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What Are Pocket Listings?

  • April 15th

by UrbanTurf Staff

When it comes to buying or selling a home, most people assume that the process involves listing a property on the market through a real estate agent. However, there is a growing trend in the industry called "pocket listings," which are properties that are not advertised on the open market but sold through exclusive channels.

A pocket listing, also known as a "quiet" or "off-market" listing, is a property that is for sale but is not listed on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Instead, an agent usually promotes it to a specific network of buyers or other agents. This means that only a select group of people have access to the property, and it is not advertised on real estate websites or in public listings.

Pocket listings can be attractive to both buyers and sellers. For sellers, it allows them to keep their property private and avoid public scrutiny or unwanted attention. It can also be a useful strategy for high-end luxury properties that may benefit from a more curated marketing approach. Additionally, sellers may believe that by limiting the pool of potential buyers, they can create a sense of urgency and competition that could drive up the price of the property.

For buyers, pocket listings can provide an opportunity to find a property that is not available on the open market. They may be able to avoid competition and have a chance to make an offer before anyone else. Additionally, some buyers may be looking for a specific type of property that is not available in the current market, and a pocket listing could offer them the chance to find what they are looking for.

However, there are also potential downsides to pocket listings. For one, they limit the exposure of the property to potential buyers, which could result in a longer time to sell or a lower price than if it were listed publicly. Additionally, there is no way to verify if the property is being marketed to all potential buyers, which could be seen as unethical. Some agents believe that pocket listings undermine the MLS system, which is designed to provide equal access to all properties for sale. Others argue that it can create an unfair advantage for certain buyers or agents who have access to these exclusive listings.

In response to these concerns, some real estate associations have implemented regulations around pocket listings. For example, the National Association of Realtors has enacted a "Clear Cooperation Policy" that requires all properties to be listed on the MLS within one business day of being marketed to the public.

The trend of pocket listings has been growing in the DC region. In a recent Washington Business Journal article, Compass regional vice president Holly Worthington estimated that off-market transactions may comprise 20% or more of sales in today’s market.

See other articles related to: pocket listings

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/what_are_pocket_listings/20913.

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