How to get your real estate listing removed from the internet



Wondering how to get a real estate ad off the Internet? Whether you’re a seller who took your home off the market or a buyer who just closed, responding to inquiries from buyers who still see your home online is a drag when it’s no longer for sale.

So what can you do to get a house off the list? And how long does it really take? Let us shed some light on how real estate listings go up and down.

Who can delete a real estate ad?

For starters, how are real estate listings displayed online for everyone to see, anyway? When a seller decides to list their home through a real estate agent, that agent gathers the necessary information and photos and loads them into a large, interconnected database called a Multiple Listing Service, or MLS. From there, the list is used to feed online platforms like realtor.com.


Only licensed agents and brokers who pay to join MLS have access to the full feed. As such, they are the only ones who can post real estate there or remove those ads.

This means for home buyers and sellers that you can’t just call MLS and have the service remove a home from the site.

In addition, “door-to-door sellers are not allowed to make any changes because technically the information and photos become the property of the MLS in which they are originally listed,” states Lynne Freda, a Freda Realty realtor, in Callicoon, NY.


How to temporarily remove a real estate ad

Sellers are constantly pulling their homes off the market, according to Beth bernitt, a Century 21 Real Estate agent in Bethel, NY.

Sometimes it’s because they’ve changed their mind and don’t want to sell their house anymore. But just as often, something personal arises that causes a salesperson to decide to delay the sale for a few weeks. For example, you may decide to perform repairs or upgrades to get a higher price.

It’s what agents call a “temporary off-market,” Bernitt says. If you think you want to remove your listing for a while, just let your listing agent know.

“Unsubscribing is just a click of a button,” says Bernitt. And if you want to relist, it’s just another click of a button.

However, once your home isn’t listed on MLS, that doesn’t mean it will instantly be reflected from afar. Various websites may have delays before this change takes effect. For some sites this can take as little as 15 minutes (which happens on realtor.com), while other sites can take days or even weeks.

Removed ad vs expired ad: what’s the difference?

While a listing agent may deliberately remove an ad from MLS, another way that real estate listings disappear from websites is when they expire. This is when your commitment to working with a certain agent ends and you go your separate ways (that is, unless you renew your real estate contract).

When you sign a contract with an agent to sell your home, there is an expiration date, usually three to six months away. Listing agents often enter the expiration date of their contract directly into the list in the database. After all, they’re paying MLS dues to get this list live, so they won’t want it to stick around unless they’re still working with you! So, when this date has passed, your ad should automatically disappear from the Internet.

If you decide to stop working with an agent before the end of your contract, you can notify the agent, who will withdraw your registration before it expires.

House just sold? How to remove it from MLS

Once you close a house and walk away with a new set of keys in your palm, your house is off the market. But that doesn’t mean it’s off the Internet! The listings (and all those wonderful photos of your home) don’t go offline until the listing is closed by the listing agent, says Freda.

“Most MLS systems require the seller’s agent to close homes sold within 24 hours of the sale, or the agent will be fined,” she says.

But even then, mismatches can still occur, says Bernitt, and it’s frustrating for buyers, sellers and the agents themselves.

“It’s a lot of wasted time and energy for everyone,” she says. This can be particularly problematic if you are a seller who has temporarily removed the house. Potential buyers who spot the ad and call, to learn that the home is no longer on the market, are likely to be turned off.

“When you put it back on the market, they won’t look at it because you upset them,” she says.

Typically, an agent will find that the ad is still active fairly quickly, especially if they receive calls or emails from interested buyers. But if they don’t, call them. They should be able to make phone calls to have the photos taken offline.

If you don’t get any help from your listing agent, try the agent’s broker. It is the person who owns the agency where the agent works, that is to say the boss of an agent. Word of mouth being so important in the real estate industry, chances are the broker will jump at the chance to make things right.

The article How To Get Your Home’s Real Estate Listing Removed From The Internet appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.


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