Warning! Pocket Listings May Be Dangerous to Your Bottom Line

Pocket Listings in Nashville TennesseeIf you have been on social media lately in Nashville, you have likely seen homes that are posted with the tag lines, “Pocket Listing” or “Coming Soon.” 

These are the real estate buzz words of 2015 due to the low inventory of homes for sale in many areas of Nashville.    If you are thinking about selling you home, these might seem like good ideas.  They certainly are trendy and give off an air of exclusiveness. 

Do you really want to be exclusive in the marketing of your home?  

Before you answer that question, let me give you a few things to consider.  At the end, I will recommend the best way to use the Coming Soon tactic if you decide to employ it.

I know that some people use these terms interchangeably, but in truth they have radically different meanings. 

Pocket Listings are properties for sale by a broker who has no intention of placing in the MLS.  These are against the rules of the Tennessee Real Estate Commission and the local MLS because they are not in the best interest of the consumer.  Hang on for a minute and I will tell you why. 

“Coming Soon” is a property for sale by a broker who has a contract to place a property in the MLS at some point in the near future.  As long as the broker has written permission to advertise the home for a specific number of days, it is ok by the MLS and State Rules.  However, that does not guarantee that a “Coming Soon” tactic will be used in the best interests of the seller. 

Here are the top two reasons you should be careful with a coming soon.

First, you are limiting your market exposure and opening yourself up to offers.  If you get an offer while it is “Coming Soon”, I would not recommend that you accept it.  Without opening your home to the whole market, you cannot be sure this is the best offer that you will receive on your home.   With many homes receiving multiple offers, it is not uncommon for a home in Nashville to sell for more than the list price. 

Second, some agents use this technique as an opportunity to represent the buyer as well.  This is not in your best interest.  When you sign an exclusive listing agreement, the agent is required to follow your lawful commands and work in your best interests.  If the listing agent also brings the buyer, then the listing agent has to become a facilitator or a disclosed dual agent for both parties.  In either instance, you have lost the exclusive representation of your agent. 

I refuse to practice dual agency or become a facilitator for both parties.  Do not get caught in this trap. 

If you decide that you want to employ the “Coming Soon” tactic, there are a few things that will make or break your success.   First, your area must have significantly higher demand than inventory.   Otherwise, this strategy will not help.  Second, you need to price your home competitively.   If you significantly overprice your home, it will be hard to generate the activity necessary to make this tactic work.  Third, plan to start advertising just a few days before you plan to place the home in the MLS.  Fourth, do not allow showings until the home is listed in the MLS.  Part of the benefit of this strategy is compressing the showings into a small time frame to alleviate the inconvenience of leaving your house.  Don’t forget that!   Fifth, start the showings on a Saturday and plan to be away from the home for most of the weekend.  You do not have to leave town, because you are maximizing the number of showings in a short period of time.  Just get out of the house and have some fun.   Last, let the buyers know that you plan to review all offers on Monday or Tuesday.  The scarcity will motivate the buyers to submit their offers quickly, so you can get the home under contract quickly with the least amount of stress and inconvenience.

If you want to learn more about the best way to sell your home, then call Steve Jolly at 615-519-0983.

Otherwise, you can see the recent sales in your neighborhood and get a projected sales price for your home at, NashvilleHomesNow.com.

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