Profile picture for bijan1

HOW DO I LIST MY HOUSE IN MLS WITHOUT HIRING A REALTOR.

  • June 03 2009 - Gainesville
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Answers (116)

Profile picture for atc221
Hello!
I am poised to list my townhome and don't know which route to go. I am considering the traditional route with an agent at either 5. or 5.5% commission or a reduced rate/reducedtype route.
The second is a friend's husband who has been very successful as a commericail real estate broker. He does this for family and friends, btw.  He offered to list for 1% of sale price and this includes MLS.( and we will include a buyer agent wiill get 2.7% commission)  But what does that mean exactly? If he isn't with a company himself, where will that listing be found? Also,  I understand an agent needs to pay for the entry on Zillow and it seems as though Zillow is #1 site that comes up when searching for homes in various areas.  I would think the most internet exposure possible is best. 
Thanks for any information.
  • June 17
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Profile picture for nwrealty

"The catch is you can't really raise the price after you place it on the market yourself to make up for realtor fees."

Sure you can!  Although selling yourself gives you flexibility to accept a lower price, the condo's value is in no way influenced by any listing agent.  It is simply worth is what it is worth.  Likewise, the value of a listing agent is not influenced by the condo ... even though they are usually compensated based on the selling price.

First, you need to be very confident in your price.  Then you just need to clearly communicate that you are pricing the condo below market value.  If you later decide to list with a full service agent, buyer's and their agents will understand that you no longer have the flexibility to pass along savings that never materialized.  Again, the key here is certainty that your initial pricing is on target and below real market value.

  • February 10
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Profile picture for sunnyview
" The catch is you can't really raise the price after you place it on the market yourself to make up for realtor fees."

Very true. You can list your house with a FSBO price if no agents are involved and then raise it on the MLS with your listing agent, but once you put it on the MLS you are better off leaving it there or lower if it doesn't move within your average marketing time even if you go with a flat fee agency.
  • February 09
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Profile picture for ecibis
I sold my last house on my own and it wasn't nearly as complicated as it seems.  I had renovated a lot of the house, it was in a desirable area and I had spent a long time researching the prices in the area while I lived there.  I had a family friend that was a realtor come in and give his assessment, another realtor give theirs and my pricing was spot on.  I priced below one realtor friend and above another.  I knew from monitoring how fast similar homes sold what to expect.  I can't say enough about doing your research and doing an honest assessment of your property.  I staged it very well , took high quality photos and listed it through an MLS agent. I was going through a divorce so we wanted to sell quick and managed to get 3 offers within 24 hours!  Now, we probably could have asked a little more, but the buyers agent was a relative that waived the buyers fee to match some of the over bids and we came out paying no commission to anyone.  Granted, that was a perfect case and I really paid attention to every detail of the ad, photos, staging etc.  I hired a lawyer to help close and the relative of the buyer helped as well since she really wanted her daughter to have the place.
 
Now I have a condo I am selling and may actually go through a realtor.  I am in the biggest most expensive unit in a large building that has a couple condos for sale and they do not move as quick as where my house was. However, my unit is really unique and for the right buyer it is a dream unit. The market went up and I want to cash in so I may have a realtor help this time-I haven't decided yet.  i plan on pricing below the value to get a relatively quick sale and could save 12k by listing it myself, paying for an MLS listing, keeping the buyers commission in there etc. so i may try that first and then get a realtor if there are no bites.  The catch is you can't really raise the price after you place it on the market yourself to make up for realtor fees.
  • February 09
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Profile picture for griffon652

Carol B.C. I rarely visit this site so sorry for the late reply. But to answer your questions:
 
1. Yes I know all the forms you have to submit and the laws as a seller when selling your home. This includes things right down to the lead free paint form, which I would submit even if my house was built after the ban on lead paint. As I said FSBO is only a good idea IF someone is willing to do the research to learn the laws/requirements first. I never said anyone can do it without learning the laws first. However, anyone willing to put in the effort to learn can accomplish this.
 
2. I never recommend to anyone to NOT list on the MLS. If you reread my post you will see that I even stated that when you list in the MLS leave in the buy's agent's fee so that your house is actually shown by agents.
 
Fact is it's very plausible to sell your house with ease yourself. But it takes a certain mindset, drive and effort to do it. So although most people are capable of it, they never even attempt it. This is the reason real estate agents will continue to be a needed commodity in real estate. However, people who do learn can save thousands when they sell.
 
Just a few months ago I was trying to close a deal on an investment property (short sale). Even after 10 months the sellers agent, the short sale "expert" and the bank hadn't made headway. So I became extremely frustrated, stepped in and talked out a few legal issues with the seller myself. Now these issues were something that could have been resolved by the seller months ago IF his agent had decided to research the issues instead of leaving it up to the incompetent short sale "expert." But he didn't because he would EVENTUALLY make a commission regardless. But for me I was losing profit by having the money tied up in the bank instead of an investment.
 
The seller was also frustrated because he wasn't sure if he was going to even be approved for the SS or have his house foreclosed on with that on his credit. Had I not taken the initiative to step in I probably would have lost the property. I closed a deal again no thanks to the real estate agent. On a side note, his agent was actually a good one but didn't put in the extra effort needed to close the deal. This is why I recommend that everyone learn as much as they can about real estate whether they use an agent or not.
  • January 06
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Profile picture for Harry Callahan
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  • December 26 2014
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Profile picture for Criszilla
Brad Kilger re:  "I can't believe the amount of people who brought this thread back from the dead. Jun '09 -> July '10 -> Nov '10 -> Sept '11 -> Today."

I can.  Rules can change over time.  The more input, the better.  The more recent, the better.
  • December 26 2014
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Profile picture for sunnyview
[ This post has been edited by the Zillow Moderator for content. See our Good Neighbor Policy for details.] Generally with a flat fee company, you also agree to offer a commission of 1-3% if an agent brings you a buyer offer that you accept. You can also advertise it for free using sites like Postlets that will syndicate your FBSO ad to many other sites.
  • December 26 2014
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Profile picture for Criszilla
Hamp Yonce, it seems to me like the OP is asking how they can list their house in MLS without hiring a realtor's full services; which is quite possible.
  • December 26 2014
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Profile picture for myconone
Florida works well for by owner mls listings; they have standardized, mandated real estate contracts; or you can use a lawyer.
  • December 19 2014
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Profile picture for myconone
Hi, I found the best way is to do internet search for by owner mls listings or by owner mls. Find the ads with the most value offered by a MLS broker, then look at what they have to say. Call the office, confirm they know the website and business well. Otherwise, if the Mls listing plan looks good, then you should go for it. I would love to save almost half the commission with the mls only listing. I wish I would have known sooner!
  • December 19 2014
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Profile picture for ziggidyone
Here's a good handbook on selling without a Realtor.

[promotion deleted by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy for posting guidelines]
  • December 13 2014
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Hi Bijan1,

You can have a realtor list your property in the MLS for you. They may require a fee to do so. But this way, you can get your property listed via MLS and not have to pay a realtor fee. All showings and correspondence will and can be directed to you personally.

However, do be aware that ALL liability will now be on you and you alone,  So do becareful in selling your own property. You may want to also get the assistance of an attorney.

Good Luck
  • November 02 2014
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You're still "hiring a Realtor". There is no way to list on the MLS without "hiring a Realtor". Realtor's own the MLS.

Good Luck in your future endeavors!
  • November 02 2014
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Profile picture for Billbert8
I heard [Website deleted by Zillow moderator] was great. [Website deleted by Zillow moderator. See our Good Neighbor Policy.] has a horrible BBB rating and I'd avoid them! 

[This post has been edited by the Zillow moderator, see our Good Neighbor Policy for details.]
  • November 02 2014
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Profile picture for user0215454455
You can get a flat-fee MLS listing on services like [Promotion and website deleted by Zillow moderator. See our Good Neighbor Policy.] I highly recommend you give them a shot.
  • November 02 2014
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Profile picture for sunnyview
"Susanne, if you see unscrupulous agents every day, are you filing complaints against them?  To, you know,protect us?"

That would be nice, but it seems that it rarely happens if at all. Often every one knows who the bad players are, but few are willing to kick them out of the game. Many agents simply don't want to get involved. 
  • May 13 2014
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Profile picture for themorrigan20
Carol, speaking for myself I do know the answers to the questions you posited.  I also know the seller's agent isn't going to protect me either.  Did I ever tell you about my seller's agent who said I was in violation of the law if I didn't read the buyer's home inspection report?  He was the same one who tried to rewrite an amendment to hide material facts from the buyer's lender.  Please explain how he was looking out for me by telling me, the seller, how I had a LEGAL OBLIGATION to read the home inspection report.  The "rep" from the Real Estate Commission in GA - Rosa something - was deliberately noncomprehending of my complaint and kept repeating that I had OK'd the inspection.   When I tried to get her to read the email in question, she simply started hooting "WOO hoo hoo hoo!  WOO hoo hoo hoo!" into the phone.  He's still out there, workin' hard for his clients!

Susanne, if you see unscrupulous agents every day, are you filing complaints against them?  To, you know, protect us?
  • May 13 2014
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Profile picture for ResultsMLS
My advice is to hire a flat fee broker that is in your local area.  Also check them on the BBB and make sure they don;t refer out your listing.  The more people that touch your order the less service you get.
  • May 13 2014
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There are many flat fee mls listing companies. Some are better than others. You need to search google for flat mls listing and you will find numerous flat mls listing companies.
  • May 12 2014
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Profile picture for nwrealty
You will need a licensed broker's assistance.  Find a "Flat Fee MLS" broker that is located AND licensed in your state.  The required listing forms are usually modified to specify that the listing broker does not represent you, hence you will be a FSBO listed in your local MLS.

You will receive much more value for your money by acquiring a Flat Fee MLS listing and hiring an attorney to look for your best interest.  Attorneys are much better qualified and much more affordable than hiring a real estate agent who is (usually) only required to have a high school diploma plus a few weeks of training.
  • May 12 2014
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Griffon - you may think that you are making out better, by not having a real estate broker or agent working for you.  However, you are actually putting yourself at risk by not having someone who is educated in all of the updated laws and requirements and you are also setting yourself up for other unfortunate issues that could come up.  In addition, you aren't protecting yourself.

For instance, do you know the importance of why you should present a Seller's Disclosure?  And, do you know what this could cost you, if you do not present one?

In addition, you may believe you are saving money by not paying a seller's broker commission, but do you know that the buyer's agent or broker is not going to ensure that your rights are protected?  And, are you aware of the exposure you are missing when no on the MLS?

Of course, if you do hire a flat rate listing broker, hopefully they aren't limiting their services to you.  If they do, remember, you get what you pay for!

I provide both flat rate listing fees, as well as full service.  I give my clients a choice.  And, when I offer my flat rate fees, I do NOT limit my services/responsibilities to my clients.  I work in their best interest.  Be careful of the services that are simply posting your listing into the MLS - they leave everything else up to you. Do you know when you need to provide specific forms of information? There are many things a seller needs to do, legally, to make sure they follow the law - otherwise they risk a sale not going through, or worse, a lawsuit afterwards.

BE CAREFUL!!!
  • May 11 2014
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Profile picture for griffon652
Its not as difficult as some agents make it seem to do a FSBO. Don't get me wrong, the average person is better of listing with an agent if they aren't willing to do at least 10-20 hours of serious research into all aspects of a residential property sale in their state. However, if you are willing to put in the time you will save thousands. Going by the current national median of 200K for a SF house; you will save a minimum of 6K even if you pay the buyers agent their commission. So if you do 20 hours of research and take another 60 hours of work to sell the property, your still making a minimum of $75/hour. That's definitely worth it for most people!

I taught myself to do this early on and also taught my self the in's and out's of what a broker does. I actually bought my primary residence by saving the deal by fixing a deal that my "expert" mortgage broker deemed "impossible" to close. I will NEVER use a agent ever again now that I know the ropes myself. One key thing I highly recommend when getting a flat fee agent to list you for a fee is to NOT take out the buyer's agents commission. Leave it at a minimum of 2.5%. If you eliminate it altogether, no agent will show your listing to their clients because they will basically make $0. That will severely limit the chances of your property getting sold quickly and at a fair price. If you get lucky and find a buyer without an agent then you can pocket that 2.5% as well.
  • May 11 2014
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  • April 27 2014
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Profile picture for ResultsMLS
My company has dealt with all kinds of situations since 2006 and we see unscrupulous buyers sellers and agents daily.  But, this can be found in any industry, and as a whole the Realtors we work with take their code of ethics vow seriously. 

We do flat fee mls listings, free home listings for buyers, as well as full service for $1,200.00.  My goal is to get top dollar for my seller, so I work every deal to that end regardless of what I am getting paid.  You as a seller just need to take a little time and do your due diligence on the company and broker you're listing with whether it's flat fee or full service.  The big referral companies out on the internet only want you fee upfront and then pass you off to a local broker and try to pay them 100-200.00 for the listing.  List with a locally owned brokerage who has your best interests in mind.
  • April 25 2014
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Profile picture for Harry Callahan

If you look there are a few companies, [Promotion removed by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy for information.] you are in a densely populated area then it will come to price, everything else is smoke and mirrors. If you feel comfortable about doing business, i.e. like buying a car, it will take some knowledge and common sense. If you don't feel comfortable than hire an agent.

But don't let an agent tell you that you can't do it yourself. The MLS is like eBay in the sense that if you put something in the right category and give it enough days to be exposed to a market place, the price with find the market. Gone are the old days when all the house inventory was in a book published every week. give it 14-21 days and if you don't have activity and offers, than the price is wrong. Sellers will often complain that my agent didn't do anything, no flyer box, no open house, etc. All of that is done to appease the seller and has very little to do with selling your house. If it's not the price, than its the price.

 

  • April 24 2014
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Every town has a small local owned Real Estate Brokerage. I own one in my small Northern California area. I  work with my community and have more to gain by helping others see there's agents out there who really care about clients above and beyond personal gains. Being in business as long as I have with my small company, I hear time and time again how some clients have had bad dealings with other agency. I have proven myself to be out for my clients best interest which in turn keeps me busy all the time. It's not one sale it's the big picture of building a long term client relationship. I'm sure there's one in your area. You just need to try and find the one that proves them self to you.  
  • April 24 2014
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Profile picture for themorrigan20
To take Michael's post a step further, here's a scenario from "Freakonomics":

You list for $150k.  Let's say that's fair value and you easily find a buyer.  At 6%, the realtor's commission is $9000.  Let's say they split it evenly with the buyer's agent, and then split that with their broker.  Now they pocket $2,250, you get FMV, it's all rainbows and skittles.

But let's say you get an offer of $140k.  Do the splits again and your realtor gets $2,100.  For a difference of one hundred fifty dollars in hand vs more work and waiting for them but another $10,000 for you, what do you think they're going to advise?

Unless you're working with a long-known, trusted individual, your loss of $10,000 is acceptable to them in order to get a quick commission and move on to the next client.  And to be fair, in this economy I've seen even ordinarily decent people do indecent things, but that doesn't mean I agree to become a victim.

  • April 20 2014
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  • April 19 2014
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Profile picture for MichaelMichaels
The problem with realtors is that they represent themselves and not the seller.  I have probably spoken with over a 100 realtors this year alone and all of them give you bogus information to get you to list with them.  It is possible to list and sell without a realtor.  Just keep in mind that realtors don't mind if you lose money, as they get a commission either way.  A good honest realtor is about 1 in 100.
  • April 12 2014
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