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Question DetailsAsked on 6/20/2011

Flat-fee MLS services

I'm thinking of using a flat-fee MLS service to put my house for sale. A Google search finds a great many of these services, most of which charge between ~$300 and ~$600 to put a home on the MLS. The details of their offerings vary (e.g. number of months on the MLS, number of photos, etc). Some are members of the BBB, some aren't. Some of their web sites look very unprofessional, in my subjective opinion, but, other than comparing the details of their advertisements, I don't know how to compare these services or choose among them. I cannot find any objective evaluations, e.g. in Consumer Reports, and I cannot find any reports about flat-fee MLS services on Angie's List. Have you used a flat-fee MLS service, and would you recommend the one you used? Do you have any advice for a homeowner considering one of these services.

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5 Answers

0
Votes

Forgot to mention - I DID see someone on Angie's List gave ISOLDMYHOUSE.com an "F" rating. I got a very negative impression from talking to them, too. I'm hoping to hear from those who've used other flat-fee MLS services. Thanks.

Answered 6 years ago by NancyBoston

0
Votes

Hi NancyBoston,

You might find this article useful. It was featured in the May 2009 Angie's List Magazine. http://magazine.angieslist.com/Articles/2009/May/NATIONAL/online-information--b
oosts-home-buying-and-selling.aspx
.

Please let us know if we can help further!

Paul from Angie's List

Answered 6 years ago by Paul from Angie's List

0
Votes

Hi Paul,

Thanks - I've seen that article, and it makes the flat-fee MLS services sound very attractive. But it doesn't answer my question: how to choose from among all these similar-sounding services? The article mentions BuySelf, but I cannot find a report on BuySelf - or any other flat-fee MLS service - on Angies list. Should I interpret this article as an Angie's List Endorsement of BuySelf? If not, do you have any suggestions for finding an objective comparison, or even a "top 10" list, of these services? A Google search find thousands of sales pitches for these services, but no objective information for consumers.

Thank you,

Nancy

Answered 6 years ago by NancyBoston

0
Votes

Hi Nancy,

The gentleman quoted was one of many sources used in that article, so I would not consider it an endorsement of any sort. I think, like everything, it's up to the reader to take that information and interpret it how they choose. And like everything, you must do your research on your different options before making a decision. It sounds like you've done quite a bit of research already. If you're having trouble finding reports on these services on Angie's List, we have special staff dedicated for finding companies that might not be rated on the List. Contact us at 1-888-944-LIST (5478) and ask to speak to a local research expert.

Good luck!


Paul from Angie's List

Answered 6 years ago by Paul from Angie's List

0
Votes

I'm a real estate broker, and I offer flat fee real estate services in Northern Illinois. It's not something I've done a lot of yet, but it makes sense from all sides. While I take far less commission doing a flat fee listing, I get a listing, which attracts buyers to me.

The flat fee charge essentially pays for my time to administrate the listing and post it on the internet. I have different levels of service too, so my client can tell me exactly what he/she expects out of me and pay the associated fee. They can also add on services a la carte as well, such as an agent-hosted open house or a swinging yard sign instead of the kind you just stick in the ground. And I offer traditional commission structures as well, so if my client doesn't like the idea of a flat fee service, they can still work with me.

The dirty little secret in real estate, of course is that most listing agents do little more than put a listing in the MLS and forget about it until they get an offer. The buyer's agents, however, deserve their commission. When I'm working with a buyer, I take them all over the place, and I should get paid for it. So flat fee commissions aren't really flat fee if the company is doing it right. It's more like $X + Y% of the sale price, where Y is usually about half what most traditional commission arrangements charge. So for example, my base plan is $400 + 2.5% of the sale price. If the homeowner sells the house themselves, there is no 2.5% (not all companies do this). If I or another agent sells it, then there is.

Whatever you decide to do, just make sure you have a list of services and fees from the broker/agent so you know what you are getting for your money. Also know the rules for canceling the listing. In Illinois, we have statutory minimum services, which means that the agent MUST:

1) Accept and present offers and counter-offers

2) Assist you in the preparation of offers, counter-offers, etc.

3) Answer your questions related to negotiations in a real estate transaction

Source: http://www.ablerealty.biz

Answered 6 years ago by Able Realty




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