Re-Listing a Salt Spring property

Re-Listing Don’t be tricked into thinking it’s a new listing

Why I, Scott Simmons, dislike the practice of re-listing any property on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®).

What is Re-listing?
If a property does not sell in a significant time frame, the listing agent can, with permission of the owner, re-list the property on the MLS®. The property can be withdrawn (canceled) from the MLS® and then, at a later time (or even on the same day!), be listed back on the market as a “new listing”.  The history of the old listing is available to realtors, but not the public.

Would you buy a car if you knew the mileage was rolled back? Could a car lot change the date on a model from 2006 to 2008?  Of course not, the car dealer would be charged with fraud.  However, it is common practice in the real estate business to misrepresent a property’s original “for sale” date by re-listing it.  For example, in the fall of 2008, one Salt Spring agent re-listed 20+ properties. The agent told me the properties had “too many days on the market” and needed to be freshened up!  In this era of full disclosure, how can re-listing happen on a regular basis?

Re Listing

In the list displayed above, compare the second home with the last home.  The same house on Le Page goes from 186 days on the market to 1 day on the market!!!

The practice of re-listing can skew the perception of market activity and lead to misrepresentation of true market trends.  For example, re-listing can affect the statistics for:

Days on the market
Percent of asking price paid
Canceled and withdrawn homes
New listings

Here is an example of re-listing:
Jan 1 listed $800,000
March 1 re-listed $700,000
May 1 re-listed $600,000
May 15 sold $590,000
Days on the market 15
Percent of asking price 98.3%
Number of new listings 3
Number of listings withdrawn 2

Now here is the same house without re-listing:
Jan 1 listed $800,000
Price adjustment $700,000
Price adjustment $600,000
May 15 sold $590,000
Days on the market 136
Percent of asking price 73.75%
Number of new listings 1
Number of listings withdrawn 0
It is the same house, but what a difference in the statistical results.  Not only are the statistics manipulated, but what about the buyer who buys thinking it is a new listing?  Most buyers don’t know to ask if the house was previously listed for sale and canceled or withdrawn or expired.  If the buyer asks the listing agent, “Is this a new listing?” s/he could say, “Sure is!” and s/he would be telling the truth, just not the whole truth.

Bill 41 REAL ESTATE SERVICES ACT Province of British Columbia 2004 states:
(2)    A licensee commits conduct unbecoming a licensee if the licensee engages in conduct that, in the judgment of a discipline committee,
(a)    is contrary to the best interests of the public,
(b)    undermines public confidence in the real estate industry, or
(c)    brings the real estate industry into disrepute.

In my opinion, re-listing “is contrary to the best interests of the public” and I think it “undermines public confidence in the real estate industry.

Re-listing is deceptive in nature.  It should not be allowed.  In other areas, the practice of re-listing has been banned on the MLS® systems.  Agents are required to wait for 30 days before re-listing the same property.  Many jurisdictions in the USA have adopted Aggregate days on the Market. With this system, once a home is listed the days start to count until the name on the title changes.

I do not like re-listing and will be happy the day this practice stops.  Not only does it provide an opportunity for realtors to lie, but it just seems wrong.  The Victoria Real Estate Board should adopt Aggregate days on the Market so buyers know the total days on the market and have access to accurate statistics.  It is one of the first things I check when I look at a property and it is one of many reasons you need to hire me to represent you when you buy your new home.
I do not like re-listing and will be happy the day this practice stops.  Not only does it provide an opportunity for realtors to lie, but it just seems wrong.  The Victoria Real Estate Board should adopt Aggregate days on the Market so buyers know the total days on the market and have access to accurate statistics.  It is one of the first things I check when I look at a property and it is one of many reasons you need to hire me to represent you when you buy your new home.

Wake UP BC real estate industry and stop fabricating stats!

If you have any questions about this or other real estate matters just drop me an email.

Cheers

Scott Simmons

 

Note:  These are just my personal thoughts as an independent contractor, not those of One Percent Realty Vancouver Island.  My intent is to stop this practice, not to “bring the real estate industry into disrepute.”  Debate and point of views are healthy and are a catalyst to change.

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