A pocket listing is a selling agent’s dream. The idea that they can sell a home without having to spend a dime on marketing, not having to deal with an open house and in today’s market in El Segundo walking away with a cool $40-60K in commission.
Here in El Segundo there are a lot of off-market deals. As I mentioned the main agents in town have the all the info. Who’s ready to buy and who’s ready to sell. If they can make a match they win.
It’s hard to find out until it’s too late unless you are working within the cabal of local real estate agents but often the agent likes to throw up a sold sign as advertisement after the fact. To me the sold sign also tells prospective buyers, “If I’m your agent I have access to deals you don’t even know about”. When I was actively searching for a home to buy I analyzed the sales data for the past couple years. I was bothered when some of the data was not complete. Why wasn’t there an original list price? Why wasn’t there a realtor associated with the sale? Turns out that was a red flag and that all of those deals indicated off market transactions. I estimate that 10-15% of sales in El Segundo happen off market.
I came across one of Bill Ruane’s sold signs at 640 Sierra St. the other day and wondered why I didn’t remember that home. Records show it sold 4/4/17 (for $518/sqft) and two month’s later Bill is still using it as free advertisement. (Ever notice how Bill has for-sale sign at homes and apartments strategically placed at every entrance to El Segundo???) DO NOT DISTURB OCCUPANTS!
So if you want to buy into this town and the obscene real estate prices you pay the piper and go with one of the members of the cabal.