What is Sold.com?
Sold.com is a free service that claims to match sellers and buyers with the best real estate service that suits their needs — from traditional realtors to discount brokers to cash buyers.
Beyond quickly spitting out a list of local real estate agents and services, Sold.com offers little to no value for consumers, but numerous drawbacks and risks, including:
- No quality control for its real estate services network
- Bad customer service reps
- Downright shady business practices
If you need help buying or selling a home, we can recommend plenty of better options instead of Sold.com. For example, Clever Real Estate’s free agent matching service vets realtors based on performance, makes personalized recommendations, and pre-negotiates savings on your behalf.
Sellers can use Clever to list with a top local agent for just $3,000 or 1%. Eligible buyers get 0.5% of the purchase price in cash back after closing.
- Sold.com is a fast way to connect with a local realtor.
- The company claims to point customers to appropriate alternative real estate approaches (like cash buyers and discount brokerages), but this aspect of its service is lacking.
- Our mystery shoppers found Sold.com’s Concierges to be aggressive, pushy, and unprofessional.
- Agents in the Sold.com network are not held to quality or performance standards.
- Sold.com reviews are generally negative, with an average rating of 1.6 out of 5 stars.
Is Sold.com legitimate?
Yes, Sold.com is a licensed real estate brokerage in California. All agent matching services must be licensed in at least one state.
Sold.com only has a handful of customer reviews online and they’re overwhelmingly negative, with an average rating of 1.6 out of 5 stars. Sold.com has a C- rating from the Better Business Bureau; it is not BBB accredited.
Executives from several heavy hitters in the real estate industry (such as Auction.com, Fizber, LendingTree, and Realtor.com) founded the company in 2018. Any evidence of pedigree stops there.
Though Sold.com is a licensed and legitimate company, we found a number of its business practices alarming.
🚨 Misleading claims about agents paying for matches
The Sold.com website says, “We believe in putting our customers’ needs first. There’s no pay to play with Sold.com. Every recommendation is based on what is best for the homeowner.” However, that is not true.
Sold.com offers agents a “Guaranteed Display” service, which means they can pay to sponsor certain zip codes. When any customer searches for a realtor in that zip code, the sponsor will be one of their agent matches.
Additionally, agents who pay for Guaranteed Display receive a “Featured Agent” badge on their profile that makes them appear better qualified than the other agent matches.
This practice misleads buyers and sellers who think they’ve been matched with certain agents because they’re best equipped to help with their sale.
🚨 Rude, pushy Concierges
The Sold.com customer service Concierges our mystery shoppers encountered were unpleasant.
We discovered Sold.com Concierges are compensated based on the number of appointments they schedule between buyers/sellers and agents. As a result, our shoppers felt Sold.com concierges were overly aggressive in their efforts to schedule appointments.
The Concierges don’t seem to coordinate their efforts. At one point, one of our shoppers had three Sold.com Concierges calling and texting to schedule an appointment, essentially fighting over the customer.
The Concierges didn’t listen to the requests or concerns of our shoppers. They just plowed through in an attempt to schedule unwanted appointments. In fact, one Concierge disregarded the wishes of one of our shoppers and scheduled several real estate agents for in-person appointments at the shoppers’ home in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Read more about about our shopper’s negative experience.)
🚨 Questionable agent quality
Sold.com says it hand picks only high-performing agents to join its network. We did some digging, and this doesn’t actually seem to be the case.
The company doesn’t share any criteria agents must meet to join its network. It does not seem to vet agents before they join, either.
Typically, agent matching services require a minimum amount of experience and sales performance to ensure agents are qualified to help their customers.
How does Sold.com work?
Signing up for Sold.com is pretty straightforward — you simply fill out a form on its website that asks some expected questions about your sale or purchase, such as:
- Type of property
- Contact details
Sold.com also asks questions similar services don’t ask, such as:
- Why are you selling?
- Have you sold a home before?
- What is the condition of your home?
- What’s more important: selling your home fast or selling your home for the highest price?
- What’s more important: full-service realtor experience or saving money?
Presumably, these questions inform potential alternatives to selling with a traditional real estate agent.
Once you sign up, Sold.com sends you a Seller/Buyer Report where you can view your matches. All of our shoppers received five matches each. This amount was a bit overwhelming compared to alternative agent matching services. We find 2-3 matches are ideal — that range gives you some selection but not too much work comparing and researching each match.
Sold.com claims its matches are based on an algorithm plus a “Concierge assist.” However, our shoppers’ matches came automatically, with no time for a Concierge to have tailored the selections to their individual needs.
The Seller/Buyer Report gives some background information on your agent matches, like a link to their Zillow profile and recent sales numbers. Additionally, some of our shoppers received an option labeled “Worth Considering” at the bottom of their report. This included iBuyer companies and discount brokerages.
Within a few minutes of signing up, a Sold.com Concierge calls and texts to introduce themself and the service. Sold.com Concierges make appointments between agents and buyers/sellers for “free home consultations.” This differs from other matching services. Typically, you communicate directly with your agent matches to schedule interviews.
Sold.com’s Concierges are aggressive about scheduling these appointments. One of our shoppers had three Sold.com Concierges calling and texting to schedule an appointment, which was confusing and annoying.
Sold.com’s Concierges remain in touch throughout the transaction if you choose to work with one of the company’s agents.
It is a free, no obligation service, so you can opt to walk away if none of its agents interest you.
How much does Sold.com cost?
Sold.com is free for home buyers and sellers; all agent matching services are.
If you choose to sell with a Sold.com agent, you’ll still have to cover the realtor commissions. Sellers typically pay 5-6% of the home sale price in agent commissions. Half usually goes to your listing agent and half goes to the buyer’s agent.
Alternative agent matching companies offer a more thorough and thoughtful service than Sold.com, plus they pre-negotiate discounted commission rates with their agents.
For example, Clever agents will list your home for $3,000 or a 1% commission (on sales over $350,000).
Clever buyers receive 0.5% of their home purchase price in cash back after closing.
How does Sold.com make money?
Sold.com collects a percentage of the commission agents earn on deals they close with customers who were referred to them through Sold.com. This is called a referral fee, and it’s how all agent matching services make money.
Sold.com offers agents a Guaranteed Display service, which it charges for. Realtors can pay to sponsor select zip codes. They will appear as an agent match for any customer searching for a realtor within these zip codes (and they’ll get a “Featured” badge on their profile).
The company connects some buyers and sellers with businesses that specialize in alternative real estate approaches, such as discount brokerages or cash investors. Sold.com presumably makes a referral fee when deals with these partners close.
Additionally, Sold.com works with companies that offer related home services, such as mortgage lenders, homeowners insurance providers, and solar power installers. The company likely makes money by referring customers to these partners, as well.
✍️ Editor’s Note
Always evaluate any service provider and comparison shop before signing on the dotted line. If you decide to use Sold.com to find a realtor, don’t assume its mortgage partner will also meet your needs. Do your due diligence and research at least 2-3 options to find the best fit for you.
Why do agents work with services like Sold.com?
Joining the Sold.com agent network and paying a referral fee to the company is more cost-effective and lower risk than other methods of marketing and advertising.
Real estate agents need a steady influx of new customers to sustain their business. And they typically spend a lot of time and money on marketing to attract these new customers.
This takes time away from working on deals, which is how they make money. Plus, there’s no guarantee that resources invested will generate returns, since not all deals close.
Sold.com delivers agents a stream of new prospective customers at no upfront cost, which helps agents grow their business. And more customers means agents can pay the referral fee and still turn a profit.
Agent matching services lower the risk for the agent since they only have to pay Sold.com for deals that actually close. They also save the agent time, which allows them to close more deals.
Sold.com reviews: Major benefits and drawbacks
There aren’t many Sold.com reviews online, but they’re overwhelmingly negative, with an average customer rating of 1.6 out of 5. The company is fairly new, which is likely the reason there aren’t many reviews.
Though it’s difficult to make an overall judgement on the company when there is so little information to base it on, snippets from these Sold.com reviews speak for themselves:
Echoing these Sold.com reviews, our shoppers’ experiences with the company were substandard. The service doesn’t offer any value beyond spitting out a list of random realtors in your area.
We aren’t fans of Sold.com’s pay-for-play Featured Display offering, since it means you may be paired with an agent who isn’t actually a good match for you (or isn’t a competent performer).
The Sold.com Concierges were so bold, they made shopping the service an unpleasant experience. Our shoppers felt they used unethical tactics to force customers to use Sold.com agents without regard for the time or comfort of the agents and customers they serve.
Given the lack of benefits and overwhelming drawbacks, you’d be better off just doing your own realtor search on Google.
Bottom line: Don’t waste your time with Sold.com — check out these alternatives that offer better quality, customer service, and built-in savings instead.
Sold.com pros and cons
✅ Easy sign-up; matches come quickly
The sign-up process for Sold.com is simple. You just answer a few straightforward questions.
This speed and convenience benefit isn’t unique to the company; most agent matching companies provide the same.
Your agent matches come immediately. Other agent matching services may take several hours to deliver your matches because they are checked and selected by your Concierge to ensure they meet your needs.
Sold.com indicates their Concierges do this, but in our shoppers’ experiences, that wasn’t the case. Their matches populated instantly with no time for a person to have customized the selections.
If you just want a handful of agent names in your general area, Sold.com delivers. If you’d prefer to ensure your matches are tailored to your situation, Sold.com might not be a fit for you.
✅ Responsive to requests for additional agent matches
One of our shoppers expressed concern to their Concierge about the proximity of their agent matches. The Sold.com Concierge offered to find two new agents located closer to the shopper.
It took the Concierge several days to deliver these new matches, but they were high quality compared to the initial batch, with recent sales in the specific neighborhood where the shopper lives.
Other agent matching services (Ideal Agent, for example) aren’t as responsive to requests for additional matches.
⚠️ Seller/Buyer Report delivers some helpful information
Sold.com’s Seller/Buyer Report is a dashboard for customers to view their agent matches and learn more about them. It has a convenient feature that allows you to chat with a Sold.com Concierge or request that one call you.
The Seller/Buyer Report features background information on each agent match to help customers make an informed agent choice. This information includes Zillow reviews, number of years’ experience, sales stats, and a map of recent transactions.
Although this background is helpful, we recommend you verify it before making an agent choice, since we’ve found misleading information elsewhere on the Sold.com site.
Sold.com’s dashboard rates somewhere in the middle compared to other agent matching services. Some, like UpNest, offer more in-depth details. Others, like MyAgentFinder, don’t even have a dashboard and deliver agent matches via text.
⚠️ Communication is streamlined through Concierge
Sold.com agents don’t reach out to buyers and sellers directly once they’re matched. This is unlike any other agent matching service.
Instead, Sold.com Concierges act as an intermediary, scheduling appointments for buyers and sellers with the agents that interest them. Theoretically, this benefits the customer, as fielding calls, texts, and emails from five agent matches plus your Sold.com Concierge could be overwhelming.
In practice, things didn’t pan out like this for our shoppers. Three separate Sold.com Concierges reached out to one of our shoppers, seemingly unaware of the others. So, the number of calls, texts, and emails they received wasn’t exactly reduced.
The calls and texts from Sold.com Concierges were frequent and persistent — to an annoying level. Our shopper said it felt like a feeding frenzy with Concierges swarming, trying to score their business.
Even after our shopper agreed to a phone meeting with one Concierge, the others kept calling and texting. This uncoordinated communication was tiresome to our shoppers and left an unprofessional impression of Sold.com.
⛔️ No commission savings for sellers or buyer rebates
Sold.com does not offer cost savings benefits for home sellers or buyers. Other agent matching services (like our friends at Clever) do.
Clever has pre-negotiated a 1% commission rate with its agents (or a flat $3,000 fee for home sales under $350,000). On a $400,000 home, you’d save $8,000.
Clever also offers eligible buyers Clever Cash Back — a check for 0.5% of the sale price after closing. On a $400,000 home, you’d score $2,000.
⛔️ Pushy and unethical Concierges
Our shoppers’ experiences with Sold.com’s Concierges was off-putting. Beyond the uncoordinated outreach, their persistence to schedule appointments with agents was aggressive.
😱 Recapping one shopper’s noteworthy encounter
- Our shopper spoke with a Concierge via phone who pushed hard for an in-person “free home consultation” in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The shopper told the Concierge they were not comfortable with that. They did not want a stranger in their home. Especially during COVID.
- After the call, our shopper received email invitations from the Concierge for two phone meetings with agents. They did not agree to any agent meetings or even express interest in working with these agents.
- Our shopper called the Concierge and asked them to cancel these meetings. The Concierge confirmed the cancellations.
- The next day, at the meeting times, both agents called our shopper for their meeting. The Concierge had lied to our shopper and never cancelled the meetings.
- A few days later, the Concierge left a voicemail for our shopper informing them that two new agents would be coming to their home the following day for in-person meetings.
- Our shopper had never agreed to meeting with any agent, had expressed discomfort with in-person meetings, and had already become upset with the Concierge for scheduling phone meetings without permission. Yet the Concierge scheduled meetings at the shopper’s home anyway.
- The shopper found contact information for these agents online and cancelled the meetings because they could not trust the Sold.com concierge to do so.
After this incident, we learned that Sold.com Concierges are compensated based on the number of meetings they schedule between buyers/sellers and agents. This encourages Concierges to act unethically, scheduling meetings without customer consent and wasting the time of agents who the customer hasn’t indicated any interest in.
⛔️ Off-base agent matches
The agent matches our shoppers received from Sold.com were not tailored to their target neighborhoods; some were up to an hour’s drive away.
A shopper looking for agents in a suburban area got matches specializing in a nearby big city and in rural areas further away, but no agents based in their town.
We believe one of the most important things to look for in an agent is expert local knowledge. Our shoppers did not feel their agent matches possessed this in the neighborhoods they targeted.
⛔️ No agent quality control
Sold.com says the agents in its network are proven to buy for less and sell for more, but it doesn’t say how or why.
Many agent matching companies share specific criteria agents must meet to join its network, including number of years’ experience and minimum sales statistics. Most only work with top performers in their local areas.
Sold.com does not appear to have any quality standards for its agents. We did some digging and found that agents are able to sign up without the company verifying their qualifications.
If buyers and sellers can’t rely on Sold.com to at least quality check its agents, we’re not sure it’s any better than a DIY Google search for an agent.
⛔️ “Alternative” options aren’t showcased
One of Sold.com’s unique selling points is that in addition to traditional real estate agents, it says it matches buyers and sellers with alternative options that might better serve their needs. For example, a flat-fee MLS company or discount brokerage.
In our shoppers’ experience, the service always matched them with traditional agents, despite needs that were clearly suited to an alternative option. Potential alternatives were presented at the bottom of the Seller/Buyer Report in an easy-to-miss section titled, “Worth Considering.”
We feel that providing information on alternative real estate options could be of significant value to some customers. Unfortunately, Sold.com delivers these recommendations as an afterthought.
Top Sold.com alternatives in 2022
Clever Real Estate
Clever Real EstateTRY CLEVER NOW
- List for $3,000 or 1%
- Up to 0.5% cash back for buyers
- Helpful, licensed Concierge
Clever is a free, no-obligation service that matches home sellers and buyers with top-rated, local real estate agents nationwide. Unlike most of its competitors, Clever pre-negotiates big discounts with its agent network, so customers land major savings! Sellers can save up to 50% on realtor commission fees. Buyers can qualify for 0.5% of their purchase price back after closing.
- Partners with full-service agents from top brokerages like Century 21 and RE/MAX
- Provides multiple agent matches so you can compare and choose the best fit
- Pre-negotiates low rates with agent network
- As with most agent matching services, customers may have fewer agent options in certain rural areas
- Sellers who are looking for top local real estate agents at the best rates.
- Buyers who want a great agent while also potentially saving money.
Like Sold.com, Clever is a free no-obligation service that connects you with top local agents. The similarities end there.
Clever’s Concierges are licensed real estate agents who are knowledgeable about home buying and selling. They work with customers one-on-one to find a good agent match and guide them through the transaction process.
Clever pre-negotiates discounted commission rates with the agents in its network to help you save money. The average Clever seller saves $9,600 on their home sale. Clever buyers get 0.5% Clever Cash Back at closing, which is certainly useful when moving into a new place.
- Agents compete for your business
- Potential commission discount
- May offer buyer rebate
UpNest calls itself a “real estate agent marketplace” because agents compete for your business through its platform. After you sign up on UpNest’s website, local agents will submit proposals for you to review. Because they’re competing with one another, they’re incentivized to lower their rates to make their proposals more attractive. While this may drive savings, they may not be significant — particularly in less competitive markets. And unlike some other brands, the savings aren’t actually guaranteed.
- Agents compete for your business, which can drive savings
- Platform allows customers to easily shop around for the best agent match
- Discounts are not guaranteed and may be minimal
- Sellers who are looking for a good agent and aren’t concerned about savings or customer service.
- Eligible buyers who are looking to potentially lower their closing costs
UpNest is a popular agent matching service that offers a “real estate agent marketplace” where local realtors submit proposals to compete for your business.
By manufacturing competition, UpNest drives potential savings for buyers and sellers. Some agents may offer a lower commission rate or a buyer rebate to make their proposal more attractive. UpNest’s savings aren’t guaranteed and may be minimal compared to alternatives like Clever.
UpNest’s customer dashboard provides helpful information so customers can easily compare agents and make an informed choice.
Ideal AgentFULL REVIEW
- List for 2%
- Limited agent network
- Licensed, helpful Concierge
Ideal Agent can match you with a top-rated local realtor who has agreed to offer full service for a discounted 2% listing fee. Ideal Agent has strict standards for its agent network, claiming it only works with agents whose sales numbers are in the top 1% of their local markets. Notably, Ideal Agent only provides customers with one agent match, so if comparing options is important to you, it might not be a good choice. And while it does offer built-in savings for sellers, they’re not as significant as those offered by some top competitors, like Clever.
- Offers some built-in savings for home sellers
- Sets high performance standards for its agent network
- Offers a discounted 2.5% buyer’s agent commission, which might disincentivize realtors from showing your home to clients
- Only matches you with one agent
- Its limited network size may mean spotty coverage in smaller towns and rural areas
Sellers who live in a major metropolitan area, don’t want to spend time comparing agents, and would like some savings.
Ideal Agent has stringent guidelines for agents that join its network. They must be top 1% sales performers in their local area and close a high amount of deals annually.
Ideal Agent concierges are licensed agents who are knowledgeable and helpful to customers. The company offers a discounted 4.5% commission rate, compared to the typical 5-6%.
Ideal Agent only provides one agent match per customer. It’s best to use in tandem with another agent matching service or a DIY realtor search, so you can interview at least 2-3 agents, compare them, and pick the best fit for you.
The bottom line: Should I work with Sold.com?
We do not recommend using Sold.com to find a real estate agent. It misleads customers with its claims, allows agents to pay for matches, and encourages aggressive and unethical behavior by its Concierges.
Give Clever or another agent matching service a try instead. Not only will you get better value in terms of agent quality and concierge assistance, but you will also save thousands on your transaction.
How much does Sold.com cost?
Sold.com is free for home buyers and sellers. However, you'll still have to pay full agent commissions, which are typically 5-6% of the home sale price.
Is Sold.com legitimate?
Yes, Sold.com is a legitimate and licensed agent matching service. However, other agent matching companies provide better customer service and lower commission rates.
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