“Flash sales” that occur in a day or less are occurring more frequently in markets where housing inventory is scarce, with some agents pre-marketing sellers’ homes to boost the chances that a deal will be made the same day the listing hits the MLS. Despite the benefits of beating the competition and closing quickly, these transactions can cause sellers to miss out on potentially higher bids or leave buyers who waive the inspection on the hook later for repairs that could have been handled by the seller. “Flash sales don’t do buyers any good, because rationality goes out the window when competition kicks in,” says John Heithaus, chief marketing officer of MRIS, a Rockville, Md.-based MLS. “Sellers in a flash sale are likely to wonder if they could have gotten a better price for their home.” The MRIS subsidiary RealEstate Business Intelligence reports a jump in the number of homes sold in the area with zero days on the market to 174 from 134 during the year-over-year period ended in March, when the number of listings dropped 40.12 percent; over the same period, the number of homes sold within two days surged to 350 from 237. Some real estate agents say sellers benefit from flash sales as they do not have to deal with multiple showings or buyer contingencies, and buyers generally are making full-price offers and even allowing the sellers to rent back the home to give them more time to move. Others, however, say flash sales prevent sellers from testing the market. | Read More