Bogus “New” Listings

Glenn Roberts of Inman News discusses the practice of removing a listing for a property, then re-listing it so that is doesn’t look, in the listing, like it has been on the market a long time.

The comments are all over the map. Here are some samples:

  • "The easiest way to reset DOM is to sign with a new real estate broker. But if a client is happy with our service, why should we lose the business and force them to go somewhere else just to reset the clock? As long as the client knows what’s happening, and you have the paperwork to back it up, there’s no ethical issue at all. In fact, if you know the practice works, not recommending to a client could be an ethical violation."
  • "Unfortunately perfectly fine homes are overlooked because of days on market. It could be argued that this practice keeps these homes from being excluded by this stat. Also, MLSs allow it so it must be ethical. If they had a problem they could change it."
  • "It is a violation in every MLS I am familiar with. Furthermore the more you mess with the data in the MLS the more fire power the DOJ, and others have to call for further regulation."
  • "I can’t believe some of the comments on this. Some of you actually think that it is an acceptable "strategy"? If others do it, so should you?!? If you worked at a grocery store, would you change the "sell by" date on the milk so you wouldn’t have to throw it out? And then you wonder why real estate agents are near the bottom of the list on consumer confidence and respect. Please, please find another career."

My feelings couldn’t be clearer: this practice is misleading, skews days on market data, and is unethical. One of the commenter’s on Inman suggests that because an MLS “allows” the re-listing practice that there is no problem with it. Considering the many issues that the public has with the nature of an MLS “holding information hostage,” I don’t think this argument holds much weight. I believe that this practice contributes to the “used car salesman” reputation that most of us in the industry fight every day.

Anyone want to buy used car? Real cheap…got a whole truckload from Nawlins last month… oh no worries about those water marks…

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