You make the decision to sell your home. You select an agent, list it for sale and……nothing…it doesn’t sell. You then make the decision to let the home expire from the MLS system or cancelled/withdrew the listing with the agent you hired. It happens. Not every home sells and sometimes maybe you just changed your mind and decided to keep your home. In the first 6 months of 2019, we had over 1,200 listings in Palm Desert, CA expire/cancelled/withdrawn.
Then it happens, almost immediately, you phone starts ringing off the hook, someone is knocking on your door and your mailman is working overtime delivering all those letters and postcards.
You start to think, “if my home got this much activity while it was listed, I would have sold it many times over!” But the unfortunate reality is, when your home doesn’t sell, real estate agents, made to believe this is a great seller lead generator, start bombarding sellers to try to get them to relist with them.
There are hundreds of companies out there selling services to agents to help them with expired listing lead generation. What many don’t know is that this type of activity is actually a Multiple Listing Services and Realtors’ Code of Ethics Violation. There are currently multiple lawsuits filed against brokers engaging in this practice.
Just google – call expired listings or market to expired homes and you can see the 1000’s of services listed to help agents market to expired listings. Just another way to take hard earned dollars away from the agent and create undue stress and headache for a homeowner. An now, with many MLS Associations cracking down on this practice, agents and their broker’s can be fined. And it can be big……upwards of $15,000…..ouch!
In agents’ defense, this rule is “somewhat unclear” as it does not directly address expired listings, but the rule is clear in one aspect. And I quote: “Use of MLS Information clearly states that participants and subscribers are “expressly prohibited from using MLS information for any purpose other than to market property to bona fide prospective buyers or to support market evaluations or appraisals”. Using MLS information to call or contact sellers who’s listings have expired does not fall into this description of the rule and therefore is prohibited.
What Can you do?
You or the agent you worked with can call the local board and let them know what’s happening. Your agent should also add verbiage to the agent listing notes on the MLS to not contact the seller per the MLS Rule 12.11. The more specific information you have about agents violating these rules, the better.
This Type of practice reflects poorly on our Real Estate Profession
Many local boards receive calls from upset sellers who had their listings expire and then became inundated with calls, including robocalls, from agents trying to gain their listing. This is unacceptable. It’s damaging to the public’s perception of the real estate business, and it makes some sellers much less likely to work with the real estate profession again.
Avoid a Expired Listing
Work with Laura Lake Real Estate. We will work together to get your home sold. Visit our site and lean more about our real estate services. We offer solutions to sell your home such as traditional list, Instant Offer program and more.
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