“Sold off the Market” is the latest and strangest trend in selling real estate. Normally you will just see a large sold sticker across a real estate sign in front of a house but now you’ll also see the words “Sold off the Market”. Of course, you can ask, is it really off the market if it has a real estate agent sign out the front of the property? Perhaps these signs are only erected once the property is sold off the market.

One buyer’s agent defines “off the market” as genuinely ‘off-market’, as opposed to ‘pre-market’, ‘pre-launch’ or ‘sneak preview’, if it hasn’t been advertised on the major real estate portals or marketed.

The off market phenomenon has been aided by cyclical factors. Residential property prices, especially in Sydney and Melbourne, have been heading downwards for around two years, until recently. Potential vendors have been holding back their properties from sale creating shortages of certain types of homes on the market. Hence, the search for off market properties by buyers.

A startup business has appeared to make off market homes more accessible to buyers. This is one of the reasons why this is a strange trend. Making off-market homes more accessible to buyers sounds like putting them on the market.

The startup is called Listing Loop. Will it struggle when the supply of homes increase in a more ‘normal’ market?