It’s January 5th and there are only 33 single family homes listed for sale on MLSListings.com in Los Altos. Most of these homes have been on the market for months and are likely to be overpriced. Even though inventory is low, good buys can be made in today’s real estate market!
First off, all is not as it appears. Many listings that were pulled off the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) in November and December are still available for sale. These properties are known in the industry as “pocket” listings. Pocket listings may be a good resource for buyers who can make a move quickly.
A more exciting group of pocket listings are properties that are being prepared for the market. Once the listing contract is signed, a listing agent may network with other local agents to get the word out about the new listing. If a buyer’s agent and buyer are privy to these listings, it can lead to a good buy.
Because many agents have been holding off putting homes on the market during the holidays, the beginning of each calender year is a great time for those looking for pocket listing opportunities.
For example, I am aware of two new listings (among others) that are not on the MLS (yet) and could be good values to a potential first time home buyer in Los Altos. Note: I am not the listing agent of either of these properties and since they are not “public knowledge,” I won’t disclose the property’s addresses or the name(s) of the listing agent(s) here.
The first is a 3+ bedroom, 2 bath home on a nice south Los Altos lot (Cupertino schools). The list price is around 1.2 million.
The second home is a 3 bedroom, 1 bath home within the Oak Elementary School boundaries. The list price is around 1.15 million.
Either of these might be able to be purchased today, before they hit the open market. However, a buyer must have their financing in place and be fully committed to the purchase.
Buyers need to be aware that most of the statistics that Realtors use comes from our local MLS. The MLS data does not include information on a small but valuable source of inventory – pocket listings.
As a buyer, doesn’t it make sense to have knowledge of these pocket listings? The best way to get access is to align yourself with a knowledgeable local real estate professional.