The Austin multiple listing system (MLS) is the system of record for many but not all home sales. In most estimations it accounts for around 60-70% of the overall sales. So some homes sell without the MLS, and buyers often ask the question: “Why isn’t that home in the MLS?”.
There are several categories of homes that aren’t listed for sale:
- For Sale By Owner – regular resale homes where the owner/seller doesn’t want to employ a listing agent
- New construction – sometimes one or two of a builder’s homes may be listed in the MLS, but if the builder has an on-site sales agent, sometimes they don’t list all of their homes – the as yet unbuilt, the under construction and the completed inventory.
- Pocket listings – where an agent is marketing a home for sale by themselves privately. This might be to extend greater privacy to the seller, who may not want attention drawing to themselves (Sandra Bullock – call me when you’re ready to sell), or may not want to have their home in a presentation ready state all the time.
There are also inaccurate data sources which list homes for sale when they’re not. For example, Zillow or Trulia allow people to add their homes for sale directly to the site (the For Sale By Owner crowd), and sometimes the data they import from the MLS is just wrong – homes that sold three years ago are sometimes listed as active.
Then there’s the homes that have a “coming soon” sign out, but haven’t been added to the MLS yet. In some ways, this is the time when a home is worth the most (in a flat market):
- As time on market increases, the “market stigma” increases – the “why hasn’t this house sold yet” question that buyers ask means their perception of a home’s value is less.
- Buyers often feel that they should scoop up this “exclusive opportunity” before the rest of the crowd come along
- However: there are less people looking at the home or made aware of it, so the number of buyers looking at the home is diminished. The people that are looking (for example the people stalking homes for sale in Mueller Austin)
No matter why a home isn’t in the MLS yet, it’s possible to get your trusty buyers agent to find out more details and represent you in any potential purchase. Get in touch if you would like to find out more about any home in Austin. 512 215 4785