Can You Keep A Secret....It's In My Pocket And It's Staying There!!

By
Managing Real Estate Broker with RE/MAX Executive Realty
http://actvra.in/HVY

Tom Branch wrote a featured post titled “Are Hip Pocket Listings Really a Good Thing” and I’d like to share my thoughts on that topic.  My team and I are listing agents and every listing we secure is immediately submitted to MLS.  This is our rule with one exception.  Give me a moment to find my bulletproof vest!!

Whenever we search for tracts of land, we explain to the seller that if they list the land with us, it will not be submitted to MLS.  If we sell the land to a developer, and we secure the listings, we will not charge a commission on the sale. 

This type of agreement can be called a “pocket listing” or it can be referred to as “good business sense.”  There is nothing more discouraging than to have an agent introduce a developer to a tract of land and not know how to proceed from there. 

If we don’t submit the listing to MLS, we can eliminate handing an agent, with his/her head in the sand, a parcel of land for 100 new homes.  That would happen over my dead body!!!

Tracts of land are a rare entity in my area.  If another agent who is seasoned on the subject of land sales and new construction has a developer/builder, and we can work out an equitable split of listings, we’ll do a deal.  But we will not have a gun to our heads to co-broke a tract of land; do all of the tedious work for 2 years to obtain approvals; and not receive listings.  You can call it whatever name comes to mind.  I call it good business sense.

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Rainmaker
891,836
Michael Setunsky
Michael's Commercial LLC - Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Barbara, as long as you receive your direction from the seller and they agree, I don't see it as a problem.

September 20, 2012 05:13 AM #43
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Michael.... I always have their blessing.... and if not, I may pass on that parcel of land rather than get "fouled up" with a novice agent's deal....

September 20, 2012 05:30 AM #44
Rainmaker
512,663
Russell Lewis
Realty Austin, Austin Texas Real Estate - Austin, TX
Broker,CLHMS,GRI

Good points here but the idea of pocket listings still seems to be confusing to Realtors and the public alike. I work pocket listings and in many instances they do have a valid place in the business. I guess I better post my own article on the subject....

September 20, 2012 05:46 AM #45
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Russell.... I'd love to read your thoughts on this topic....

September 20, 2012 05:48 AM #46
Rainmaker
324,575
Mike McCann - Nebraska Land Broker
Mike McCann - Broker, - Kearney, NE
Farm Land For Sale 308-627-3700 or 800-241-3940

Pocket listings are very similar to listings held by a non-MLS member.  Not a bad thing if you know how to work them in the sellers favor.  Everything always leads back to the seller and what is in the sellers best interest and what a seller agrees to.

September 20, 2012 05:54 AM #47
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Mike...yes, that's the bottom line..... if it's in the seller's best interest, it's a good path to follow....

September 20, 2012 06:01 AM #48
Rainer
202,075
Nan Jester
Exit Real Estate Gallery Jacksonville Beach, FL - Jacksonville Beach, FL
Realtor, Exit Real Estate Gallery

You really have it figured out.  Great business sense.

September 20, 2012 07:57 AM #49
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Nan..... it's not difficult....it's doing what makes sense for the seller....

September 20, 2012 08:12 AM #50
Rainer
157,536
Anthony Daniels
Coldwell Banker - San Francisco, CA
SF Bay Area REO Specialist

In/around sF, we have numerous pocket listings.  You often see them advertised in Craigslist.  Perhaps they need to come up with a new category search.........SLEAZY PEOPLE POSING AS AGENTS SHILLING PROPERTIES.

Our DRE could generate some serious revenue, by trolling those online listings for violations.  Check it out sometime.

However, I do see your point about the vacant land listings.

September 20, 2012 08:15 AM #51
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Anthony..... there's a professional reason and a sleazy one... I distance myself from the sleazy agents...they have no interaction with me or my business.... and I'll keep it that way..... the fines could be big bucks... maybe that could reduce some of the costs of doing business for professional agents....

September 20, 2012 08:26 AM #52
Rainer
38,026
Erika Madsen
Fathom Realty - Gilbert, AZ
Fathom Realty - Southeast Valley District Director

AGREED!! I have been in the business for over 15 years and I would have NO clue how to properly handle a sale that included land development - and I wouldn't want to "wing" it either - a sale of that size/price also brings a higher level of cost if you don't know what you need to know for your client's protection.

September 20, 2012 09:57 AM #53
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Erika.... right.... this is not a listing you throw into mls for everyone to dive into....

September 20, 2012 10:10 AM #54
Ambassador
1,229,022
Erica Ramus
Erica Ramus - Ramus Realty Group - Pottsville, PA - Pottsville, PA
MRE, Schuylkill County PA Real Estate

Interesting thoughts. We don't see much development going on here, and no new housing developments going up. But it's a great way to protect your future!

September 20, 2012 10:45 AM #55
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Erica..... it works for me....

September 20, 2012 10:59 AM #56
Rainmaker
785,757
Paula McDonald
Chevaux Group, PLLC - The Woodlands, TX
CHEVAUX Group ~ The Woodlands, TX 936-203-0279

I sell a lot of land to developers and yes you must keep yourself ahead of what is going on. I enjoy working with other agents who have been down this road before and know the ropes.  Those who are out of their area of expertise have no business selling this type of property.  Pocket listings can be diamonds in the rough for developers.

September 20, 2012 11:01 AM #57
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Paula... developers never expect to find tracts of land in MLS.... if they are in MLS they're usually junk....

September 20, 2012 11:04 AM #58
Ambassador
1,506,149
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Barbara, that sounds like a plan that has worked successfully for many years, and something that just came to your mind because of a tract of land that might have just become available. Good Luck

September 20, 2012 11:14 AM #59
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Ed.... I wish I had a tract of land right now..... it would have been sold the day I learned of it..... none of my land listings that are developable will go into MLS.... tough parcels are submitted and usually do not sell as subdivisions but rather parcels for a professional building or other use. 

September 20, 2012 11:19 AM #60
Rainmaker
430,498
Adam Brett
The Adam and Eric Team - Fullerton, CA
The Adam and Eric Team, Setting the New Standard

You go girl, I couldn't agree more.

September 20, 2012 12:00 PM #61
Rainmaker
1,938,745
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"New Franklin MA Homes"

Hi Adam..... that's the way it is....

September 20, 2012 12:03 PM #62
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