Flat Fee MLS Listing Services: Are They Really Worth It?
With a flat fee, traditional real estate listing services can save you money on commission fees, but there may be better options for most sellers. While the upfront savings can be tempting, there are risks involved that could cost you more in the long run.
With a flat fee approach, you will be responsible for all of the sale process, from marketing to showings to negotiations. This can be time-consuming and may not be worth the savings if you end up with a lower sale price due to a lack of experience.
Selling for sale by owner (FSBO) is another option, but it comes with challenges. You’ll need to take on all the work of a real estate agent, which can be daunting and overwhelming for most sellers.
However, there are alternatives to consider that offer significant discounts without the risks of a flat fee MLS listing service. For example, Sell My Houser negotiates low 1.5% listing fees with top realtors at significant brokerages. You’ll still get the full benefit of a local agent but at a fraction of the traditional commission rate.
Flat Fee MLS Listing Without a Realtor: The Pros and Cons You Need to Know
If you’re looking to sell your home, consider listing it on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) without the help of a realtor. While this can save you money on realtor commissions, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before deciding. This article will explore the advantages and disadvantages of a flat fee MLS listing without a realtor.
Pros of a Flat Fee MLS Listing Without a Realtor
You Can Pay Fewer Fees for an MLS Listing Than You Would with a Realtor
The most significant advantage of a flat fee MLS listing is the potential cost savings. You can pay a small fee to have your home listed on the MLS, which can help get your property in front of a wider audience of potential buyers.
A Flat Fee MLS Listing Can Saving You Money
If you have experience selling homes, a flat fee MLS listing can be convenient and cost-effective. You’ll have more control over the selling process, and you can avoid some of the fees associated with using a traditional realtor.
If the Home is in a Hot Property Market, You Might Want to List it on the MLS Without a Realtor
In a seller’s market, homes can sell quickly and for a high price. A flat fee MLS listing could be an intelligent choice if you’re confident in your ability to price your home correctly and negotiate with buyers.
Cons of a Flat Fee MLS Listing Without a Realtor
- Your House May Sell for Less – The biggest drawback of a flat fee MLS listing without a realtor is that your home may sell for less than it would if you had a real estate agent. Studies have shown that homes sold without an agent tend to sell for less than homes sold with an agent, and the difference can be significant.
- You Need to Pay a Buyer’s, Agent Fee Commission – Even if you use a flat fee MLS listing service, you’ll still need to pay the buyer’s agent commission. This can be around 2.65%, which can eat into any potential cost savings you may have gained from using a flat fee MLS listing.
- Selling Without a Real Estate Agent is a ton of work – Selling a home without a realtor can be a lot of work. You’ll need to handle all aspects of the sale yourself, including pricing your home, marketing it, and negotiating with potential buyers.
Selling a House Without a Realtor: Why It Can Be a Lot of Work?
Selling a house without a realtor can seem like an excellent way to save money, but it can also be a lot of work. Many motivated sellers choose to sell for cash to investors. Selling a property is time-consuming, and you’ll act as your realtor.
- Pricing a House Correctly – Another challenge of selling a house is pricing it correctly. This involves researching the local real estate market and determining the right price for your home. Pricing your home high can take too long, while pricing it low can cost you.
- Preparing a House to Sell – One of the most challenging aspects of selling a home is preparing it for sale. This involves cleaning, decluttering, and staging your home to make it look its best. It can be time-consuming and require a lot of effort.
- Finding a Qualified Real Estate Agent – Finding a qualified real estate agent can also be a challenge. You need to find someone experienced in selling homes in your area.
- Negotiating with Buyers – Negotiating with buyers can also be a challenge. You should be able to negotiate with potential buyers to get the best price for your home.
- Attracting Buyers – Once your home is listed, you need to attract buyers. This involves marketing your home, hosting open houses, and working with potential buyers to schedule showings.
- Filling out Paperwork – Finally, selling a house involves a lot of paperwork. You need to be able to fill out all the necessary forms and documents to complete the sale.
Benefits of a Flat Fee MLS Listing
Despite the challenges, there are some benefits to using a flat fee MLS listing service. The most significant advantage is that you can avoid paying a seller’s agent commission, which can add up to thousands of dollars. Instead, you only pay a small fee to list your home on the MLS.
What Is the MLS?
The (MLS) Multiple Listing Service is a database of properties for sale. Realtors use the primary tool to search homes for sale, and its property listings are posted to sites like Zillow, Redfin and Homelight. Getting listed on the MLS is vital for home buyer exposure
Flat Fee MLS Companies: Are They Right for You?
If you have experience selling homes, a flat fee MLS listing service may be a good option. These services can provide savings and convenience for experienced sellers, as they can avoid paying the high fees of traditional real estate agents. However, there are still some drawbacks to using a flat-fee MLS company.
The most significant disadvantage of selling without a real estate agent is that homes sold without an agent tend to sell for less. Studies have found that for sale by owner (FSBO), homes sell for anywhere from 5% to 30% less than agent-represented homes. By comparison, the average realtor commission is 5.37%.
Another drawback of a flat fee MLS listing service is that you still need to pay the buyer’s agent commission, which is, on average, around 2.65%. This means your total savings will only be around 2.5-3%, much lower than the potential loss from selling without an agent.
Selling a house is also a lot of work, and using a flat fee MLS company means that you’ll be acting as your own agent. This involves preparing your house for sale, pricing it correctly, finding buyers, negotiating with them, and filling out all the necessary paperwork. If you have experience marketing homes and negotiating with buyers, you can handle these tasks yourself. However, you may be overwhelmed by the amount of work if you need to be more experienced.
Despite these drawbacks, a flat fee MLS listing service can still be a good option for some sellers. If you live in a hot housing market where homes sell quickly, you can sell your home without needing an agent. Additionally, a flat fee MLS listing service may be a good fit for you if you prefer taking a more DIY approach and having total control over the selling process.
Nationwide flat fee listing services are available in most US states, but some companies offer more limited coverage. Before choosing a flat fee MLS company, research and see what services are available in your state. If you need help determining whether a flat fee MLS listing service is right for you, consider hiring a discount realtor to avoid costly mistakes.
Best Flat Fee MLS Listing Services for Sellers
If you’re looking to sell your home without a traditional real estate agent, then a flat-fee MLS listing service might be the way to go. These services allow you to list your home on the local MLS and avoid paying the high fees that come with hiring a realtor. But with so many providers, how do you know which one to choose?
The best flat fee MLS listing service for you will depend on several factors, including where you live, your experience selling homes, and what services you need. Some companies only offer an MLS listing, while others provide additional services like key boxes, disclosure forms, and closing assistance.
Here are some of the best flat fee MLS listing services available:
- Beycome: This service operates in Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Minnesota, North Carolina, and South Carolina and offers packages ranging from $99 to $499 plus 1% of the sale price.
- Houzeo: Houzeo is a nationwide provider offering packages ranging from $199 to $999 or more, depending on your needed services.
- Fizber: Fizber operates nationwide and offers a flat fee of $295 for an MLS listing.
- Homecoin: Homecoin operates in California, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin. Packages start at $95 and vary depending on what services you need.
- Flat Fee Realty: Flat Fee Realty operates nationwide and offers packages starting at $179.
- Flat Fee Group: Flat Fee Group operates nationwide and offers packages ranging from $75 to $1,499, depending on what services you need.
- ISoldMyHouse.com: ISoldMyHouse.com operates nationwide and offers packages ranging from $299 to $399.
- FSBO.com: FSBO.com is a nationwide provider offering packages ranging from $100 to $400, depending on your needs.
Make sure to do your research and compare prices and services offered. Remember that the best provider for you will depend on your specific needs and situation.
Is it Possible to Get an MLS Listing Without a Real Estate Agent?
Getting an MLS listing with a real estate agent is possible. Only licensed real estate agents or companies can post on the MLS. Flat fee listing companies have real estate licenses and can list your property on the MLS on your behalf. However, they provide a different level of service than a traditional agent, and you will be responsible for most of the work of selling your house.
Is Your State Minimum Service
Fourteen states in the US have minimum service laws for real estate brokers. These laws require brokers to provide a minimum level of service to clients, which goes beyond just an MLS listing. The exact services required by law vary by state.
If you live in a minimum service state, you could have to pay more for a than you would in states without these laws. But you can typically get better service. True flat fee MLS companies are usually unavailable in minimum service states, so opting for a discount real estate broker may be better. You’ll still get a discount on commission fees and a level of service that goes beyond the legal minimum.
Here are some tips to improve your flat fee MLS listing:
- Provide a detailed description of your property, highlighting specific features and benefits, such as brand-name appliances or a private backyard oasis.
- Invest in professional-quality photos that showcase your property in the best light possible.
- Price your home competitively by researching similar properties and considering location, size, age, recent renovations, and unique features.
- Use home-selling tools like yard signs, flyers, and lockboxes to spread the word about your listing and make showings easier.
- Pay attention to your obligations under the MLS listing service agreement, including notifying the company of any offers or when you officially close the sale.
By following these tips, you can make your flat fee MLS listing service stand out to potential buyers and increase your chances of selling your property quickly and at a reasonable price.