How do I choose a flat-fee MLS listing service (FSBO)?

blog_post_houseI recently listed my Massachusetts home on MLS, but I’m not using a real estate agent to sell my property. Since I wanted to list on MLS without a realtor, my biggest question was "What MLS listing service should I use?" Doing a listing For Sale By Owner (FSBO), I want a flat-fee MLS listing service that has a good online presence as well as a history of quality person-to-person customer support. It seems like none of the flat fee MLS listing services have any 3rd party reviews online.

There also seems to be a general divide between key offerings – companies that offer barebones, no feature service for under $200, and other companies that offer a variety of packages and features starting at $300. The sub-$200 packages seem extremely risky and could wind up being useless if you enter your listing information wrong. The $300 and up packages tend to allow you to make updates at no or low extra cost, and include features like including your open house listing along with your for sale listing on MLS. These are important considerations when doing For Sale By Owner.

Long story short, I ended up using buyself.com and was very pleased with them. Read below for my details of my process in searching for a service provider.

Below I will briefly discuss some of the other companies that I also researched. You can find a list of URLs to more reviews for flat fee MLS services here: http://www.flatfeereviews.com/index.php?topic=2.0.


I was extremely tempted to use bloomkey.com – I even starting going through the checkout process with their MLS package. Their site seems to offer all the right features and in a timely manner, too. However, I could not find any real reviews of the company online (other than what the website posts on its own pages). Additionally, their Alexa web traffic ranking was pretty bad at 1,948,035 (with a rank of 1 being the best). Although these Alexa rankings often can be misleading, they are still usually a good indicator of how mainstream a company is. Bloomkey’s ranking of nearly 2 million means that they get about as much web traffic as a typical personal blog does, and probably means that the company has only a couple of people working for it.

I also found other sites like flatfeemls.com and flatfeelisting.com, which were my next 2 choices since I was able to find 1 or 2 user reviews for them (although that’s still not great). My hesitation with these companies was that there was never any information regarding what forms you need to fill out (especially with flatfeemls.com), or extremely slow process for getting the paperwork, submitting it, and getting the listing to be active. At least flatfeelisting.com has an A+ rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

The flat fee service getmoreoffers.com has a lot more reviews online, all of them positive. However, getmoreoffers.com is primarily only for listing in Florida, even though they offer their services for all states. For me this uncovered another consideration that I needed to make – does the offered service change depending on which state you live in? Indeed it does. For example, if you want to list your open house details on your local MLS, then you might be out of luck with some of these services that are based in other states. This is the case with realmartrealty.com (also an A+ BBB rating, but based in New Jersey).

When I was trying to find online reviews for one of the above companies, I actually found a YouTube video for a different company – buyself.com (apparently operated by parent website flatfeemlslisting.com, but not to be confused with the similarly named flatfeelisting.com that I previously described). They also have an A+ rating on BBB. This seems to be the company with the longest history that I could find (they have been offering this service since 1998), best customer service responsiveness, supports same-day rush listing if necessary, has a few online user reviews (all positive) and includes a lockbox. click to go to it) and for sale sign as part of their "Standard Package". This immediately became my favorite choice. However, I noticed that they had different versions of their website, like having open house options available in Tennessee (even though they are based in Minnesota… ?) For my state of Massachusetts, the web site gave no indications of being able to schedule my open house as part of the MLS listing. I called the number on their site (several times, they starting answering their phone after 10:30am EDT) to ask about this – and apparently they don’t list an open house option as a separate add-on because it already comes for free with their "Standard Package". I called them several times, each time they picked up the phone immediately.

I decided to go with buyself.com. I liked that I was able to get them on the phone, receive more options for a lower price ($299), get same-day rush processing (no extra cost), and have a company with a long history and good BBB rating. Sure enough, I ordered their package at 10:45am (EDT), and by 6:00pm the same day I had an active MLS listing and open house scheduled for the upcoming weekend. After ordering, they contact an MLS entry-only agent local to my area to handle the listing, and this person was also always immediately available on the phone without being placed on hold (and I called them about 10 times throughout the day, too!) The lockbox they sent me is pictured here, it is the kind you see at a lot of homes and was good quality (click to go to it). The “for sale” sign was not very professional looking, I would suggest getting a beefier, metal sign at your local hardware store.

I’ve only covered these companies briefly. You can find a list of URLs to more in-depth reviews for flat fee MLS services here: http://www.flatfeereviews.com/index.php?topic=2.0

If you have more information about any of these companies, any other companies, or have any other questions or comments about this topic, please add to the forum at www.flatfeereviews.com and we’ll try to get more information available to everyone!

80 thoughts on “How do I choose a flat-fee MLS listing service (FSBO)?”

  1. Wondering if you have an recommendations for a flat fee service in California or any more current info?
    Thanks

  2. Has anyone used MLS4owners.com flat fee service? I’m in Yakima, WA and have talked with one who was happy with them. Please let me know your recommendations. I’ve read all that’s posted here and it looks as though nomoreagent.com is a good one? Thanks.

  3. I had thought that you could have your contact info on realtor.com, but it looks like when a buyer requests more info the buyer is referred to a local agent, who can try to sell them other homes also.

  4. We do flat fee MLS listings in California for $95, no hidden fees or gimmicks: https://homecoin.com/flat-fee-mls

    We have all five star reviews on Yelp and Zillow. We also have an Alexa ranking of ~140k, which is higher than any other flat fee site. Check us out!

    https://www.yelp.com/biz/homecoin-san-diego-2
    https://www.zillow.com/profile/homecoin/#reviews
    https://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/homecoin.com#trafficstats

    And if you are in another state and want tips on what to look for in a flat fee listing, read our blog post here: https://homecoin.com/blog/post/flat-fee-mls-listing-service-recommendations

    CalBRE #01888948 | Broker

  5. This appears to be an old article. If you are interested in using a flat fee service, use ASSIST 2 SELL, it’s the only company that provides FULL all inclusive service from beginning (staging and photography) to the closing table, from marketing to negotiations and from the yard sign to online and MLS advertising. All for one flat fee paid at closing. There are hundreds of offices in the USA and Canada or visit http://www.Assist2Sell.com

  6. Hey Mike! Thank you for sharing your experience using Flat Fee MLS providers. National FSBO platforms are a good option in that scenario, as they provide you Flat Fee services country-wide, as well as other quality services for that amount. For example, Houzeo.com, a recently launched FSBO site, gets you an accurate pricing report, automatically gathers important disclosures relevant to your property address, as well as connects you with local agents. Not only that, these agents have associated reviews based on their previous transaction performance, which helps you choose one based on their ratings and your preference in services.
    Finally, the prices offered for packages are modest, and only a small fraction of what you would pay if you were to use an agent.
    Hope this helps in your next home-selling transaction!

  7. Flat Fee can actually be really helpful if you price your home right, showcase it well and offer a competitive buyer’s agent. If you’re using these services through a platform, then unlimited changes might be available, but generally MLS providers allow 10 changes only (for free, after that they charge some fee for changes). Aside from that, platforms themselves can provide quite a few services for the flat package fee, making FSBO quite simple, accessible and lucrative!

    Niki from Houzeo | Offering Flat Fee MLS in North Carolina at https://www.houzeo.com/flat-fee-mls/north-carolina

  8. flatfeereviews.com appears to be down. Is the content available somewhere else? I found that info very helpful! Thanks.

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