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Pocket Listings Unethical?

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Recently I read the opinion of a Realtor who believed pocket listings to be unethical on the basis that the agent showing the property would be motivated to “steer” prospects to that property because the agent would get the full commission. Pocket listings are based on an agents understanding that would-be seller would accept a predetermined price but is unwilling to list in the customary way.  In the community where I do most of my work, this is often because the would-be seller is opposed to lots of strangers looking at his house.   Then there are occasions when the terms of the deal are not in keeping with market conditions (price is too high) but there exists a special reason the property is worth more.
My experience suggests that prospects want to see as many many options as possible.  I specialize in high rise homes in The Colony Golf & Bay Club.  I work with both buyers and sellers. Always do I show all the available listings to prospects, even in such cases where the price is lower or higher than their suggested budget would allow.
How many times have I witnessed a buyer walk into something that didn’t meet their stated specifications only to hear them , “this is just what I wanted!”   I think it’s my job to open the doors even at the risk that my commission will be somehow compromised, i.e. short sales, foreclosures and/or reduced seller commissions.
My mantra, as a Realtor is, help people and the rest will work out.  Further, I think the attitude of cooperation is ultimately the most important element between listing and selling agents.
Jill Kushner, Realtor
Downing-Frye Realty


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