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Going off the record? Things to consider about a pocket listing

If you’re getting ready to list your Scottsdale golf home for sale to find a new place in another Arizona golf community, you may be considering a pocket listing. Before you and your real estate agent choose to go off the record and hand-pick your potential home buyers, consider these points of a pocket listing.



A pocket listing just means that a home for sale is not listed in the Multiple Listing System (MLS). Some realtors refer to new listings or homes as “pocket listings” in that short time between securing the property to sell and getting all the marketing materials together to list the home on MLS (sometimes also called a “prelisting”). Then others choose to keep the property off the MLS and sell privately to other clients or realtors.
So why go with a pocket listing? Essentially, a pocket listing is a marketing strategy that appeals to those home buyers who like or are attracted to exclusivity, and those home owners who prefer more privacy.  A pocket listing also allows the seller and the seller’s real estate agent to target a very small and specific market pool.
By nature, a pocket listing does not reach many people. states that nine out of ten home buyers search online for real estate, making the MLS the number one marketing tool in a realtor’s arsenal. Putting a home for sale in the MLS creates exposure for that listing, similar competitive listings, and the realtor’s other listings.
Privacy is the number one reason for choosing to go with a pocket listing. Keeping the home sale quiet, or keeping details of the home out of public media, is a concern for some home owners, especially celebrities and public figures.
For the home seller, the concern of safety and privacy can be addressed now more than ever through state-of-the-art technology. Certain information can be restricted to the general public through the MLS, like the exact property address and the home owner’s name. Pictures can also be limited to show only those that don’t give away the location or personal details. Of course the address will be needed for anyone wanting to schedule a showing, but a pocket listing will certainly limit who sees it. The request for more information and to show the property will simply be filtered through the listing agent.
If the home seller is concerned about strangers in their home at all hours of the day and all weekend, you can also choose to limit the showings to certain times and days. This keeps the property accessible yet keeps the burden on the home owner to a minimum.
Another reason some people choose a pocket listing is they are concerned that the house will not sell right away, or a pocket listing may be used to “test the waters” before the sale goes public on MLS. Once a home is placed for sale in the MLS, there is a permanent record and if unsold, the property could earn an “unsellable” reputation, or lead buyers to think that the seller will entertain lower offers. While a legitimate concern, a pocket listing keeps viable buyers from seeing your property and can actually make a sale even less likely.
Wondering about golf course homes for sale in Scottsdale AZ, both on and off the record? The Matheson Team knows AZ golf homes and communities, as well as the other realtors who carry listings. We can help you find the perfect place or sell your Scottsdale golf home smoothly.
Don Matheson
Realtor | Founder
The Matheson Team – RE/MAX Fine Properties
21000 N. Pima Rd., #100, Scottsdale, AZ 85255
[email protected]
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