Here is the second blog in this series!
(2) “You might never get the chance to buy your dream house”
This recent article proposes that homes for sale are kept off the MLS by REALTORS, cheating some buyers out of the opportunity of making an offer on a home. The term for a home for sale that is not listed in the Multiple Listing Service is a “Pocket Listing”. The suggestion is also made that some agents keep listings private, sharing them only with agents in their own office in order to boost their brokerage’s sales or to pass business off to select agents.
In Lubbock I hear about pocket listings but these are sometimes homes that are “coming soon”. The seller may have engaged an agent but is painting or making repairs before the listing is made active. Likewise, a seller may talked to a REALTOR about selling their home, but intend to wait till summer or even the following year. An agent will have this property in mind and notify the seller if they hear of a buyer looking for a similar home. Agents with this type of pocket listing may begin spreading word in the real estate community that the property will be available.
There are certainly reasons a buyer may never succeed in buying their dream house. First, they may simply not have the finances to buy the home of their dreams.* Others miss out on their dream home because they make ‘low ball’ offers or refuse to negotiate. REALTORS provide guidance for offers and strategies for negotiating based on experience and research of comparable SOLD properties.
Considering our local market, and recognizing I may not be privy to all the wheeling and dealing, I consider premise #2 to be incorrect, and think it should be of little or no concern to buyer’s in our area.
*It is very disheartening for the buyer AND the agent to look at homes in a certain price bracket and then discover that they are approved to buy a home that costs much less. All buyers should get pre-approved before they start shopping for a home.