Withdrawing a Listing

Real Estate Attorneys Representing Buyers and Sellers in Boston

If a buyer works with a real estate agent who participates in a Multiple Service Listing (MLS), they can look at any property listed in the MLS, even if another real estate office listed it. However, there are some occasions on which a home is specified as "withdrawn." This does not mean that it has been sold, and sometimes you can still buy it. Whether you are someone selling your home who is interested in withdrawing a listing, or you are a buyer interested in a withdrawn listing, the Boston real estate lawyers at Pulgini & Norton may be able to provide legal guidance.

Withdrawing a Listing

There are Rules and Regulations when you are listing a house in an MLS. The participants and subscribers are expected to follow those rules to make sure that the data expressed on the MLS has integrity, allows brokers to cooperate, and creates situations whereby offers are made on homes. Both participants and subscribers are supposed to give and maintain accurate and complete information about homes for sale for brokers and their clients. When a listing is submitted, it is supposed to be complete in all required fields, including the class of the property, the listing price, its date of expiration, the compensation offered to other brokers, and more. Listing agents who do not keep current the information on the listing may be penalized.

The status “withdrawn” on the MLS means that a seller has removed a home from the MLS and decided that it is not for sale, at least for the moment. This is different from an "expiration" or "sold" or "under contract" status. The status on the MLS provides information to other brokers about whether a particular seller is already a client of another broker. "Withdrawn" means that a listing agreement is no longer in effect. Therefore, there will not be serious consequences if the seller signs a new listing agreement with a new broker.

When a buyer is interested in a home that is withdrawn, they should not assume that they are unable to buy it. There are numerous reasons why a seller may withdraw a home from the MLS. These may include wanting to switch realtors or reevaluate the price, finding a problem that needs repair in the home, a changed family circumstance, a decision to withdraw based on dissatisfaction with the offers received, a home that was priced too high and stayed unsold for too long at that price, or taking a break from showing the house.

A buyer who is interested in a withdrawn home may ask their agent to contact the prior listing agent or the homeowners to determine what the reason for the withdrawal is and whether there is any chance that you can make a persuasive offer. Sometimes a homeowner can be persuaded with a good offer, but it is important to contact them to see what their range of price and timing would be. It may be possible to make an offer and negotiate to buy the house. Sometimes a buyer has an advantage making an offer on a withdrawn listing when a seller is still interested in selling, since the home is off the market, and you are not competing with numerous other offers.

Explore Your Options with a Property Transaction Lawyer in Boston

Timing may make a big difference to your finding a home or selling your home on the MLS. It is important to stay flexible and consult legal counsel in connection with a real estate transaction. If you wish to withdraw a listing or learn more about a withdrawn listing, the Boston attorneys at Pulgini & Norton may be able to help you. Our firm handles real estate transactions in Lowell, Weymouth, and Andover, among other Massachusetts communities. For a consultation with a property transaction attorney, contact us online or call us at 781-843-2200.