If you’re selling your house in California, you need to list it on the MLS. The MLS is the most powerful tool to sell and buy homes in California.
Only real estate agents have access to the MLS. But as a home seller, you don’t have to pay thousands in listing commission to an agent to list and sell your home. There are 4 options how you can list on MLS:
- List Yourself via a FSBO Website (Most Recommended): Some of the best FSBO sites will let you list and sell your home yourself. And in doing so, you’ll save thousands in commission!
- List on a Flat Fee MLS Service: A Flat Fee MLS service will get you on the MLS for a flat fee, with no listing commission.
- List with a Discount Broker: Discount Brokers charge anywhere from 0.5% to 2% in commission. Here’s our ranking of America’s best discount real estate brokers.
- List with a Traditional Agent (Least Recommended): A traditional real estate agent will charge you a full 2.5% to 3% commission. Plus they can be old school, with manual and inefficient processes.
Home prices in California are rising but are expected to reduce further as the year progresses. So, if you want to sell your house in California, now is the time!
MLS is Key for Sellers 💯
- Most homes in the California sell via the MLS. The MLS gives you unparalleled exposure to both buyer agents and buyers.
- Homes on MLS sold for 17% more than non-MLS listed homes, according to a Bright MLS study. MLS homes also sold faster.
- MLS listings get syndicated to Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, Redfin, and hundreds of other websites giving your property critical exposure.
- There are 600+ MLS’ in the U.S. It is critical you list on your local MLS. This ensures your listing is viewable to your local buyer agents.
What is the MLS in Real Estate?
Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a database that enables real estate agents and brokers to list and view homes for sale. An MLS listing includes all the information about your property, such as its price, description, and photos.
The homes listed on MLS are syndicated to various online real estate websites. This amplifies the exposure your property gets.
Only licensed real estate agents have access to the MLS. Consequently, only real estate agents can create MLS listings.
» List with Houzeo in California: List on MLS by owner with Houzeo.com without a real estate agent license.
Benefits of Listing a Home on MLS
Listed below are some of the benefits of listing on the MLS in California:
- Get Maximum Exposure: When you list on MLS, your listing gets syndicated to hundreds of real estate websites such as Zillow, Trulia, Redfin, and Realtor.com. This boosts your property’s visibility to potential buyers.
- Market to Buyer Agents: According to NAR, 86% of home buyers purchased their homes through a buyer agent last year. Listing on MLS is the most effective way to market your property to potential buyers.
- Incentivize the Buyer Agent: As mentioned above, buyer agents are involved in most real estate transactions. The MLS allows you to incentivize buyer agents with a competitive commission.
- You Can Sell Faster: Homes listed on MLS are sold 17% faster than those that were not listed on MLS.
What is a Flat Fee MLS listing?
A flat fee MLS listing service will list your house on the California MLS at a flat rate. Unlike hiring RE agents, you can skip paying a hefty sum as a commission with a flat fee MLS service.
There are two types of flat fee services:
- MLS Entry-Only Services: They only list your home on California MLS for you. Some might also syndicate it to other websites like Zillow and Trulia.
- MLS Packages: They provide additional services, besides listing on the MLS, like photography, yard signs, and showings.
Rankings: 5 Best Flat Fee MLS Services to List on MLS Yourself in California:
|Flat Fee MLS Service||Price||Additional Fees||100% Online||5-Star Reviews||Mobile App|
|2. Congress Realty||$299||$50-$800||❌||❌||❌|
|4. FSBO||$99-$399||High Cost Add Ons||❌||❌||❌|
|5. Brian Dombroski||$299-$999||None||❌||❌||❌|
Reviews: 5 Best Flat Fee MLS Companies in California
Houzeo offers 4 comprehensive Flat Fee MLS listing plans.
- Bronze – $349+: In this basic plan, you get a 6-month listing term with 24 photos. You get unlimited listing changes and open houses.
- Silver – $199+: In the silver plan, you can list 24 photos for 6 months. You also get a yard sign and unlimited listing changes.
- Gold – $299+: Gold is Houzeo’s signature MLS package with tech features like Houzeo Showings, Houzeo Offers, and DigiTransact.
- Platinum – $179+: This is the ultimate flat fee plan with a 1-year listing term and virtual full-service from a licensed broker.
👉 Houzeo Reviews? Find out why Houzeo is America’s #1 MLS listing service!
Houzeo has the best tech available for a Flat Fee MLS platform. Check out Houzeo Reviews.
- Maximum Savings: With Houzeo you save at least 3% on listing agent commission. All fees are disclosed upfront, so there are no Houzeo hidden fees.
- Advanced Tech: Houzeo’s tech is stellar. You get an intuitive seller’s dashboard, free mobile app, and 100% online paperwork.
- Maximum Exposure: Your home is listed on 100+ real estate websites like Zillow and Trulia. This ensures maximum eyeballs on your property.
- Nationwide Coverage: Houzeo covers 47 states and DC.
👉 Houzeo Customer Reviews: Houzeo is rated “Excellent” with a 4.9 out of 5-star rating by 5,000+ home sellers on Google reviews and Trustpilot.
In our research, we found no major red flags with Houzeo. Customers have consistently given positive reviews about their experience.
👉 Houzeo Complaints: Find out what sellers said about Houzeo!
2. Congress Realty
Congress Realty Offers 3 Flat Fee MLS packages and one full-service Package.
- Basic Package – $299: Includes a listing term of 6 months, 4 photos and state forms & disclosures, and up to 5 free listing changes.
- Plus Package – $399: Includes the same services as the basic package with 10 free listing changes. In addition, automated phone leads are forwarded to you.
- Premium Package – $499: Includes all services of the Plus Package with unlimited free listing changes, and open house postings.
- Full-Service Package – $399+0.5% Commission: This Package comes with the assistance of an agent to help you with negotiations, contract review, and closing. They charge 0.5% at closing.
Congress Realty is an excellent Flat Fee MLS option for sellers looking to sell their homes fast.
- Very Experienced & Highly Rated Broker: Jared Andrew English is one of the most capable brokers in the business. Whether you are buying or selling a home, Andrew provides excellent representation.
- Excellent Customer Service: Congress Realty’s Andrew and his team are among the fastest and most accessible brokers in the industry.
👉 Jared English Congress Realty: Jared English and Congress Realty have an “Excellent” of 4.9 stars out of 5 from 155 Houzeo home sellers. Check out his profile on Houzeo’s vendor page!
In our research, we found no red flags with Congress Realty. The broker community holds Jared Andrew English in high regard.
However, Congress Realty boasts several upgrades. These can pile up quickly at the time of closing!
We recommend the Premium Package as the best value for your money. You get unlimited changes with the Premium package. The cheaper plan requires you to purchase upgrades separately.
Beycome offers 3 FSBO packages. Prices may vary state-wise.
- Basic Package – $99: This is a basic listing service for experienced sellers. You get services like a local MLS listing, unlimited updates, an open house scheduler, etc.
- Enhanced Package – $399: This plan includes everything from the basic package plus added features like professional photography, promotional items, yard signs, etc.
- Concierge Service – $599+ 1%: This plan is essentially a full-service virtual package. Services include negotiation and paperwork assistance and full marketing support.
👑 The Queen’s Take: Beycome has a user-friendly interface and cost-saving potential. However, their customer reviews paint a mixed picture, with both positive and negative experiences.
👉 Beycome Pros and Cons: Beycome’s pros and cons unveiled!
Beycome has a few drawbacks that you should be aware of.
- Expensive Add-Ons: A $99 listing is almost always too good to be true. Many costs add up during the closing stage which can completely derail a successful sale.
- Spam: Beycome is known to spam customers to upsell their Title service.
- Limited Coverage: Beycome does not offer nationwide coverage. Currently, Beycome is available only in 10 states.
FSBO.com offers 2 packages for FSBO home sellers.
- Basic Package – $99.95: This is a basic plan where your property is listed on FSBO.com and Redfin for 6 months. You do not get MLS listing in this plan.
- MLS Package – $399.95: The package includes an MLS listing term of 6 months with up to 20 photos.
- Classic FSBO.com Yard Sign w/ Stand: $60
- Directional Arrow – For Sale By Owner: $12
- Open House Directional Arrow: $12
- Sign Riders: $12
👑 The Queen’s Take: FSBO.com offers For Sale By Owner services, saving you thousands on hefty commissions. However, they do not list you on the MLS directly. Instead, they connect you with a broker at the state level.
👉 Pros and Cons of FSBO.com: Read the benefits and drawbacks of listing with FSBO.com.
FSBO.com can be useful for experienced home sellers.
- Multiple Listing Categories: You get to highlight your listing in specific sections dedicated to foreclosure, pre-foreclosure, tax lien, or bankruptcy.
- User‑Friendly Interface: FSBO.com has a simple website that is easy to navigate. It has a basic interface that enables you to create your listing by adding relevant information.
In our research, we found some drawbacks of FSBO.com.
- Not 100% Online: FSBO.com lacks automation features. You have to manage your listings on your own.
- No DIY Resources: FSBO.com does not provide any resources to enhance your listing experience.
- Unreliable Broker Quality: FSBO.com has mixed reviews online saying it has good services in some places only.
- Extra Charges for Listing Photos: If you want to add more than 20 photos to your listing you have to pay extra fees of $50 to $60.
- Expensive à La Carte Services: For add-on services like e-lockbox rental and showing service you have to pay $150 and $75 respectively. These services are costly compared to other Flat-fee MLS service providers.
FSBO.com has no reviews from credible sources.
👉 FSBO.com Reviews: Read to know more about FSBO.com
5. Brian Dombroski
Dombroski Real Estate offers 3 Flat Fee plans.
- Bronze Plan – $299: This is a basic listing plan that includes 15 photos, a 6-month listing term, and support via email.
- Silver Plan – $399: This is a popular plan with home sellers. You get contracts, forms, disclosure documents, and property flyers in addition to the services of the Bronze Plan.
- Gold Plan – $999 + $150: The listing term is 12 months with 35 photos. Plus phone and priority email assistance and sales contract review. However, you are charged a $150 admin closing fee to remove your property from the MLS.
- Full-Service Plan: Dombroski Real Estate offers a full-service plan priced at $699 + 0.75% fee at closing. A broker will guide you through the entire transaction.
Dombroski Real Estate’s best asset is its Broker, Brian Dombroski!
- Veteran Broker: Brian has over a decade of experience in Flat Fee service. He understands the local market well and is able to provide clear guidance to his sellers.
- Quick Response: Brian’s team is known for their quick response to customer queries. This ensures a quick list-to-close process.
👉 Brian Dombroski Reviews: Brian is one of the top realtors in California. Check out his profile on Houzeo’s vendor page!
In our research, we found no glaring drawbacks with Dombroski Real Estate.
Brian is a fantastic broker and knows his way around the CA market. However, the bronze and silver plans may not work for first-time FSBO sellers. Opt for the full-service plan instead.
💡 Cheapest Ways to List on MLS: Paying 3% of the purchase price as real estate commission can become an unwelcomed expense if you are an experienced seller. We recommend opting for a Flat Fee MLS Package for listing For Sale By Owner on MLS.
How to List Your House on MLS in California?
You can list your house on California MLS using several methods, using a full service realtor or a Flat Fee MLS service. However, the steps to listing on the MLS are the same.
Here we can look through the basic steps of “how to list on the MLS”.
- Do Your Research: There are several ways to access the MLS, hiring a real estate agent is just one of them. You should know all your options before proceeding.
- Find What Suits You Best: Most companies offer a range of Flat Fee MLS listing packages, differing in features according to the seller’s experience, the listing term, and MLS coverage.
- Get Professional Photographs: 87% of buyers rely on photographs to make a decision. Accordingly, getting professionally clicked photos of your house can help you sell your house faster.
- Create a Listing: While creating a listing for your local MLS, go with a catchy headline, comprehensive description, and attractive photographs.
- Get listed on MLS: After finalizing these all prospects, forward the same to the listing agent and get your property listed on the MLS.
How Much Does it Cost to List on MLS in California
The cost of listing on the California MLS depends on the method you use. You can pick a full service agent or a flat fee MLS service.
A full service agent will require you to pay a seller agent commission of 2-3%. A flat fee MLS service will get you listed at a flat rate.
However, beware of hidden charges and fees at closing. Some sites may not be upfront about these costs.
Alternatives to Listing on MLS By Owner in California
There are alternative ways to List on the MLS By Owner, and they are as follows.
- Going Completely FSBO: ‘For Sale By Owner’ refers to selling real estate without the assistance of a real estate agent or broker. Many For Sale By Owner MLS listing services like Houzeo, Zillow, Craigslist, and ForSaleByOwner.com offer free listings on their respective websites.
- Discount Real Estate Brokers: A discount real estate broker offers all the services that a traditional real estate agent does for a fraction of the cost. They typically sell your house for a 1% commission compared to the 2.5% to 3% charged by a traditional real estate agent charges.
» Creative Ways to Market an FSBO House: Find out 18 Creative Ways to Market a House For Sale By Owner Homes.
How to List on MLS via Houzeo.com in California?
List your home on MLS via Houzeo.com in 4 simple steps!
- Start Your FREE Listing: On your browser, go to Houzeo.com and click on “Start Free Listing” at the top right corner.
- Add Information About the Property & Photos: Register, and on your Houzeo dashboard click “Sell a Property“. Provide your property information, select a buyer agent commission, and upload photos.
- Choose a Listing Plan: Houzeo offers 4 MLS listing packages. We recommend the GOLD package as it will give you access to all of Houzeo’s technologically advanced features, like listing management, scheduling showings, and offer and lead management.
- Complete the Listing Documents: Listing docs will be automatically assigned to you based on your listing agent, property type, and local MLS. Completing the listing paperwork will take about 20 to 30 minutes.
If everything is in order, your listing will be live on your local MLS within 24-48 hours!
Listing in the MLS in California is a great way to boost the sale of your property. However, it can be expensive as access to MLS is restricted to real estate agents.
Even if you are new to selling, listing on MLS for sale by owner with a Flat Fee MLS broker like Houzeo can gain you profit.
» Houzeo Reviews: Check out what FSBO sellers have to say about listing with Houzeo.com
Frequently Asked Questions about Listing on MLS
1. Is Flat Fee MLS legal in California?
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.
2. Are Flat Fee Realtors good in California?
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!
3. Can I request to add open houses easily?
Our IntelliList Listing Management system makes requesting open houses to be added a breeze!
4. 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!
» Houzeo Hidden Fees: Read further to know how much more you can save!
5. How to sell your house in 2023?
If you want to sell your home in 2023, you must follow these tips:
1. List on MLS.
2. Offer a competitive buyer's agent commission.
3. Set a competitive pricing for your house.
4. Use professional photography.
» List on America’s #1 FSBO Site and save thousands of commission.
6. Do I need to sign a contract to list my home in California?
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!
7. Can you list rentals on the MLS in California?
Yes, you can list rentals on the MLS. Listing rentals on the MLS can boost your visibility and give you a competitive edge. Accordingly, you can close the rental transaction faster.
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