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Flat Fee MLS

By definition,Flat-Fee MLS refers to the procedure of a Seller placing their home on the market with a real estate Agent or Broker where the brokerage firm places the property into an MLS Service (Multiple Listing Service) for a flat fee or flat dollar amount verses the more traditional payment method of a percentage of a home's sales price.
This Flat Fee method of marketing real estate is becoming more popular with Sellers as they look for alternative methods to sell their home without paying a 6% commission. When a Brokerage firm is involved in a real estate transaction, the commission is often distributed between two sides; the "Listing Agent" side, and the "Buyers Agent" side. The "Listing Agent" is the Agent who places your home on the market and in MLS; the "Buyers Agent" is the Agent who brings the Buyer. In some cases, the Listing Agent may also represent the Buyer, but for the most part the Buyer will come from a separate source, being the Buyer's Agent.
Sellers use our Flat Fee MLS listing Service to get their home in front of "Buyers Agents", while eliminating a separate "Listing Agent" commission. This can reduce the amount of commission the Seller will pay by over 50%, as we as your "Listing Agent" won't be taking any commission percentage when the home closes, only the Buyers Agent will get a fee. The Flat Fee MLS listing Service includes an upfront fee and waives any other fees. For example, the graphic below compares our Flat Fee MLS transaction with a tradition 6% commission sale, in this case if the Seller pays only a 1% fee Buyers Agent fee, the savings is substantial, $12,051. The savings can even be greater if no "Buyers Agent" is involved.
Flat Fee MLS Comparison
When you list your home with our Flat Fee MLS listing Service and you as the Seller find the Buyer on your own the savings is greater. This is due to the amount you will save by not having to pay a Buyers Agent. In the example above, if no Buyers Agent was involved, the saving would be $14,551. The only fee paid by the Seller to get their home on the market would be the $449 Flat Fee MLS listing fee. Our Flat Fee listing is placed in the MLS giving you the same exposure you'd get with a traditional 6% Broker, plus the flexibility to work with "Buyers Agents", or to sell on their own and pay no Agents.
At ByOwner.com our Flat Fee MLS Listing gets you the exposure you need to get your home Sold. Your home will be included in all the highest trafficked websites including Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, Bing, Yahoo, AOL and in all the major brokerage sites. Yes, your For Sale By Owner, FSBO listing will listed alongside of the homes listed by ReMax, C-21, Keller Williams and all the other "traditional" brokerage sites.
The average seller who uses our Flat Rate MLS Listing, will save over $15,000. We give you the tools and exposure you need as a ForSaleByOwner to compete with every other listing in the MLS. But as you are in control of the savings.

What is the difference between a Flat Fee Listing and a For Sale By Owner Listing?

This is not an easy question to answer as the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) industry continues to evolve. In recent years, FSBO Sellers have found that if they listing their home with a Flat Fee Listing company, their home will get into MLS and their exposure to the market will be the same as with a traditional 6% Brokerage firm. 10 years ago, the definition of a ForSaleByOwner, FSBO Seller would have been someone whom marketed their home completely on the their own and was not in the MLS. Today, every savvy FSBO Seller is getting in the MLS with a Flat Fee Listing Service.

What Services Are NOT Included in Flat Fee MLS listing?

In most flat fee cases, the Broker will not be providing a full suite of traditional real estate Brokerage Services. The leading idea of a flat-fee listing is to gain exposure, with getting the FSBO Seller's home in MLS the top priority. Sellers are willing to forgo services in lieu of substantial savings.
The Seller will be responsible for showing their home to any perspective Buyers and generally will not get assistance in the pricing of their property, or with negotiating with Buyers. A popular term for this type of relationship between the Seller and the Flat Fee Company is called "Limited Service Broker". The amount of limited service, however varies from state to state, as some states have minimum services which Brokers are obligated to perform.

Do I need to sign a listing agreement for a Flat Fee Listing?

Yes you do, however the listing agreement will be quite different when compared to a listing agreement of a traditional 6% Broker. As mentioned above, a Flat Fee Listing is a "limited Service" listing, which means the Flat Fee MLS Broker is passing the savings of reduced Service and not participating in the Listing Agent commission. A Flat fee listing agreement, will allow the Seller to sell on their own and pay NO commission. There will also be a clause in the agreement where the Seller states how much they would like to offer to the "Buyers Agent". Again, if a Buyer's Agent is involved the Seller will be able to set the rate. These rates are often set at 1-3% of the sales price, which can save the Seller over 50% of the commission if an Agent is involved in the transaction. The MLS requires a fee to be disclosed when a property is placed in an MLS Service, the minimum fee allowed is $1. Restraint in using too low of a fee should be used if you expect Buyers Agents to bring their customers.
At ByOwner.com, we encourage Sellers to factor a Buyers Agent fee in their asking price of up to 3% of the selling price. A fee comparable to what is offered to other Buyers Agents on nearby homes will ensure your home is not overlooked.
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