Effective December 1st – “Pocket Listings” to disappear in the DC area

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Highland Realty, Inc 0225 099336

For many years and a variety of reasons, some Realtors obtain listings that are not shared on the multiple listing, thus closing out most of the competing real estate companies to sell the property. It also diminishes the property’s exposure to possible multiple offers and a higher sales price. Under the new rule, all listing agents and brokers in the DC area will be required to submit the listing to the MLS within one business day of marketing the property to the public.

Occasionally, there are acceptable reasons for “Pocket Listings”, otherwise known as “office or private exclusive listings”, when the owner is famous or simply does not want a lot of “meaningless traffic” through their property. This respects the property owners’ rights and is fully acceptable under the new guidelines. Listing agents will be allowed to submit a waiver when sellers request their property be kept off the MLS, but in return, agents will only be able to market that property one-on-one to another agent or to an individual buyer. There would be no for sale signs, no Internet listings, no email blasts, no open houses, and no direct mail.

How serious is the MLS provider? Starting December 1, 2019, the fines for non-compliance are $5,000 for the first infraction, $7,500 for the second and $10,000 for the third instance. The overall goal of this new policy to make listings more public is good for the real estate community and good for consumers, and it’s what our business should be about: providing better information and service to consumers.



Please contact us if you would like to receive:

  •          Market information about properties in your neighborhood
  •          A competitive market analysis for your personal residence
  •          A rental or sale market analysis for an investment property
  •          Assistance with a 1031 Exchange
  •          Information about affordable property management services
  •          Names of recommended home repair and remodeling services


Find any property in Northern VA at:   http://www.highlandagents.com/


Highland Realty, Inc.
5317 Lee Highway, Arlington, VA  22207


     Dave Rosenmarkle                                             Erika Echegaray
                        Broker/Owner                                    Property Management Specialist
       evad7777@gmail.com                                          Português - Español
             non sibi sed patriae                                 eechegaray03@hotmail.com

Comments (7)

Sham Reddy CRS
Howard Hanna RE Services, Dayton, OH - Dayton, OH

Our MLS has done away with that practice for residential listings years ago. Now they have 72 hours to upload a listing to MLS or face heavy penalties. This usually does not apply to commercial listings

Oct 20, 2019 09:45 AM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

I am in support of the proposal. A while ago buyers only want pocket listings and mls listings have no added value to most. They went straight to listing agent to have an edge using realtors on properties not available. 

Oct 20, 2019 12:01 PM
Dave Rosenmarkle
Highland Realty, Inc - Fairfax, VA
33 years of providing fully satisfying service!

Hi Sham, thanks for the info from Dayton.

Morning Sam, as you point out, there are buyers who will always refuse buyer agency representation no matter how badly their purchase turns out.




Oct 22, 2019 06:04 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

I hope you are enjoying a very productive summer.

Take care and be safe.

Aug 30, 2020 08:37 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

I hope all is going well for you and you are having an outstanding summer.

Aug 10, 2023 01:24 PM