Pocket Listings Surging Experts Say
Pocket Listings As A Home Sales Style
Can Have Repercussions for Sellers
Those with experience in the labyrinthine world of home sales will be familiar with the term "pocket sale". If you're not an agent, broker, or you've never sold or purchased a home this way, the term may be new to you. A "pocket listing" is the listing of a property where the broker witholds the property information from any multiple listing service or advertising. A pocket listing may be closed ended or open ended. In other words, the agreement may state the listing will be witheld from the MLS and advertising for a specified period and then information will be distributed, or the entire listing period may be involved. Whatever the individual case, pocket listings are becoming more and more prevalent in home sales in our current market.
Why creat a Pocket listing? Well, the advantages to the broker are obvious. If a broker can sell the property to one of his own clients, he keeps the entire commission by "double ending" the property. Some brokers with who do these types of home sales and hold these listings will open them up to other agents in their office. In this case the broker keeps the entire commission within the brokerage. Additionally, the agent doesn't spend any money on advertising the home.
The advantages to the Seller are more difficult to see. Some people find the process of home sales difficult. They don't like hordes of prospective buyers and "lookey-loos" traipsing through their property, or they are uncomfortable with "the public" knowing their home is for sale. This type of Seller may appreciate the quiet efficiency of this type of home sale. However, there may be disadvantages as well.
Here is an article by Kenneth R. Harney in the Real Estate section of the Washington Post which discusses the in's and out's of Pocket Listings:
"Pocket listings are surging, real estate experts say, because of historically low inventories of homes for sale in major metropolitan areas, …"
Is A Pocket Listing Your Home Sales Style?
There are many forces pushing Pocket Listings into the ranks of the more popular forms of home sales. However, if you're considering it, you should be aware of the benefits and the drawbacks. Pocket listings can restrict the number of potential buyers who will see your home, thereby restricting the number of offers and finally your selling price as well. You should also be aware of the potential conflict of interest that happens unavoidably when both sides in a transaction are represented by one brokerage. But, if those things are all right with you and you're more concerned with crowds and publicity, then the pocket style of home sales may be for you.