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“Off-MLS marketing is out of control,” says Jeremy Conway, a Michigan-based real estate sales consultant. “That friendly pocket listing has now become an epidemic.”

Conway adds that is some cities, more than 30 percent of inventories are withheld from the MLS with the sellers’ permission in order to control the market and fuel buyer interest.

While analysts remain divided on when or if the housing market will stabilize, it is certain that real estate agents will be required to continue shifting their tactics to cater to the evolving market. Clearly, the “back to basics” approach is a time tested and proven way to cultivate new business. However, the “on the side/off MLS” pocket listing approach, while not necessarily a new phenomena, can open up the agent to potential liability issues if one is not careful when using this approach to market properties. In either case, prudent real estate firm’s should always maintain a comprehensive E&O coverage to help them manage their risk in real estate transaction.

For more information, visit Norman-Spencer.com/TopTier.

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