Entry by Diane Wolta

FSBOs and limited MLS service...


I want to try to offer services to FSBOs. When they aren't ready to do a full listing agreement, hiring me as their Seller's Agent, what do all of you use as a written agreement to get their listing onto the MLS and I'd probably be offering to provide comparables for them too?

A full blown listing agreement doesn't seem right, and the listing addendum here in the document library, presumes a listing agreement.

Thanks for your feedback in advance!

Diane Wolta, Denver


Diane, what services were you planning to offer? If they include putting them in the MLS, then I would be real careful about NOT representing them. We have seen the folly of MLS Entry Only - it's ok to do some administrative tasks without a listing agreement but once you get into fiduciary areas such as the MLS, I would highly recommend that you use a listing agreement with an addendum, spelling out what services you are providing, what is the cost, and what you are not providing (you can see an example at the end of the workbook - either in your coursebook or in the Up and Running Guide).

I think we need to rethink what a listing agreement is: isn't it really is a representation agreement for sellers just like a buyer agreement is for buyers?

But things vary from state to state - any of you Colorado ACREs want to weigh in on your thoughts?


Not sure about CO but here in FL we can do transaction brokerage, put in MLS as long as there is a fee given to the buyers agent (if there is one). Putting it in the MLS will also alert the entire board thereby giving more exposure.

Then I do a consulting agreement to include negotiation, trans mgmt, putting it on my site, etc and take it to closing. Every MLS has different rules though, so I'd advise you to get in touch with yours and make sure that is allowed.

Great idea though! I've made lots of money working with FSBO's this way.

I don't care what state you are in or what your rules are (actually I do care). Use some common sense here.

A listing is a listing. We are charged with a responsibility to be up front with full disclosure with all clients no matter what services we provide or not. The absolute SAFE approach is to take the listing with your standard contract BUT make it very clear what services you are providing and what you are not providing. Put it in an addendum that is referenced from the listing agreement.

In Virginia, our MLS requires us to disclose "limited service" in the listing and we MUST disclose to the client what we will do and not do for the fee agreed to. Even if your state does not require that level of disclosure it is simply a good practice to protect your client, yourself and your broker.

As others have said before me; "consult you broker."

I am sure this will stir some comment!

I'm stirring, stirring ;-) Merv is correct - not that I don't think he normally is.

There are different MLS rules and regs, different broker policies, but I'm sure you would not be with the company you are unless your Broker was ok with consulting.

There is a way to do anything you want legally, you just need to know what that is. In FL we are fortunate enough to have access to an attorney for any legal matters. If your Board provides this, you may want to consult with them as well.

The only State that we know of, that has issues with calling yourself a consultant is PA - although I'm still not sure that you could still DO consulting, you just can't call yourself a consultant without being a Broker.

I think people make this harder than it has to be. It is actually quite simple as long as you disclose, are legal and your MLS and Broker are on board with what you want to do.

Tom Pickering, the illustrious leader in the field of what State allows what as with regards to CE credit may have some other thoughts to share as well.

Now, I'm fininshed stirring this pot, it's someone else's turn.

Having moved to North Cackilacky from Pennsyltuckey (local Red Neck humor) I can understand a little about the Broker requirement in PA. I earned my Broker's License and still maintain it there. Here in North Carolina, until last year, they manufactured Brokers from sale person's. You could actually tend Bar, Clean Cottages, Go to your Sale Person Classes prior to taking the exam required by the State RE Commission AND attend your Broker Classes that only required a test at the end of the hours in the classroom... not a State Exam for Brokers. In a period of less than 4 months, you could begin to handle Trust Account monies for the general public from your Bedroom Real Estate office - while still bartending and cleaning cottages, for cash.

PA requires a very in depth educational and experience regiment... one that will ultimately provide good experience and enough knowledge to be worth being called a real estate "Broker".

Fortuntely, NC has updated their requirements, but not by much (or enough).

I am sure with some education, the RE Commission in PA could be at least educated, but they will likely always require the Brokers License. PAR has a good communication line with the State RE Commission, we should educate them, Paula!

Yes... Guilty as Charged... Lurking at the Beach.

Bill - Enoying the Summer - Holt : On The Outer Banks, NC

What a great idea Bill!

We can educate them AND charge them onsulting fees for doing so! What Fun!

And what are you doing lurking at the beach?! Hopefully having some much needed downtime ;-)

For some reason, all Heck is breaking loose in FL, or maybe it's just my marketing beginning to kick in. I'm doing shortsales, foreclosures and FSBO's all using consulting, and then the regular deals too. Lots of out of the country clients since the dollar is so bad and we are in a tourist area.

The Brits and Irish, and a few Canadians are all jumping on this lucrative bandwagon. I finally hired a Buyers agent/assistant since I still have my medical issues to deal with, but oh what fun to list a house you've never seen, with a seller you've never met. (I feel a webinar comin on!) Especially at a HIGH rate of commission, or a high hourly fee.

I've got a subdivision in a shortsale right now. Guy thought he could buy property, spend money and put in roads, water, etc, and "if he built it, they would come."

He should have used a consultant to do an analysis for him, but now he's using me to get him out of this mess. Property is worth about a third of what he has in it.

There are many ways in what people call a 'down market' to make money in consulting!

"Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain."

This page contains a single entry by Diane Wolta published on June 25, 2008 9:20 AM.

Getting a Home Value When There's No Transaction was the previous entry in this blog.

I have a need to kick you in the marketing rear end (aka: butt) is the next entry in this blog.

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