If you hire a realtor to sell your Virginia home, you’ll typically pay a commission of 5-6%. This is split between a listing agent and a buyer’s agent. Some people opt to sell their properties For Sale By Owner (FSBO) to save money.
To successfully sell your home without a realtor, you’ll likely need to list it on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Real estate agents use local MLSs to find listings for their buyers, and online home search websites pull data from them.
Unfortunately for FSBO sellers, you can’t just add your property to the MLS. You’ll need to use a Virginia flat-fee MLS service. For a price that’s significantly lower than the average agent commission, these companies will list your property. However, they’ll offer few other services or support, and the quality of flat fee MLS services varies.
You’ll need to consider all your options carefully while remembering that homes sold without realtors usually sell for less.
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Top Flat-Fee MLS Companies in Virginia
🥇 Cottage Street Realty: Best for sellers who want more photos
🥈 Home Discovery Realtors: Best for hard-to-sell homes
🥉 NetRealtyNow: Best for sellers who need help pricing their home
|Cottage Street Realty||Home Discovery Realty||NetNowRealty|
|Number of Photos||Max Allowed||Up to 40||50 to Max Allowed|
|MLS Listing||6 months to Unlimited||Unlimited||6 months|
Not seeing the right company for you? Check out the best nationwide flat-fee MLS companies!
🥇 Cottage Street Realty: Best for more photos
All of the packages include the maximum number of photos allowed by the MLS, which can be great for sellers who have homes with more rooms or larger lots. Plus, the company offers one of the most affordable full-service packages, which offers support in pricing your property and negotiating with buyers.
Cottage Street Realty’s Packages
|Basic||$299||This is an extremely affordable option that will get you up to 150 photos. However, it's only for six months, so it may not be the right choice in a slow market.|
|Showcase||$399||For an extra $100, you'll get a lockbox, yard sign, and showing scheduling and feedback services, which can be helpful for less experienced sellers.|
|Premium||$799||This package includes contract review and a market analysis. But considering the difference in price, inexperienced sellers would be better off going for the Supreme option.|
|Supreme||$999||Including everything in the other packages, this one also includes negotiation services. If you aren’t comfortable dealing with a buyer directly, this is a major benefit.|
- There is an additional fee to ship the yard sign if your package includes one
Cottage Street Realty offers the maximum number of MLS photos with every package, which is a great benefit if you have a larger house or want your listing to stand out from the competition.
🥈 Home Discovery Realtors: Best for hard-to-sell homes
Home Discovery Realtors offers 24/7 support through a toll-free number. It’s an ideal choice for sellers whose properties may take longer to sell because the MLS listing lasts until your house goes off the market.
Unfortunately, the company offers just one package, and it’s more expensive than other entry-level options. And while they’ve been in operation since 1999, there are few online reviews, so it’s difficult to determine the type of service they provide to customers.
Home Discovery Realtors’ Packages
|Diamond Flat Fee MLS Package||$379||This package is comprehensive and includes an unlimited listing period, broker consultations, and more. However, if you need more — or fewer — services, you should consider a different company.|
- You can pay via credit card or check
If you have a hard-to-sell home or live in a market where there aren’t a lot of buyers, this company could be a great fit. You’ll get advice and support from a local broker and your list doesn’t expire.
🥉 NetRealtyNow: Best for pricing assistance
NetRealtyNow offers pricing support with both packages, which is uncommon in Virginia. That makes it an ideal choice for sellers who need help determining a listing price but still want an entry-level package.
While the broker of NetRealtyNow has over 33 years of experience, the company is headquartered in Maryland, not Virginia. The company might not be as knowledgeable about Virginia real estate trends as other companies.
|Flat Fee MLS Listing||$299||This is one of the most affordable packages with pricing support. Sellers also get a decent number of photos (50) and unlimited listing changes.|
|Full Support||$1,299||If you think your can sell your house in less than 6 months, this package offers unlimited consulting services. However it is more expensive the comparable packages.|
- ShowingTime, a service that schedules showings and provides feedback, is available for $50
- With the Full Support package, $299 is due upfront and $1,000 at closing
- Full-service, discounted commission option available
Whether you’re an inexperienced seller or one who’s made the mistake of setting the wrong listing price in the past, NetRealtyNow is a great choice to provide you pricing support.
Alternatives to Flat-Fee MLS Companies in Virginia
Flat-fee MLS companies are not the only way to save money when selling your home. You could sell your home faster and for money with a discount broker.
These are full-service agents who offer their professional expertise for a lower listing commission, typically 1% to 2%. However, you’ll still be responsible for paying a competitive buyer’s agent commission.
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FAQs about Flat-Fee MLS Companies in Virgina
What is a flat-fee MLS company?
A flat-fee MLS company is a service that allows you to list your home for sale on the Multiple Listing Service, which is a database of local properties for sale. The MLS is widely used by buyer's agents to help them find houses for buyers.
Only licensed real estate agents can post a property on the MLS. When you use a flat-fee MLS service, you’re paying an upfront fee for a licensed agent to put your home into this database. But, this is generally one of the only services the agent performs; to successfully sell your home, you'll have to take on most of the responsibilities yourself.
How can I tell if a flat-fee MLS company is legit?
Unexpected fees are the most common complaint sellers report about flat-fee MLS companies. To make sure the company you work with is legitimate, read your contract carefully to find out what’s included and services you may be paying extra for.
You can also check for reviews from former customers. If you notice a pattern of complaints from past customers, you’ll likely want to choose a different flat-fee MLS service. It’s likely similar issues could impact your sale as well.
How much do flat-fee MLS services cost in Virginia?
Flat-fee MLS services typically start at around $299 for the basic entry-level package in Virginia. This price will include listing your property on the MLS with a few photos, and providing blank copies of the standard forms you need for a sale.
If you want additional services, such as help pricing your property, negotiating with buyers, or reviewing your sales contract, you can expect to pay far more. In fact, some services charge $1,000 or more for a package that includes this type of additional support.
Do I need to pay a buyer’s agent commission with flat-fee MLS?
Sellers typically pay a commission to a buyer’s agent. And, in fact, offering some commission is typically required to post your property on the Multiple Listing Service.
While you can offer less than the standard 2.5% to 3% that sellers normally pay, doing so may be shortsighted. Agents won’t have an incentive to bring clients to your home. And considering most buyers work with an agent, it could be harder to find a buyer.
Are seller disclosures required in Virginia?
The Virginia Residential Property Disclosure Act requires that sellers complete certain disclosure forms when selling their property.
These could include disclosure of a septic tank, building code or zoning ordinance violations, a privately-owned stormwater management facility, or if the property was previously used for methamphetamine manufacturing.