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Are you clever and savvy ?

In a nutshell, a pocket-listing is a property that is technically for sale, but agents or buyers won't find it listed on the local Multiple Listing Service, or MLS database or anywhere else on the Internet.  It’s the other way properties are sold in the United States.  In fact, today roughly 10% of all properties sold in the United States, are sold as pocket-listings by savvy sellers.  And they have some pretty good reasons why they choose to sell privately.

What are The Advantages of Selling Privately, Using a Pocket-Listing Contract?


A pocket-listing can be used by an educated seller for different reasons. It could be to sell quickly or in preparation to sell in the next few months or in a year or two. This gives savvy property owners the opportunity to also test the market in a limited capacity, for the price they want, without risking negatively stigmatizing their property, because it sat too long on the open market at a higher price. The pocket listing seller wants to see, if they can be motivated to sell, through the implied proposition of, “make-me-move!”

Wealthy individuals for instance, including celebrities, often sell their property privately, without listing them on MLS or anywhere else publicly.. They prefer to only show the property to buyers that have been pre-screened and are ready, willing and able to purchase their property.  They value their privacy and don’t want people touring their home, or it becoming a tourist attraction to buyers, who aren’t serious or qualified to purchase their property. You don't have to be wealthy or famous to take advantage of the benefits of selling privately!  You just need to know what the benefits are and why it may be the smartest way, to sell your property.

What are the disadvantages of selling off-market or as a pocket listing?  Like most things in life, there is a positive and negative aspect to using this sales effort.  A pocket listing is not for everybody.  Principally, properties sold this way, will have limited exposure to the highest number of potential buyers, and to perhaps, a buyer who may be willing to pay more.  The marketing of the property is limited, since it cannot be advertised anywhere, outside of the listing brokerage. 

Basically, there are three types of private sellers.  Each has a different reason for listing their properties for sale, off-market. However, they all have one thing in common. They understand the dynamics involved, when selling real estate. They are practical and smart!  See below to learn about the type of seller you are or could be.

Testing the Market Seller

This type of property owner, may not be seriously thinking of selling today. Perhaps, they've sold a property or two and understand the importance of testing the market first, before placing their property on the MLS, to see if their property will attract the price they want today. If they get their price, without going through an open-market sale, the better!  It may even prompt them to sell and move on, to a new adventure, without the pressure of an open market sale! This is a very attractive option, for the property seller who is not in a hurry to sell, since it helps them avoid the gaze of the public eye, provides privacy and protects the property from any stigma that can develop, if the property is initially priced too high, and it remains unsold on the MLS, longer than the average of days on market.  This type of seller is practical, they like to plan, are open to selling now, for the right price and understand their options, when selling property.  

The Quick Sale Seller-

This type of seller knows that value sells, and like the market testing seller, has typically sold a home or two. They know that if they desire to sell quickly, they have to price their property competitively.  This type of seller also understands the dynamics of selling real estate, values their privacy and wants to avoid the trouble and constant interruptions from buyers, seeking appointments. They typically sell their properties below the market value, since they can offer buyers a better price, due to a reduced commission on the sale. They understand that a lower asking price, makes their property more attractive to buyers, when buyers compare their property to the competition.  By passing on the commission savings to buyers, it helps them sell faster and still get what they want for their property.  

If you want to learn more about the advantages of selling privately, give us a call or click on the button below, to schedule a private consultation.


We are here to help you get the most from your next real estate transaction, without sacrificing your privacy.

Make-Me-Move Seller- 

Perhaps, this is the savviest pocket-listing seller of all!  This type of educated seller may want to sell their property in a year or two, and much like the market testing seller, would consider selling today, if they could fetch a certain price.  They understand that working with a broker early on, and listing the property privately as a pocket listing, before being ready to sell in the open market, has its advantages. For one, they can test the market and see if their broker can find a buyer, willing to pay what they want, without exposing their property to any negative selling consequences. They also value the time they have to evaluate their agent, before listing the property in the open market. In the interim, if their broker finds a buyer, they have the option to sell or wait longer. Additionally, they can be kept informed about their property's value and market conditions by their broker, over time. This information gives them a better grasp of market trends in their neighborhood and helps them be more adept in identifying down or up markets. They are smart, astute and always in control!  They are savvy and  shrewd property sellers, who challenge buyers to "make them move"!


When listing your property as a pocket listing, you will be asked to authorize your broker, in writing, that your wish to opt-out of public marketing of the property.  The MLS has  policies in place, like the "Clear Cooperation Policy", which are meant protect the public against unfair housing practices and give sellers notice, of all their selling options, when working with a real estate broker.  

Due to copyright restrictions, the Seller Opt-out Form, the Syndication Opt-out Form and the Office Exclusive / Exempt Listing- Exclude from MLS forms are not published here.  We will gladly email you the forms, upon request and answer any of your questions.

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