Pocket Listings

More Info On Listings

You can tell it is a seller’s market by different stats; no inventory, homes sell quickly, multiple offers. Also, pocket listings are back.

According to Wikipedia a pocket listing is a listing that a broker takes from a seller and does not put it into any multiple listing service and in no way lets other agents know that there is a listing.  Can they do this if they are a member of a MLS group?  I believe that is legal to do if the listing agent gets a statement from the seller allowing this.

Why Would A Broker Do This?

They want to double-end the sale and get both the listing fee and the selling fee. They would want exclusivity for say 30 days.

What do they tell the seller? Perhaps, they say that this arrangement will keep thousands of looky-loos from tramping through their house and all offers will be handled by our company, your friend and savior. So no low ball offers and hard sell agents to meet.

Also, they might mention that since they will have both sides, they can discuss a lower commission.  What can go wrong for a seller?  If the property is not being exposed completely to the market, they could be missing out on some above listing price offers. BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!

My Pocket Listing Story:

Years ago I was syndicating apartment houses in the San Fernando Valley and saw a fine listing of a large apartment in the paper.  Most apartment and commercial properties are never put into multiple. In fact, almost all agents working these type sales are not even members of multiple or Realtors. So I called the ad to see if the company would cooperate and share the listing.

The Listing Company Was A Large, Well-Known, National Company

The agent dismissed me with the statement, “We do not cooperate on our listings during the first 30 days of listing.” Obviously, this was to give them a chance to double-end. Nothing I could do. I called back in 30 days, but it was in a solid escrow.

Some months later I had a fine listing on a 100 unit house and since I was the General Partner, I gave myself an Exclusive Authorization to Sell. This was authorized in the Partnership Agreement with the Limited Partners.

I got a call from another agent from said large company. I said that my company had a policy that we did not cooperate for the first 30 days of the listing.  He was not happy.

I Knew What Was Coming

A few short minutes later I got a call from the agent’s general manager with whom I was acquainted.  He said, “What are you doing?” I said that I had been given this same policy from his company a few months before, and thought it was such a good idea that I adopted it. Loved that phone call. Not that it is important to the story, but the manager’s name was Bob Selleck. Tom, his son was a USC basketball player and nice person, who worked around the office. He was a good round baller but turned out to be a much better actor & RM figurehead.

Rest of the story: I got a super offer from another syndicator whom I knew and the seat is history.

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