We recently became aware of a messaging software product “Yapmo” which is enabling brokerages to bypass the open market when selling homes! Not only is Yapmo helping agents price homes for their sellers, it is also helping them sell the homes before they are listed and may be enabling pocket listings in the process!
The main purpose of Yapmo wasn’t to validate pricing or even sell houses. Rather, it was to replace ineffective company communication systems and allow emails to be used more effectively.
But it turned out that “it works extremely well” in the real estate sector, says Paul Everton, chief executive of the Chicago software company. And as far as listings and sales go, Everton says, “It just hit me from left field.”
Yapmo describes itself as a mobile software company that builds work-flow tools to enable a company’s employees to work more efficiently and communicate smarter. It says its tools boost productivity, increase sales and accelerate ideas.
Yapmo says the typical employee spends 13 hours a week in his or her email inbox, and real estate agents are no different.
Agents found that the software allowed them to “preview” possible listings with their fellow agents and market them internally before they hit the open market.
That’s a form of so-called pocket listings, which are somewhat controversial in and of themselves.
With a pocket listing, a property for sale is held out of the local Multiple Listing Service while the seller’s agent shops it among his list of clients and friends. If the agent finds a buyer, he gets to keep the entire commission rather than share it with a buyer’s agent.
But while a house is in the agent’s pocket, so to speak, it is not exposed to the entire market, as it would be if it was on the MLS. And in theory at least, if the house was listed, the seller might have been able to secure a higher price.
Under the rules of most MLS systems, a property must be listed within 48 hours of receiving a signed listing agreement. So a true pocket listing is only a short-term ploy at best.
But the Yapmo software makes the process more efficient. Agents are able to automatically shop the property in-house directly to buyers and other agents who have expressed an interest in that kind of house, that price range or perhaps that area.
Yapmo also works well for sellers who don’t know what their homes are worth, or for those who value their privacy and don’t want to tell the world that they are getting ready to put their properties on the market or what price they are asking.
Are you seeing agents use Yapmo in your area? We’d like to hear from you!
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