How to List on MLS For Sale By Owner Without a Realtor (2022 Updates!)

How to List On MLS

✍️ Reviewer’s Note: The PropTech Reviews team and our researchers spend thousands of hours each week researching. We assess disruptive companies on 3 specific categories: most savings, best technology, and 5-star customer service. With the help of our comprehensive report, you’ll be able to easily list on MLS with the best For Sale By Owner MLS Listing Service.

How to List On MLS

The U.S. real estate market is hotter than it’s ever been. Home prices appreciated 18.5% in December 2021 compared to the year before. That means agent commissions touched record levels too.
 
In this hot market, if you follow some simple tips to sell your home by owner, you don’t really need to pay the hefty agent commissions. It’s your money. You keep it.

» In this guide, we’ll cover:

What is MLS?

MLS or the Multiple Listing System is a local database that real estate agents use to list a property for sale. Only licensed real estate agents have access to the MLS. There is no national MLS. There are 600+ local MLS’ in the US and many overlap in coverages. It is important that you list your property on the correct local MLS so your listing can be in front of the right buyer agents and buyers.
 
👉 Only licensed real estate agents have access to the MLS. Consumers cannot directly add their property to the MLS.

» SAVE: Houzeo is America’s #1 Flat Fee MLS service. Get listed NOW!

What are the Benefits of Listing on the MLS?

There are 5 key benefits of being on the MLS.

💸 All the Benefits of the MLS, But with No Listing Agent Commission: List on the Most Advanced MLS Platform Now!

How to list on MLS with a Full-service Realtor

Hiring a full-service agent is one of the most common ways to list on the MLS. A Realtor can get your home on the MLS and ensure that your listing gets a lot of attention from buyers and buyer agents in your area.
 
It can be difficult to sell a home if you’ve never done it before. A Realtor brings expertise that you don’t have. However, full-service agents charge a hefty commission of about 2.5% to 3%. In addition, you have to pay 3% of your sale price to the buyer’s agent upon selling a home.

⚠️ Editor’s Take: We do not recommend you list with a full-service Realtor and pay a listing agent commission. High-tech home selling websites like Houzeo.com will help you sell your home for a small flat fee and save you thousands in commissions!

» SAVESave the entire Listing Agent Commission by letting our technology help you sell your home yourself!

How to List on the MLS By Owner Without a Realtor?

There is no way to list on the MLS without using an agent. But with a Flat Fee MLS listing, you only pay a small fee to get listed on the MLS instead of paying a full listing agent commission. A Flat-Fee MLS listing is the fastest way to get listed on the MLS and hit the market.

With high-tech services like Houzeo, you are instantly assigned the right paperwork for your local MLS and your property type. That gets you listed way faster than even working with a traditional full-service realtor. And you pay no listing agent commission, saving you thousands!

What is a Flat Fee MLS Listing?

After the U.S. Department of Justice legalized Flat-Fee MLS in 2005, several companies sprung up to help home sellers list their homes on the MLS for a flat fee instead of charging the traditional 3% to 6% commission.
 
These listings are typically called “entry-only” listings or Flat Fee MLS listings. The broker only helps the seller get listed on the MLS. If you need additional help or services, the brokers provide you with those for a small additional fee instead of a commission. Some sellers want to avoid paying a commission because they are confident in navigating the real estate market.

To list on MLS by the owner, you’ll need a brokerage that offers à la carte services. Some sellers want to avoid paying a commission because they are confident in navigating the real estate market.

Getting on the MLS is easy, and can be done in 4 steps.

How Much Does It Cost To List On MLS?

It depends on whether you’re working with a full-service or a flat-fee MLS service like Houzeo.
 
A full-service agent generally charges you around 2%-3% of the selling price as the listing agent commission.
 
On the other hand, you can potentially save a lot to list on MLS using a Flat Fee MLS listing service. There are 3 types of costs associated with a Flat Fee MLS listing:

  1. Upfront Flat Fee: This is what you’ll pay to get on the MLS. Typically the upfront fee is between $300 to $500.
  2. Fees at Closing: Most flat fee MLS services will not charge any additional fee unless you are in a minimum service state.
  3. Hidden Charges: Many unscrupulous brokers will reel you in with a $99 listing. Buyer beware – that’s just the start. You’ll be paying $500+ in hidden fees. A $50 ⦁ yard sign will be sold you to for $135. Some brokers will charge you hidden fees at closing, but you’ll only find out about these when you’re ready to close. That’s way too late to do anything about it.

» SAVE: Houzeo discloses all its fees upfront on the Flat Fee MLS Pricing page

What Is The Best Flat Fee MLS Listing Service?

🏆 BEST OVERALL
  • Listing Fee: $199 to $999
  • Available nationwide
  • Listings Featured on Houzeo App

Undoubtedly, Houzeo is the best Flat Fee MLS listing service as they’re always transparent on their pricing page, provide maximum exposure, reach local agents, provide quick listings and changes and syndicate these listings to hundreds of other websites to reach potential buyers.

Houzeo saves you the listing agent commission. In addition, Houzeo’s superb technology gives you access to tools only real estate agents have. You can counter an offer online, request highest & best, and even manage your showings. If you ever need help, Houzeo gives you 5-star customer service – via chat, email, and phone.

Finally, Houzeo discloses all its fees upfront.

»SAVE: Start your free listing on Houzeo.com today!

Pros

  • No hidden fees
  • Maximum MLS exposure via the MLS – Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, Realtor.com, and 100s of other sites
  • 100% automated process on the web and the new Houzeo mobile app
  • Fast listing and listing changes
  • Online Showings Management – via the web and the Houzeo mobile app
  • Online offers Management- counter an offer or request highest & best yourself!
  • Risk-free. Cancel anytime

Houzeo has a 4.9 out of 5 rating (1,637 total reviews) on popular review sites like Google Reviews and Trustpilot

Houzeo is available nationwide.

How To List On MLS For Free?

If you’re willing to list on MLS and gain maximum exposure for your property, then it’s possible without an agent but it’s never going to be free.
 
You can prefer to list online on for sale by owner websites that provide nationwide exposure for free but they’ll be not as efficient as MLS listings.
 
Houzeo offers extremely low prices to list on MLS, starting from $199 to $999. Their basic package allows you to list on MLS with 6 photos and 3 month listing period. Whereas, their platinum package includes a max number of photos, virtual tours, pricing assistance, contract Review, and unlimited term and changes.

How Long Does It take to list a House On MLS?

With most Flat Fee MLS services, the order is forwarded to your local broker, the broker sends you the paperwork, and once you complete the paperwork it takes an additional 2 business days to make your listing live.
 
Houzeo instantly assigns you the right paperwork for your property. And it is all digital. Once you are done with the digital documents, your listing will be live typically within 1 business day – sometimes in just a few hours!

⚡ LIGHTNING FASTNo other Flat Fee MLS service is as fast and responsive as Houzeo! Start your FREE listing NOW!

Your contact information will generally be in the “Private Remarks” section of the listing for the buyer’s agent to reach out to set up showings, negotiations or for any additional information.

How Does a Flat Fee MLS Listing Save You Money?

Compared to hiring a full-service real estate agent and paying 2.5% to 3% in listing agent commission, Flat Fee MLS is a lot less expensive. There is just a small flat fee for the MLS listing. There will be a commission to pay only if a buyer is represented by an agent which means you get the entire amount of your total sale if you find a buyer who does not have an agent. Keep in mind though that most buyers are represented by an agent, and to get top dollar for your property offering a competitive commission to a buyer’s agent is wise.

What are the Steps to List on MLS via Houzeo.com?

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to list your home on Houzeo!

Alternative to Listing on the MLS By Owner

Sell your home For Sale By Owner without the MLS

If you want to list your property for sale by owner online, then you need to find a website that accepts FSBO listings and create an account.

Nowadays, listing on MLS is not the only way to gain exposure for your property. There are numerous websites that act as nationwide real estate portals that combine MLS and Non-MLS listings.

For Instance, Zillow, Redfin, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace and more. These websites are popular in the United States and hold potential exposure for free.

More importantly, review the terms and generate your listing using the photos and description.

Frequently Asked Questions on How to List on MLS By Owner

What is MLS?

Multiple Listing Service or MLS is a property listing database used by licensed real estate agents and brokers to list their sellers’ homes and properties. Every listing is automatically posted to hundreds of real estate websites, including the major ones like Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, and Realtor.com

Is Flat Fee MLS Legal?

Flat Fee MLS is legal all over the United States. In fact, the US Department of Justice just updated their bulletin highlighting the benefits of Flat Fee MLS for For Sale By Owner home sellers.

Are Flat Fee Realtors Good?

Some home sellers assume that since flat-fee realtors are working for lower fees they might not provide you with good services but there are thousands of home sellers who’ve already tried these flat-fee realtors and they have saved thousands of dollar with the best services!

Can I List on the MLS without an Agent?

Yes, you can list your home on the MLS with a Flat Fee MLS listing service like Houzeo, eliminating the listing agent, and their 3% commission right away!

What is a Flat Fee MLS Listing?

Flat Fee MLS Listing (Multiple Listing Service) provides home sellers access to the MLS for a small flat fee – $79 to $495 on Houzeo – instead of paying a 3% listing agent commission.

When you choose a Flat Fee MLS listing, you are in full control of your home sale and can avoid paying up to all of the 6% standard real estate commission.

How Can I List My House Using The Flat Fee MLS Listing?

It’s simple! List your home on Houzeo.com, purchase a Flat Fee MLS listing plan, and fill out all the needed documents that will be automatically assigned to you. 60 minutes could save you $20,000 in real estate agent commissions! Our plans are designed to serve a specific type of customer.

For land, feel free to purchase the BRONZE plan. We recommend the SILVER plan for the sophisticated seller. And the GOLD gives you everything you need to make things easier for novice sellers!

Can I Request to Add Open Houses Easily?

Our IntelliList Listing Management system makes requesting open houses to be added a breeze! Watch this video on how to request listing changes, including open houses

How Much Money Can I Actually Save?

You can save up to 100% of the real estate commissions! With the Flat Fee MLS listing on Houzeo, you save the 3% listing agent commission. You’re obligated to pay the buyer’s agent the commission you offered if they’re represented by an agent, but if you procure a buyer with no agent involved, you can save even that!

What Things Does a Seller Have to Do to Sell Their Property?

You’ll essentially be serving as your own agent, so your responsibilities include setting up the yard sign, scheduling showings, filing paperwork, pricing your property, etc. Houzeo does make it a little easier though – and you save $$$ in the process!

Do I Need to Sign a Contract to List My Home?

Yes, but these contracts for Flat Fee MLS listings are generally “entry-only”. That means they’re limited to the agent entering your listing into the MLS. And they can be canceled/terminated anytime with no penalty!

Does a real estate agent license give you access to MLS?

Yes! Only licensed real estate agents and brokers have access to their local MLS.

Why is a multiple listing service important when selling a house?

There are 600+ local MLS’ in the US and many overlap in coverages. It is important that you list your property on the correct local MLS so your listing can be in front of the right buyer agents and buyers.

How much is it to list my house on MLS?

Houzeo offers extremely low prices to list on MLS, starting from $199 to $999. Their basic package allows you to list on MLS with 6 photos and 3 month listing period. Whereas, their platinum package includes a max number of photos, virtual tours, pricing assistance, contract Review, and unlimited term and changes.

What is the best MLS listing site?

Undoubtedly, Houzeo is the best Flat Fee MLS listing service as they’re always transparent on their pricing page, provide maximum exposure, reach local agents, provide quick listings and changes and syndicate these listings to hundreds of other websites to reach potential buyers.

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