So, what's with all these "coming soon" signs that you see around town? It seems pretty self explanatory you may say, but there is more to the story than meets the eye. 

Done the right way, the "coming soon" idea is a great one. It alerts friends, neighbors, and people walking or driving past your house to the fact that your beautiful home is coming on the market.  It creates some buzz before it hits the market. You see, once it "hits" the market and goes live on the multiple listing service the clock starts ticking.  Each day your house is on the market gets tracked by the multiple listing service for all agents, and potential buyers to see.

Generally speaking, after 30-45 days the house gets a little stale, and your negotiating leverage goes down with each passing month. It's kind of like when you were back in school and a new kid moved to town. For the first few weeks, everyone wanted to know all about them-where they came from, activities they are involved in etc etc. They were a "hot commodity." After a month or two everyone knew "their story" and the buzz subsided. It's not all that different with a house. By the 60 day mark, anyone that wanted to see your house has probably seen it and they have moved on looking for the next great house. That's why the coming soon idea is great, since that meter doesn't start until the MLS (Multiple Listing Service switch is turned on).

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Back in 2015, I got the idea to start doing "coming soon" signs on Zillow. I approached Zillow about doing it and was met with a "huh?" It wasn't something they had heard of before, but were open to the idea of doing it, at least in our area. I figured why should I count on someone driving by your house to see your coming soon sign when I could put it out there to everyone in the world looking on Zillow. It made sense to me, so I did it. Others have followed my lead, and now its not uncommon to see "coming soon" on Zillow. Progress. 

Ok, so you know what "coming soon" means now and the benefits to utilizing this strategy, but here's where it gets a bit tricky (I'm being nice with that word).  Let's do a little role play for a moment. Let's say Mr. X (I am NOT Mr. X) has listed your house for 1 million dollars and there is a shiny sign in the front yard that says "coming soon."   Another agent has a client (a potential buyer) who happens to see the sign while walking their dog, or perhaps on Zillow and they say  I want to check out that house on 1 Main Street in MADISON NJ (remember it's Mr X's Listing) the agent calls the "coming soon" Listing agent realtor, Mr X, and asks to show their client the house this Saturday. Mr. X the listing agent says he's sorry, but he is not cooperating with other agents for another two weeks, or whatever period of time he chooses-meaning no other agent from a different company can bring in their client to see it.  Their client  can see it ONLY if they go through Mr X. Why would Mr. X do that ? So he can List the house AND bring in the buyer and collect double the commission!  How many agents do you think will tell their clients to call Mr. X directly? How many will just show them other houses waiting the two weeks until they can bring their clients in?  In the meantime, Mr. X is trying to locate his own buyer for the sellers' home, while other real potential buyers out there may be looking at other houses and possibly making an offer on a house that is not yours! 

What's wrong with that you might say?  Mr. X found a buyer for my house and that's what I hired him to do!  In fact, he knocked off .5 % since he did both sides of the deal and that saved me 5,000 dollars. All very true, BUT many potential buyers, who were very interested in your home, may NEVER see it, or have a chance to make an offer.  What if they were willing to pay you more than Mr. X's buyer-substantially more? What if Mr. X under-priced your home? What if a bidding war might have ensued?  Multiple bids also give you more leverage when it comes to potential inspection issues, since your buyer knows that there is another buyer waiting in the wings if they raise too many objections during the inspection process.  

Bottom line you will never know what you might have gotten for your house because you didn't open it up to everyone. What Mr. X did is not illegal. In fact, you signed a piece of paperwork allowing the agent to have an "exclusive" and NOT cooperate with other agents for a specified period of time. That's ok, if that's what you want and you understand it. Most people don't. 

Webster defined trust as, "a person in which confidence is placed."  You can always trust me to do what's in your best interest. I am building my business one client at a time with that underlying premise in mind.