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What Does Exclusive Mean?

When a property is listed with a Real Estate company you will notice that it is listed either “Exclusively” or with the “MLS®” system. In this resource guide I want to explain to you what an “Exclusive” listing means; more specifically, what listing “Exclusively” means when compared to an “MLS®” listing. When a property is marked as “Exclusive” this means that the listing is “Exclusive” to the company which has it listed. For example, just imagine that company ABC Realty lists 5 Rainbow Lane as an “Exclusive” listing. In the case of 5 Rainbow Lane, the only REALTORS® that are able to advertize, conduct showings/open houses, and ultimately sell this property are the REALTORS® employed by ABC Realty.

What Does An “Exclusive” Listing Mean For A Seller?

As REALTORS®, we have a couple of goals in mind when working with sellers- the obvious goal would be to sell your property in the least amount of time possible. However, another goal in selling your property would be to bring you the best possible offer (i.e. fair selling price, optimal closing date, etc.). In saying this, the more REALTORS® that you allow to advertize, show, and promote your property the more likely it will be that you will meet the previously mentioned goals. Conversely, when you choose to list “Exclusively” with a company, you limit the amount of REALTORS® working to sell your property; therefore, you limit the amount of exposure your property receives in the current marketplace.

So, Why Do Exclusive Listings Exist?

Before the “MLS®” system was implemented, “Exclusive” listings were the norm. Although the majority of REALTORS® and sellers recognize the benefits of listing “MLS®”, some sellers still request to list “Exclusively”. Some sellers might argue that the lower commission rates required to list “Exclusively” makes this option a more desirable one. But, from a REALTORS® perspective, listing a property as “Exclusive” comes at a high price for sellers. By listing “Exclusively” not only do sellers have less REALTOR® working to sell their property, it also means that sellers run the risk of having less “traffic” and consequently less interested buyers. If your property isn’t receiving the maximum amount of exposure, it may sit on the market longer- meaning more mortgage payments, a barrier inhibiting you from moving forward to another home, etc. Additionally, this scenario may lead to less offers and perhaps even less desirable offers.


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