In your settings for your IDX search you can specify which properties will be displayed by default in searches.  The options look like this:

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The Con:

Unless you’re doing a CMA, which means you can look up the sold properties to make that happen, let’s talk about why you do not want to allow default display of sold properties in your searches.

Your prospective buyer is searching for a home, and they have a set of criteria, including features, areas and price range.  Can they buy a home that just sold?  Silly question, as we know they can’t.  Why would we want them wandering through sold properties matching their criteria?  While we want them comparing active properties that meet their criteria, comparing active homes to ones already sold can bring problems:

  • “This home that just sold was priced lower but has larger rooms than the ones I’m seeing for sale.”
  • “Why can’t we find an active listing just like this one that sold last month?”
  • “Three of these homes that sold three months ago were all priced lower, so maybe we can make a really low offer on the active home we like best.”

We can readily see that they’re using old information to make negative comparisons to the current market and homes available to them.

Now, what about pending sales?  After all, they may not get to closing and could become available to our buyer.  Therein lies the problem, as most if not all will close, and they can only cause our buyer to delay making a buying decision.  Making a backup offer, though usually welcomed by the seller, definitely puts the brakes on any other buying activity.  During the delay, they could lose the opportunity to purchase a home they already know meets their needs.

The Pro:

Of course, we all will respond to direct requests by our clients to view recently sold or pending sale properties.  The concept of over-the-top service would dictate that you provide custom search results for appropriate sold properties that are similar to a listing client’s home.  That way they can use the data you provide in working with you to arrive at the proper sale price.

However, if you have one of those “do-it-themselves” types, you may want to allow them to do their own searches, and this would require that you change the settings such that they can do so.  Think about it though, and offer to send along custom results rather than letting them choose comps that may not be appropriate.