If you’re looking to sell your house, you can always go the traditional listing route – its effectiveness is indisputable. But under certain conditions, you may want to consider a pocket listing. You will, however, need a top-notch agent in the case of a pocket listing. Here, then, is everything you need to know about what a pocket listing is and how it can help you sell your house in Southern California.
What Is a Pocket Listing and How Does It Work?
A pocket listing is any type of real estate listing that is retained by a listing broker or salesperson and not made available to other brokers in the office or to other multiple listing service (MLS) members.A pocket listing may also be referred to as an ‘off-market listing’ or ‘exclusive listing.’”
That may be an accurate definition, but it’s not really all that clear or helpful. So let’s look a little closer at what differentiates a pocket listing.
With typical traditional listings, sellers hire an agent to market their property and list it on the MLS database. A large pool of buyers have access to this database, and listing a property there signals to the buying public that it is officially for sale.
But with a pocket listing, “sellers won’t place their home on the MLS or anywhere else online. Instead, homeowners will let their realtor know that they want to sell their home but do not wish to list it publicly. In turn, the listing agent will only share the listing with select agents who represent qualified buyers, and/or they will share the listing with potential buyers themselves.”
Typically, when a seller hires an agent to list and sell a property, a listing agreement is drawn up for the seller, the agent, and the hiring company. Then, as we mentioned, the property is listed on the MLS so that the listing agent can cooperate with other agents and brokers and, as a result, share any commission.
Because in a pocket listing the property is not put on the MLS, the seller’s agent has no agreement to work with other agents or real estate professionals and gets to keep all the commission. And this is why you have to ensure that you’re working with a trustworthy agent – because it’s easy for things to slide into an area that is ethically questionable. (To find out more about avoiding such problems, contact a qualified agent at (805) 257-5780.)
Why Do Sellers Use a Pocket Listing?
There are three main reasons why sellers choose to use a pocket listing over a traditional MLS listing:
JUST THINKING OF SELLING AND NOT FULLY DECIDED
If a homeowner isn’t yet fully committed to selling but is considering it, she may choose a pocket listing instead of listing on the open market.
WANTING A SPECIFIC PRICE
Some sellers have a certain price in mind and are unwilling to negotiate on price. In this case, they may opt for a pocket listing to find out, without the MLS commitment, if buyers are willing to pay that price. A pocket listing also allows agents to “seek out and vet buyers who have the financial resources to purchase the home.”
PLACING A PREMIUM ON PRIVACY
Some sellers highly value their privacy and don’t want their listing plastered all over the Internet or strangers traipsing through their home daily for showings. A pocket listing allows this kind of privacy.
Advantages of a Pocket Listing
There are several scenarios in which a pocket listing provides advantages that can help you sell your house in Southern California. These include:
WHEN YOU HAVE A BUYER IN MIND
If you already have a solid buyer lined up for your Southern California house, there’s really no point in going through the effort of staging and listing, A pocket listing will do what you need with much less time and effort invested.
WHEN YOU WANT MORE PRIVACY
With a pocket listing, your sale will remain relatively private, with only a few people knowing about it. This privacy will allow you to target the serious buyers and cut down on unfruitful negotiations.
WHEN THERE’S A LIMITED MARKET FOR YOUR HOUSE
If, for example, your house is upper end price-wise, there’s likely to be a limited market for it. In this case, a pocket listing will help you sell because you can target that specific small market.
An Important Caveat
So a pocket listing can indeed help you sell your Southern California house, but there’s one important thing you should be aware of. And that is that you will need a top-notch local real estate agent to get the job done properly. You must get recommendations, do your research, and interview prospective agents. Or you could just go straight to the agents you can be assured will have the necessary experience and expertise. We have those agents. If you’re interested in a pocket listing and want a qualified agent, just contact us today at (805) 257-5780.