and seller just like transfer tax.
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
Carl Ben Wit…, Agent, Upper Montclair, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
Keri, thanks for the helpful post. A perfect example of the value of Trulia. Along with Debbie, Happy Thanksgiving to all.
0 votes
Carl Ben Wit…, Agent, Upper Montclair, NJ
Wed Nov 14, 2012
I tried to detective this one, on is the Cherry Hill assessors web site. No "Nancy Ross" as owner in Cherry Hill. But now in Nov 2012 she could have sold it some time ago, she is not the owner. If we had an address we could figure out how close to market value it may have sold for. After a few years of RE, I notice a dwindling number of FSBOs. Of all the times in history to do it, this is not the best time. Sellers seldom realize that the sale of their house is a significant problem in their life and approach it as "someone is trying to steal my house from me." My analogy is selling a used car. As a part time job, you can wash it and polish it even "detail" it, change the oil, advertise in newspaper-craigs list-Ebay-etc,, put sign in window, park in visible spot, price it as Blue book or best offer, answer phone when it rings, be available to show it, allow test drives, accept cash only or MO or bank check but you cannot finance it, or, have a dealer do it who specializes in selling cars and does it full time. A seller will work hard selling a car and not do the same trying to sell a house, which is unlike a car and has no twin just like it. A house needs traffic to reach the best possible outcome. It must be presented in the best possible light. "Selling itself" is the last thing that can happen for any house.
0 votes
Poor Nancy, who knew she would attract so much attention. Bet she didn't think someone would try to "detective" her years after posting a simple question online. Kind of scary.
Flag Sun Jul 20, 2014
Your still not justifying the chunk of change you want to take from the seller. And you wonder why they don't want to use you?
Flag Wed Nov 14, 2012
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Tue Nov 13, 2012
HI Mary

well - I meant it when i asked what happened...too bad nancy hasn't dropped by to fill everyone in on the outcome!

Happy Thanksgiving!
0 votes
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