There are many different types of homes for sale out there, an off-market property being one of them. But when you see off-market in the listing description, what does that even mean? In short, it can be a strategy that helps the seller remain more discrete, but sometimes, it’s also a sales tactic.
Whether it’s better to buy off-market is debatable, mostly because buying solely off-market means you might be missing out on the majority of homes for sale.
So before you favour off-market properties over standard ones, let’s take a more in-depth look into what they are exactly and why it doesn’t hurt to stick to the old-fashioned route.
What does the term off-market mean?
A property that is off-market means it’s on sale or has been sold without any advertising. So there’s a small chance you’ll find them on major real estate platforms. There won’t be that classic signboard outside the home and it won’t be put up for auction either.
It’s really all up to the agent to use their networks in order to sell the property in private. If you’re a buyer, you probably won’t even hear about the listing being for sale unless you know the agent personally.
Buyer’s agents also have connections when it comes to off-market properties.
What’s the benefit of selling off-market?
Often, the vendor might have a high-profile or not wish to disclose their details publicly. Or sometimes you might get a busy family who’s still living in the home and can’t do regular inspections.
Or another benefit of a private sale is time. Less time is taken to advertise the property and schedule showings, so it’s a good option for a quick fix.
Do real estate agents prefer selling off-market?
Some estate agents think selling off-market is a smart tactic for a few reasons:
If the agent has a close relationship with a buyer’s agent, it’s easy to use their networks to connect with buyers. Instead of spending time on styling the home, taking photos and holding open houses, any serious buyers can do inspections privately.
If the property has a history of selling issues, the agent may prefer to sell off-market. The term offers the idea of exclusivity and new buyers who haven’t done their due diligence may be attracted.
While there are reasons to sell off-market, it doesn’t always mean the property is better or more worth the price tag.
Why do I see “off-market” on some listings?
The words still appear on some listings but this doesn’t mean they’re actually an off-market listing. The expression makes the property seem hard-to-get and elusive, so buyers are quickly drawn to those descriptions.
Don’t forget that as a buyer, you’re making one of the largest investments in your life. Instead of focusing on descriptions, you should ask yourself other questions like:
- Does this property suit my needs?
- Is the property priced fairly?
- Is it truly within my budget?
- And if it isn’t, what is making up for the difference?
If you haven’t found your dream home yet, we can also help you out in that department. Browse our search page to check out some amazing listings available right now. But don’t just stop there, download our app to get the full Soho experience. Just remember to shortlist or swipe left on our listings so we can send you others that better match what you’re looking for.