Here’s why I tend to discourage sellers from listing homes as pocket listings.

In our competitive market, buyers and investors are looking for pocket listings because they think they’ll get a better deal on those properties. I get at least two or three calls a week from investors both in and out of the area looking for pocket listings. However, today I want to talk about why pocket listings are a bad idea.

First, what is a pocket listing? It’s a listing that an agent takes but doesn’t expose to the broader market. Instead, they keep it in their pocket and retain exclusive access to it.

So why do I think that selling a home as a pocket listing may not be in the best interest of sellers? It’s because turning a house into a pocket listing vastly limits the exposure of the property. If you properly market your home, you’ll generate enough interest to create a bidding war. That, in turn, will help you realize your home’s highest potential price. In California, the listing agreement that you sign with an agent outlines all the benefits of putting your home on the MLS, and it frowns on the idea of holding homes as pocket listings for the aforementioned reasons.

“Holding a home as a pocket listing limits how many buyers see it, which reduces the price you’re likely to get when you sell.”

There are some situations when a pocket listing makes sense, however, such as when you’re in the public eye or going through financial hardship or divorce. You might not want the entire neighborhood to know that you’re selling your home.

In this strong seller’s market, it might be a better idea to give your property a little time before you decide on an offer to allow as many buyers as possible to see it. I’ve seen a lot of properties enter and leave the market within just 24 hours. It seems like those sellers might just be accepting the first offer they received without generating a bidding war. That probably happened because the home didn’t spend enough time on the market to generate the appropriate level of interest.

If you have any questions about pocket listings or you’re thinking about selling your home, don’t hesitate to reach out to me by phone or email. I’d love to have a conversation with you.