Colorado Springs has been fortunate in that it has not witnessed the big swings that other markets have had. Colorado Springs has been lucky enough to have a slow, stable and strong growth in its housing market. In fact, Colorado Springs has had an average growth rate of 7% since 1992 and has not had the massive declines that other parts of the country have experienced.
However, there is a down side to the housing market in Colorado Springs. Property owners have been looking for brokerage options in selling their homes. The frequency of homes in the Colorado Springs area being bought and sold is exponentially more significant compared to the national average. This is due to the fact that there are many military related jobs as well as a mobile workforce associated with companies such as HP and Boeing. Since homeowners aren’t usually a fixture to the years of appreciation that properties accumulate, the high brokerage commissions are severely felt. Sellers therefore believe that their only alternative is to skip agent fees altogether by putting their property up as For Sale by Owner. However, there are other alternatives available, one of which is to utilize a flat fee listing on the Multi Listing Service (MLS).
Often times, listings are sold by buyers’ agents who sometimes work with a listing agent. Whether the listing agent sells directly to the buyer or works with the buyers’ agent, the commission rate is typically the same. Even when the buyer did not have an agent, the seller may not see any savings.
A MLS listing allows the seller to see some profit as the agreement with the listing agent is to list the property for a small, flat fee. The seller is responsible for showing the property and handles negotiations with the agent as the middleman. If the buyer’s agent is responsible for the sale, only the buyer’s agent is paid but the listing agent is not paid at closing. If a seller finds some aspects of selling a house difficult, a MLS broker can agree to take on additional functions for more money at closing but this is usually less than 1%.
Other than savings on commission payments, a huge benefit to using MLS for selling property in Colorado Springs is the effective exposure. Buyers and their agents can find data with MLS feeds and internet sites. A for sale sign is never sufficient in pulling in interested house hunters, especially, given the fact that many of them are not residents of Colorado Springs.
The MLS for Colorado Springs outreaches to neighboring areas such as Woodland Park, Falcon and others. Sellers are finding that the flat fee MLS listings offer is effective in selling anything from an urban to suburban property and a single family home to a condominium. No matter the type of property, the fact that a seller can save money by avoiding those steep commissions as well as gaining exposure to buyers, makes this alternative the best to hiring a broker. It is expected that more and more sellers will use this medium in the future.