In Michigan, where the average home value is $236,675, the typical seller pays about $7,100 (or 3%) of their sale profits to a listing agent.
By working with a Michigan flat fee MLS company, you can eliminate almost the entire listing commission and save thousands of dollars.
A flat fee MLS company is exactly what it sounds like: for a flat fee (usually a few hundred dollars), the company will list your home on the MLS, the main directory for active listings, usually only accessible to real estate agents. From there, your listing will show up on real estate websites like Realtor.com, Redfin, Zillow, and Trulia.
It sounds simple, easy, and smart on your wallet. But there’s more to consider.
While flat fee MLS companies get your listing in front of more buyers, that’s pretty much it. You’ll be on your own when it comes to pricing your home, taking photos, scheduling showings, and managing all legal paperwork, just to name a few.
So, is using a flat fee MLS company worth it? It depends.
How savvy are you with selling? Can you handle the work of the transaction on your own, which could include everything from pricing your home to navigating the stacks of closing paperwork? If done right, there can be some significant benefits to using a flat fee MLS – but it’s a lot of work.
If you’re considering the flat fee MLS model, check out our guide on how to list on the MLS and save, then see our rankings for the six best flat fee MLS companies in Michigan.
If you want to save but aren’t confident you’ll have the time or know-how to sell your home yourself, our friends at Clever Real Estate offer a compromise: a full-service agent for a pre-negotiated 1.5% listing fee. The average seller who lists with Clever saves $7,000!
|Why You Should Trust Us
This article draws on 8 hours of research on six flat fee MLS companies. Our research process consisted of:
6 Flat Fee MLS Companies in Michigan
1. Modern Way Realty
Best For: Affordable Full-Service Package
Modern Way Realty is owned and operated by a Michigan real estate agent with over 17 years of experience, so sellers can expect a certain level of personalized attention and local expertise.
Modern Way Realty Costs
|Premium||$795||Basic package, plus:
✍️ Editor’s Take
They offer two packages with statewide coverage: a very serviceable $395 flat fee package and a $795 full-service package. Both packages offer great value, and Modern Way is a solid choice for Michigan sellers, whatever level of services they need.
Modern Way’s outstanding strength is its Premium deal, which is only $795 — a great value for a full-service package.
But Modern Way’s lowest-priced package, its $395 Basic flat fee listing, offers great value, too. Most of Modern Way’s competitors have a similarly priced offering that only allows a few photos, making an upgrade a near-necessity, but Modern Way’s entry-level package is totally adequate and then some!
When you take Modern Way’s excellent reviews into account, this service is a rock-solid choice for most Michigan sellers.
2. Kermath Realty
Best For: Pay Later
This statewide flat fee company offers a broad spectrum of services, from a very basic flat fee MLS listing with only 6 photos to a $998 full-service package. For sellers who don’t want to pay a lot upfront, Kermath also offers a full-service plan that requires you to pay only $349 upfront and 0.5% at closing.
Kermath Realty Costs
|Silver||$499||Bronze package, plus:
|Gold||$998||Silver package, plus:
|Platinum||$349 plus 0.5% at closing, max of $1,500||Same as Gold package|
✍️ Editor’s Take
All of Kermath’s packages offer decent value, but there are no real standouts here.
Because the Bronze package only has 6 photos, most customers will have to start with the $499 Silver deal in order to create a successful listing, and that plan is relatively pricey for what it offers.
The full-service Gold package is $1,000, which is around average for the state. The Platinum plan lets you “sell now, pay later” (sort of — there’s still a $349 charge upfront). But a conventional listing agent doesn’t ask for any payment upfront, though they do take 2–3% at closing.
That being said, Kermath has very good reviews, so sellers who see a package they like can feel pretty confident about getting great service.
Best For: Tech-savvy sellers
Houzeo is a high-tech national MLS flat fee company, headquartered in New York and founded in 2017. Houzeo offers a slick, user-friendly listing management dashboard called “Intellilist,” and users can make offers through Houzeo’s online platform. If you’re a tech-savvy seller and the idea of a company with national scale and reach appeals to you, Houzeo is worth a look.
Thanks to Houzeo’s national scale, its prices are on the affordable side. Its entry-level package is $329 and the premium package is only $429, though we should note that Houzeo adds on a lot of small service fees for additional services.
Houzeo is a big national brand with thousands of positive reviews, and a high-tech listing platform. For tech-savvy sellers who want a safe, proven service, Houzeo is a solid choice.
But as we touched on above, it charges for add-ons that you’d get for free with another MLS service. (Even if you buy their “Gold” package, you still have to pay an extra $49 for a yard sign.) And we should mention that, per some reviewers, because they contract with local licensed brokers, customer service can be uneven.
Best For: FSBO Fans
This popular and well-respected FSBO website also offers a flat fee MLS service, though its services are limited to a single package. While FSBO.com has national reach and a good reputation, its main focus is offering For Sale By Owner (FSBO) listings, and it shows in their cursory flat fee MLS package, which is both barebones and highly priced.
|Flat Fee MLS Listing||$399.95||
There isn’t outstanding value here— FSBO.com’s only package is essentially a barebones flat fee MLS service, but it’s priced at nearly $400, which is far more expensive than equivalent packages from other companies on this list. Sellers who want more services, like fliers or signs, will have to purchase them through the FSBO.com store.
Sellers who see a lot of value in being listed on FSBO.com in addition to the MLS might want to consider using this service, but most others will find better value elsewhere.
5. Flat Fee Pros
Best For: Basic Package
It’s not entirely clear who owns and operates Flat Fee Pros, but the company’s website claims the team has over 50 years of combined experience with over 3,000 transactions. The company offers an unusually wide range of packages, ranging from Basic at $349 to a $1,499 full-service package.
Flat Fee Pros Costs
|Bronze||$399 (plus 0.5% up to $1,000)||Basic package, plus:
|Silver||$749||Bronze package, plus:
|Gold||$999||Silver package, plus:
|Ultimate||$1499||Gold package, plus:
✍️ Editor’s Take
Flat Fee Pros offers five different packages. The entry-level package offers pretty good value, with a 6-month listing and 15 photos, but it can be hard to tell what differentiates the others, especially at the high end.
The Ultimate package is $500 more expensive than the Gold package, but the only difference between the two seems to be use of a drone, and “rush service.” The Gold package is only $250 more than the Silver package, but offers full service — which makes it unlikely that anyone would opt for the Silver package.
The company also doesn’t have any online reviews, which is always a big red flag for prospective customers.
6. Flat Fee Realty
Best For: Simplicity
Flat Fee Realty is a national company that offers services in many counties in Michigan — you can check the company’s website for a complete list of service areas to see if it operates near you. The company has a single package of services with an option for an upgrade.
Flat Fee Realty Costs
|Basic MLS package||$269||
✍️ Editor’s Take
It’s hard to imagine a situation where Flat Fee Realty would be a clear favorite over the other options on this list. As a national company with a presence in nearly every state in the U.S., it’s unclear if they even maintain a Michigan office, meaning that they likely lack any meaningful insight into the local market. And their one package, at $319 (including the photo upgrade), includes far fewer services than similarly-priced packages from their competitors, and they don’t even cover all of the state. In addition, they require sellers to offer at least a 2% buyer’s agent commission— of which they may take 0.25% on top of your flat fee.
How to Get On a Michigan MLS Without a Realtor
Step 1: Shop Around for a Flat Fee MLS Company
Start by looking at company reviews. Websites like Yelp, Google Reviews, and Trustpilot will give you a window into the experiences of real sellers. If you find recurring complaints about issues like hidden fees, unresponsive communication, or poor quality services, this should be a big red flag!
On the other hand, if most users had a positive experience, that should give you a little reassurance that you’re on the right track.
You’ll also want to make sure the company actually operates in the area where you’re selling. Michigan has over 25 MLSs, so double-check your company’s coverage.
Step 2: Choose Your Package
Most companies offer a base package that includes an MLS listing and very few other services, which will leave most of the responsibilities of the sale on your shoulders.
Are you up to it? Do you have any experience in marketing, real estate, or contract negotiation?
If the answer is no, you might want to consider a package that offers more services, like help with negotiation, advice on pricing, and guided showings and open houses.
When looking at packages, the main factors to consider are:
- Number of photos included. In general, the more photos included with the listing, the more interest you’ll get from buyers.
- Listing length. While a yearlong or unlimited listing might sound like it offers great value, most homes sell quickly. If your home is still sitting on the market after a few months, it probably makes more sense to take it off the market and relist later than to just let it sit there indefinitely.
- Open house and showing support. Conducting showings of your home can be stressful and time-consuming if you’re not used to hosting a crowd. For many sellers, tapping into a company’s expertise in this area is well worth the extra money.
- Help with paperwork. Some MLS companies offer contract templates, disclosure forms, and other document support. This can be helpful if you’re worried about being able to find the right materials on your own. Keep in mind that if these documents aren’t completed and filed correctly, there could be serious legal consequences, so most sellers will want an agent’s or lawyer’s guidance here, just to be safe.
Step 3: Prepare to Handle a Lot of the Process Without Support
In Michigan, a flat fee MLS company will get your listing on the MLS, but it won’t do much else for you.
If you go the flat fee MLS route, you should be prepared to act as your own agent. That means handling tasks like:
- Pricing your home
- Marketing your home
- Scheduling and conducting open houses
- Negotiating contract points like contingencies
- Handling closing paperwork
That’s a lot to take on — especially if you don’t have experience in real estate! For that reason, many sellers hire a transaction coordinator or a real estate attorney to help navigate the sale process.
Alternatives to Flat Fee MLS in Michigan
🥇 Best Option: Clever Real Estate
Clever Real Estate is a well-established, nationwide company that uses a licensed concierge to connect sellers with experienced local agents in their area. After learning about your goals and preferences, Clever matches you with 1-3 agents in your area to interview and select from. If none of them meet your expectations, Clever will send you more matches.
All Clever partner agents provide full service for only 1.5% in listing fees, which can save you thousands of dollars over the typical 3% listing fee.
Although Clever is slightly more expensive than most flat fee MLS services, you’ll get what you pay for, with high-quality assistance from an agent with a top-performing brokerage, such as Keller Williams, Coldwell Banker, and RE/MAX.
Most flat fee MLS companies will get your house on the MLS and leave you to do the rest, but a Clever partner agent can help you with:
- Listing your house on the MLS
- Pricing and marketing your house
- Coordinating professional photography
- Running showings and open houses
- Negotiating with the buyer’s agent to get you the best price and terms
- Guiding you through the closing process
Plus, Clever’s matching service is totally free with no obligation.
Meet trusted real estate agents with Clever 🤝
Typically, discount brokers offer a full-service agent experience (or close to it) for less than the typical 3% listing agent commission.
Discount brokers usually charge 1-2% commission, which is significantly more than you’d pay with a flat fee MLS company, but is potentially thousands less than a conventional 3% commission, and you’ll potentially get a lot more for your money.
The risk is that some discount real estate brokers cut corners or operate at a massive scale that limits their ability to provide adequate customer service. Make sure to read the fine print and understand what you’re truly paying for.
Some leading discount brokers in Michigan are:
Cash Home Buyers
If you need to sell your home quickly and don’t mind giving up some equity, consider working with a cash home buyer. Cash buyers are typically individual investors or companies looking to buy homes below market value to fix up and resell for a profit.
Because they’re usually looking for a bargain, cash buyers typically offer less than what your home is worth. However, if you’re motivated to sell quickly and don’t mind taking a lower price, working with a cash buyer can be a good option.
Cash buyers that offer to buy homes in Michigan include:
- Steve Moves Michigan
- We Buy Houses
- We Buy Ugly Houses
- Express Homebuyers
- Waymark Homes
- I Buy Michigan Homes
Curious about how much a cash buyer would offer you? Our friends at Clever can help you compare offers from top cash buyers to listing on the open market. Start weighing your options ⚖️
Frequently Asked Questions About Flat Fee MLS Companies in Michigan
What is the best flat fee MLS listing service?
The best flat fee MLS listing service depends on which state you’re in and what you need out of the service, but Houzeo is a national company that’s a great choice for a tech-enhanced, highly rated listing service. Learn more about Houzeo and other flat fee MLS listing services in Michigan.
How much is a flat fee MLS listing?
A flat flee MLS listing typically ranges from about a hundred dollars for a basic package to over a thousand dollars for a full-service listing. Read more about the costs of flat fee MLS listings in Michigan.
How do I list on an MLS For Sale by Owner?
You can list your house For Sale by Owner (FSBO) on an MLS by choosing a flat fee MLS company available in your area, purchasing an MLS listing, uploading your home’s information and photos, filling out the paperwork, and then posting your listing. Check out our list of the top 6 flat fee MLS companies in Michigan.