Frequently Asked Questions
Flat Fee FAQ
WHAT IS AN MLS?
multiple listing service (MLS) is an effort among real estate
brokers to share data about homes for sale and to cooperate
with and compensate each other for assisting with the sale. MLSs create the most comprehensive computerized database of
homes for sale and the majority of real estate sales are a
direct result of MLS exposure. When you see a home for sale
on any real estate website, that information probably came
from the MLS database. The MLS is the tool real estate
professionals use to keep informed. Through
ListSmartTexas .com, this “prized possession” of real
estate brokers is now available to home sellers at a fraction
of the price.
If I listed with a 6% company,
what are the chances of that agent also selling my home?
Less than 5%
of listing agents actually sell the homes they list. Why? They
simply use the power of the MLS by listing their properties
for thousands of agents to bring their buyers respective
buyers. 85% of home buyers use a Realtor to help them locate a
property. Why is this important? The answer is simple,
Realtors use to the MLS to search properties for their
clients. The flat fee listing method lists your property on
the same MLS as the local REALTORS. You can put the power of
the MLS to work for you and save a minimum 3% commission minus
What is the difference in List
Smart Texas as opposed to the 'National' Companies such as
'National' Companies, List Smart Texas is licensed only in
Texas and its main focus is in North Texas Counties presently.
Is it true that most houses are
sold through REALTORS and they usually sell for more?
to the National Association of Realtors, homes listed on the
MLS average a higher net of 7% more.
How can your services help
lower the price of my home?
If you list
with a REALTOR and pay a 6% commission, you may need to
increase the price of your home to defray your high commission
expense and end up with the healthy bottom line you desire.
With our program, you practically eliminate the real estate
listing Commission. This allows you to lower the asking price
of your home, making it available to more buyers and more
competition with other properties currently for sale.
How long can my property be
listed on the MLS?
listing period is 6 months; to extend, see the change form
under "Forms &
Will my house be listed on the
REALTOR.com web site and others?
REALTOR.com is the largest online property listing site with
more than one million five hundred thousand available houses
nationwide. This accounts for about 80% of all available
houses in the U.S. Each month the site attracts more than 5
million potential buyers.
If I sell my home 'by owner'
how much will it cost me?
If you sell
your own home to an unrepresented buyer - you only pay the
initial flat fee of $499.
Will my listing be different
than other listed properties paying a full commission?
listing will appear exactly the same as any other listing with
a "Full Price" REALTOR
How long does it take to get my
house in the MLS?
can have your property listed the next business day after
payment is received and all paperwork is sent in completed.
How long does it take to get
the sign & Lockbox?
Why do I need to be listed in
To gain the
greatest exposure! There is simply no substitute for the power
of the MLS!
How do I know the MLS
information is correct?
We will email
or fax you a copy of the MLS listing for you to review. After
you have looked over the listing, we will immediately make any
and all changes that you request within the MLS rules.
When you enter my listing in
the MLS, is there a special number to identify my property?
assigns a specific number so Realtors can easily identify your
If a REALTOR does sell my home
do I have to pay the REALTOR a commission?
Yes. When you
fill out the documents to list with us, you are asked how much
commission you'll pay to the buyers' agent. Most sellers
offer a commission of three percent. After you have entered
this amount into the MLS it is NOT negotiable.
the MLS and who owns it?
The answer to your question differs depending on where you
live. In most areas, the MLS is a corporation owned/controlled
by the local association of Realtors. To input listings, you
generally must be a licensed member of the area's association
of Realtors (we and/or our affiliate brokers hold this
membership in most areas). MLS Members cooperate by showing
and selling the homes listed by other members, for which they
receive a commission for bringing the buyer to the seller. The
commission amount offered to the agent who brings the buyer is
almost always listed (usually required by the MLS) along with
the detailed information about the home and picture(s).
The MLS is the primary tool agents use to find a property when
they have a buyer. Over 80% of buyers use agents to help them
find properties (especially the most motivated buyers:
relocations, pre-approved, etc.). For most agents, the MLS is
the tool used every day to find a home for their buyers (for
many agents, it is the only tool they use to find
homes.) The MLS is not available to the public, only MLS
Members can view the MLS listings. In recent years, most MLS
systems have distributed some listing information to websites
like Realtor.com and allowed MLS members to show some listing
information on their own websites.
What telephone number will be on my MLS
All buyers and agents with buyers would be instructed to
contact you directly.
How do I know if the buyer will get approved
for a mortgage?
Many buyers today get pre-approved for a mortgage before they
begin to look at homes, especially buyers who work with agents
who often make that a requirement before homes are viewed. The
buyer should present a pre-approval letter on the letterhead
of a mortgage lender and signed by a loan officer. If the
buyer does not have such a letter, you should not accept the
offer until they have obtained one. Many lenders can provide
these letters to a buyer within 1-2 days after the buyer
completes the application and submits the required paperwork.
Requiring a pre-approval letter keeps you as the seller from
having to determine whether the buyer will qualify for a loan
and makes the process much simpler.
WHAT IS A KEYBOX, AND HOW DO I GET IT?
keybox is a device that holds a key to your house. Only
licensed real estate agents have access to this device. If
you want your home available for viewings even when you aren’t
home, keyboxes are wonderful and a real convenience for real
estate agents and homebuyers.
you would like to take advantage of this option, we will ship
it to you. Please don't put your
only key in the box, as only real estate agents have access to
the box through their secure codes. The fee for this service
is $195 with $100 refunded to you once we get the keybox back.
CAN I DO ADDITIONAL MARKETING ON MY OWN?
Sure, you can advertise wherever you choose. Newspaper ads
can be part of a marketing program, but only 1% of sales are a
direct result of newspaper advertising. Most For Sale By
Owner ads result in many calls from real estate agents looking
for listings, and few calls from qualified buyers.
Do I have to sign a Listing Agreement?
Yes. We are required by both Texas Law and the
Policies of the MLS system to have the Listing Agreement
signed before we can place your listing on the MLS.
How long does it take to get my home on the
We promise to have your home listed on the MLS by
the close of business on the next business day (Mon-Fri)
following the day when you complete all the required steps.
We will NOT list your home on the MLS until you have completed
you documentation. We will list without photos, but, we very
much PREFER that you provide your photos prior to our listing
your home on the MLS.
Is the MLS the best way to sell my home?
Actually, we think so! Statistically, the
overwhelming majority of homes in our area are sold through
Can I sell By owner while my home is listed on
Yes. That is the great thing about how we do
business. We want you to sell your home at a minimum of
cost. We pride ourselves in offering the same marketing
services that any “traditional” agent does. We just do it at
much lower cost.
How do people find my home when it is listed on
They have to go to a “portal” website such as
REALTOR.COM or a local or national real estate broker’s
website such as EBBY.COM, CBDFW.COM, etc. The actual MLS is
not available to the general public but the basic MLS
information is displayed for public viewing on REALTOR.COM and
various MLS Member Broker websites.
Do I need a Showing Service?
Yes, we think so! While a showing service is a
convenience, not a necessity, we highly recommend it to our
sellers. A showing service is much easier on both you and on
the Real Estate Agent because the showing service has staff
manning the phones 12 hours a day. The showing service phone
numbers are well known to the Buyer’s Agents. It is very
convenient for them to use. If you do not use a showing
service you will need to keep a phone nearby at all times to
avoid missing a call from an Agent who wants to show your home
to a buyer.
The main benefit of a showing service is the
convenience, but they are also good for keeping a schedule of
who showed your home and they do attempt to obtain good
feedback from the Selling Agent on their perspective Buyer’s
comments about your home. Some Sellers find such comments
Can I use a For
By Owner Sign?
Yes, but we do recommend that you use a List
Smart Texas For
Sale sign. It makes Real Estate Agents more comfortable
showing your home when they know their commission is
protected. Besides, you get one FREE sign with your Listing
Does newspaper advertising help?
Yes, but not as much as you might think. In
Dallas there have been surveys that indicate as
many as 90% of all home buyers use the Internet to find a
home. By using the local newspaper you are spending a lot of
money to reach people that are already being reached when you
list on MLS.
How Many Photos Can I send?
You can send us up to 40 photos. We can place up to
36 photos on the MLS system. Not all websites will display
all 36 photos. REALTOR.COM displays a maximum of 6 photos.
Local Websites will display all 36(EBBY&CBDFW), but not all
will display all 36. It is up to each local website to decide
how many photos they will display.
Can I really do this on my own?
The majority of sellers taking advantage of Flat Fee Listing
Services handle the sale and negotiation of their property
themselves. However, real estate transactions often require a
level of professional expertise that is beyond the capacity of
ordinary home owners (and brokers). We recommend you consider
a licensed professional for all matters regarding home
inspection, home appraisal, real estate, law and any other
matter for which you are not qualified to address.
do you serve?
Texas MLS Listings Services are available in TX, including
Collin, Cooke, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Erath, Fannin, Grayson,
Henderson, Hill, Hood, Hunt, Johnson, Kaufman, McLennan,
Navarro, Palo Pinto, Parker, Rockwall, Smith, Somervell,
Tarrant, Van Zandt, Wise, and Wood Counties. We are working
on coverage in other cites so stay tuned!
What if I
sell the house on my own?
Then you pay
Can I pay
less than 3% to a Buyer’s Agent?
is no “standard commission rate”, the prevailing market rate
on just about 99% of all listings is 3%. ListSmartTexas is a
buyer agent friendly company and does not want to give any
Realtor an excuse for not showing your house to one of their
buyers. However, one of the great things our company offers
that most companies do not, is that if you find a buyer who is
unrepresented by an agent you do not have to pay the 3%
commission. It’s yours to keep!!
Why do I
have to submit the request forms to you?
In order for
a brokerage to list a home on the MLS, they must have some
sort of listing agreement from the seller, granting the
brokerage the right to list the home on the MLS. It is
impossible for a brokerage to list a home on the MLS without
the seller’s permission. Each MLS also requires that the
proper profile sheet be filled out prior to submitting the
listing on the MLS.
What if I
can’t find all the information on the MLS profile sheet?
Do your best
to find the information, however, there are a few things you
may not know such as map code/grid, listings office codes,
etc. If you leave something blank, we may know it or be able
to find it in the tax records. The things we can usually not
find are information that only you would know, such as
interior features or your own marketing remarks.
my property be listed on REALTOR.COM?
usually receives the data from your MLS listings at least
48-72 hours after activation. Please understand that the MLS
and REALTOR.COM are two very different things. If you have
any questions regarding the differences in the two, please
contact us directly and we will be happy to give you a