Ghost inventory

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Submitted by moneymaker on March 5, 2016 - 7:12am

Have a house nearby that has a sign out front that is not listed on sdlookup or redfin , probably in escrow but what is interesting is that redfin lists 6 more properties than sdlookup for this zip code and zillow lists an additional 27 more homes for sale so what is the real inventory for a particular zip? Is it what the MLS says?

Submitted by TeCKis300 on March 5, 2016 - 8:10am.

It's likewise the same for me with Zillow. Redfin seems to be consistently more up to date as well as having the latest listings. Looks like it syncs more regularly with the MLS?

Submitted by XBoxBoy on March 5, 2016 - 9:00am.

I've noticed that several houses in my immediate neighborhood that have gone pending are still shown by zillow as active. None of these houses show up on Redfin or SDLookup.

Submitted by bearishgurl on March 5, 2016 - 11:27am.

MM, the "ghost listings" you are seeing are likely "Exclusive Agency" aka "pocket listings" which are pretty common in older areas where if something comes on the market, it is usually one-of-a-kind and gets pounced on right away. For example, it is common for probate listings to be "pocket listings." Many agents keep lists of prospective buyers who have been waiting for months ... or even years to buy something in a particular micro-area (the agents "farm") or even a particular street. Often, there is no need for an agent who gets a listing in their longtime "farm" to market it on the MLS right away and offer a co-broke fee right out of the gate. Their seller can always consider any offer coming from a buyer represented by another agent and decide on a case-by-case basis whether they are willing to pay another 1-2% commission than they agreed to (to give the buyer's agent at least 2.5% of the commission) based upon the terms of the offer and accept, reject or counter the offer.

Hence, you won't typically find these listings on the major online MLS aggregators.

IIRC, zillow even shows photos and details of properties which haven't been listed or marketed in any way for many years.

Submitted by bewildering on March 5, 2016 - 11:57am.

Eventually these "Exclusive Agency" properties will turn up as "sold" listings on both Redfin and Zillow. I always find these listings curious as the prices are sometimes odd.

In my area we just had a flip sell within a day. Seemed very expensive for my area, but they did seem to do a lot of work on the house. This listing never got on Redfin and Zillow. One open day and gone.

Submitted by moneymaker on March 5, 2016 - 1:04pm.

Yeah I guess I miss the old days when realtors would put a sold sign out on top of their list sign. Not sure if this is done after accepting offer or at close of escrow though.

Submitted by bearishgurl on March 5, 2016 - 1:09pm.

moneymaker wrote:
Yeah I guess I miss the old days when realtors would put a sold sign out on top of their list sign. Not sure if this is done after accepting offer or at close of escrow though.
It's typically done when all the buyer's contingencies have been removed but many agents don't do it until the property has closed escrow. Then they leave their sign in the yard for another couple of weeks so all the neighbors can see that they were the agent who successfully sold the home (even if there was a buyer's agent involved in the transaction).

Submitted by flyer on March 5, 2016 - 3:52pm.

As BG said, we've had some friends and family who have sold property in around a week in some very exclusive areas recently to all cash buyers, and the homes were never listed on the MLS.

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