ou’ve decided on your list of must-haves and shared them with
the real estate professional you’ve chosen to help guide you
through the home buying process. Now, your priority shifts to
keeping track of what’s available that meets your needs. That’s when
many house hunters turn to the REALOR.ca website, which provides
access to information about homes listed on the Multiple Listing Service
Chances are some of the properties you’ll run across on
REALToR.cawill be what the real estate profession calls “mere
postings.” A relatively new addition to the real estate landscape, mere
postings are listings where the listing brokerage puts the property
on MLS, but leaves the seller responsible for all other facets of the
transaction: reviewing offers, conducting negotiations and managing the
paperwork when an agreement is reached. It is essentially a private sale
on the part of the seller, but is listed on MLS.
To protect potential buyers, the brokerage providing the mere posting
service is required to ensure that the content of the listing is accurate.
For example, they are expected to confirm the seller’s claims about
renovations, square footage or municipal taxes that appear in the MLS
listing on REALToR.ca .
“With mere posting listings drawing more attention to private sales,
it’s important for prospective buyers to be aware of the potential
implications,” says RECO’s Registrar Joseph Richer.
When your deposit on a property is held by a registered real estate
brokerage, the funds are placed in a special trust account. RECO provides
a consumer deposit insurance program that offers protection in the event
of fraud, insolvency or misappropriation of those funds by a brokerage.
In a mere posting scenario, make sure your deposit is held by your
representative’s brokerage, because if you provide the deposit directly to
the seller or an individual or organization that is not registered to trade
in real estate, RECO’s insurance program can’t protect you.
In a traditional transaction, where both the buyer and seller have
a real estate representative, commission for both representatives is
typically paid by the seller. In a mere posting situation, it’s up to the
individual seller whether they will agree to pay the buyer representative’s
If they won’t, and you proceed with the transaction, it’s up to you to pay
the commission in accordance with the terms of the buyer representation
agreement you signed with your real estate representative.
“Speak with your real estate representative. depending on the seller,
they may be able to negotiate a reduction in sale price to offset the
added expense of the commission,” says Richer. “But to be safe, if you’re
targeting a mere posting, you may want to build in the added expense to
your closing costs.”
Without a professional counterpart on the other side of the negotiations,
a mere posting scenario might mean more work for your representative.
It’s important to know they are obligated to show you all properties that
meet the requirements you discussed at the outset of your partnership,
regardless of whether it’s a traditional listing, a mere posting or a private
Consider speaking with your real estate professional about mere
postings before you start your search. If you feel the prospect of the
potential added cost will deter you from submitting an offer on such a
property, sharing that information will help narrow down your search.
It’s important to know that while there are now more options available
to home buyers and sellers to reduce costs and commissions, make
sure you understand the risks of not using a registered real estate
professional. Short term savings could be more costly in the long run