Is your home hidden in plain sight?

On Zillow, it just might be!

Selling Your Property – as the seller, you are the Marketing Director – but your property is now “hidden.”

If you are selling your property By Owner, you are in a way taking on the role of “Marketer” vs hiring an agent to “market the property.” In your role as the “Marketing Director” the goal of course is to get maximum exposure for your product. In this case your “product” is your property.

Why Are So Many Agents Calling – and few buyers?

Because you are in the HZ not the PZ you are quite possibly getting non-stop calls from Realtors. When you posted your property for sale on Zillow, you unknowingly made a decision to attract agents that want to list your property when in reality you wanted to attract buyers. In a way, Zillow hid “your portal” making it harder for buyers to find you and easier for agents to locate you.

Old Zillow and original Coca-Cola

Years back the public was outraged when Coca Cola did away with old Coke and introduced new Coke. The result from the angry public was they brought back old Coke. And a few years ago they did away with “old Zillow” and brought in “new Zillow.” But this time they eliminated the For Sale By Owner from the prominent buyer portal search. In a sense, they “hid the By Owners” from the main search portal.

The result is the By Owner gets 100 agent calls and almost no buyer calls.

“But you are on the HZ, which means you are on the Hidden Zillow, not the PZ, the Prominent Zillow.”


When a person decides to sell their property as a For Sale By Owner, in a way they are choosing to be in the role of Marketing Director. Little did most sellers know that their decision to use Zillow was a decision that would alert 50-100 Realtors. Why so many agents? Because agents hunt and fish for listings on Zillow’s HZ.

“HZ” is known as the Hidden Zillow. Years back HZ did not exist. Now Zillow separates the MLS property listings onto the PZ (Prominent Zillow) and the For Sale By Owner onto the HZ. Few buyers are even aware of how Zillow sorts properties.

Most By-Owners are capable of handling the legal instruments (sale contracts, addendums, inspections) during that facet of the sale, however if buyers do not have a digital search engine to “locate and identify” the property, no sale is commenced.

When you put your property on Prominent Zillow, you are on a new, far larger portal where the buyers are shopping. But even better, you go from a small regional market to a global market exposing the property through 100’s portals, not just 1. Your buyer is “in the market”, but many don’t know you are “on the market.” This is not a partial service program.

THE HYBRID FEE – Significantly greater property exposure

No upfront fees. No add on fees. Just a FLAT $5,000 FEE at closing for the listing side. 

If the buyer has an agent, and if the seller is offering a fee for that agent bringing the buyer, this fee is often 2.5%. That is your decision what you offer to compensate an agent that is working with the buyer.

Hybrid means you can still participate as a By-Owner if you wish too.


Just add $1995.00 to the flat fee and we provide the photographer, we complete your MLS marketing profile, which describes the marketing words that go online in the MLS and that will filter to, Trulia, and hundreds of other sites including Berkshire, Re/Max, eXp, KW, Coldwell Banker and many more. We do a full analysis of your property value based on your property and market conditions.

Additionally, we communicate the buyer and agent showing feedback to you. We update you weekly on market conditions around your property. No upfront or other fees. We oversee the contract and each of the steps just as a normal transaction.  We participate in troubleshooting when problems arise.



We are often asked if the fee is zero, if you, as the seller finds the buyer. Actually, going into the MLS can increase the possibility “you the seller finds the buyer” because oftentimes, “the buyer will find you.” Meaning, the buyer never saw your property while you were on Zillow, but once you enter the MLS, a greater number of buyers will see your property from the additional global exposure, thereby becoming aware of your listing, and contact you directly.

SMART-PR Marketing Program – We Use With Relocation Clientele

Beyond the Hybrid Program, you can upgrade at any time to

We have served Enterprise-Rent-A-Car transferees, and many global firms and local home owners in the sale of their property using the SMART PR strategy. It is our full service program.

If you choose the FULL SERVICE program, the listing side shifts from the flat fee to 1.25% of the sale price. Simply said, a greater degree of service on our behalf. This is the marketing plan and service plan we provide for national and international clients.

In the SMART PR marketing program the total fee is 1.25% listing side, 2.5% buyer side, thus total is 3.75%. We are often asked how our fee can be 3.75% while others are at 6%. It works out this way. When we list a property for a relocation employee, the relo firm pays us 6%. However, they often take a 40% referral back to them. Thus we are often working at a service fee of approximately 4%.

Questions we get from By-Owners

Can I get exposure beyond Zillow and open houses?


There are several proactive marketing plans a By Owner can implement. In some states, Zillow mixes in the By Owner property with Realtor property listings. Try this exercise – search for your property at the Zillow portal but DO NOT key in your address. Search by price point in your city or zip code. If your property DOES NOT appear, you are invisible to most of the market that does not know how Zillow searches work. You now have to go beyond Zillow to find the buyer vs the buyer finding you.

Can I post my property in the MLS and remain a For Sale By Owner?

It depends on the agreement with the broker. Most brokers will not permit this.

The FOX program encourages your participation in the sale of your property. There is no up front fee. If a fee is paid, it is a listing side fee possibly ranging from .50 to 1.25%. This in part depends on the service you want from the HYBRID fee to enter the MLS.

The exposure in the MLS can bring local and international exposure, thus creating more than 10 times the exposure of Zillow. It is probable that the buyer you seek is seeking homes in the MLS because the buyer does not know you are on the market.

If I use this HYBRID program, can I still hold the property open house?

Yes. In many cases if you find the buyer in this fashion, the broker fee to oversee the transaction is just .50 to 1.25%. Open houses that are advertised on MLS create a greater abundance of buyers than those advertised on Zillow. Therefore, simply being in the MLS will make your open house more effective.

If I use this program, can I still control the Zillow posting?

No. The MLS and Zillow have an agreement. When a property enters the MLS, the For Sale By Owner posting is removed. It cannot be on Zillow with a By Owner, however the By Owner can still receive the buyer leads in this program.

Can I still post my home on Facebook Marketplace?

Yes. In fact that would be wise to do right now in order to get more showings.

Does the HYBRID program do a thorough pricing analysis of my property or is that up to me the seller?

While the seller may be correct in their asking price, we conduct a thorough pricing analysis based on both their property and market conditions. The objective is to “avoid giving it away” by underpricing the property, and “avoid getting no buyers” by overpricing the property.

I have property in multiple states, is this program offered across the country?

The Fox Hybrid program is offered in many but not all states. Inquire about the county and state your property is in. Our goal is to assist you in creating far more exposure to the buyer market, which in theory will net you more of your equity, while charging a reasonable fee.

Do we use my For Sale Sign?


This is a very creative program and complies with the MLS rules. Thus, there can be no sign at all, or if there is a sign, it MUST be advertised by the firm that entered the property in the MLS. However, this program still allows us to introduce the buyer to you to show the property in order to keep the fees as low as possible.

If you see a By Owner sign in a front yard, yet the property is in the MLS, this is NOT a permitted act.

If I do the HYBRID program, will agents still call me to list the property?


The calls from agents will cease immediately. Those agents that “have a buyer” will now contact FOX. We, in turn, will contact you if indeed the showing can be authenticated.

Is this with a regular real estate company?

Yes. We are Realtors. We have all the documentation. There is nothing lacking.

Can I advertise on Facebook marketplace?

Yes. However, your ad on Zillow will move from the Hidden Zillow program to the PZ, Prominent Zillow program. And we will direct those buyers to you if you choose to show the property yourself.

Can I list the property at the same time with another real estate agency?

No. In this Hybrid program, the property cannot be in the MLS receiving national exposure with more than one firm. 

Has this program been around long?

Yes. It was first taught at the University of Missouri, St. Louis (UMSL) in 1998. We have been providing this creative solution for over 20 years.

Is my asking price correct?

We also serve national relocation firms with a process called BPO. The Broker Price Opinion looks similar to an appraisal, however it is not an appraisal. We provide services to corporations and individuals as they relocate locally and internationally. We have an extensive pricing program that takes into account the benefits to your property, the condition of your property, and the Velocity in your market.

What is Velocity?

Each of our properties rises and falls based on several or national factors.


The ratio of buyers under contract to the sellers that are available.

Ideally there are zero expired listings. But often even Realtors fail to sell their property listings. When the failed listing exceeds 20% of the market many sellers will begin to experience depreciation as sellers “fight for the next buyer”.

It is normal for 1 out of 10 to fail, but not 2, 3 , 4 out of 10. When this occurs, ‘days on market’ climb. When this occurs, “there are many more price reductions”. When this occurs buyers are pulling back and prices are falling.


For every 1/4 of a percent interest rates rise, buyers exit the market. During Covid rates were at approximately 4%. As of this writing the rates are approximately 7%.

In some areas, housing inventory is just sitting there. Few showings with sellers saying “I will not drop my price.”

True, the seller may not drop their price, but the value is being reduced in any case.

How do I get to see my property's Velocity?

We will give you the data. There is no fee nor any obligation on your part. We do this as a process to prep your property for the market.

What should I hope for in my Velocity report?
  1. More under contract than for sale.
  2. Low days on market. 
  3. Little or no expired listings in your price point. 
  4. That your property is one of the best on the market.
Can't I wait till the market gets hot?

Yes. If you are in a healthy market it could possibly stay that way. But watch your Velocity report. If the market shifts due to economic conditions your equity will begin disappearing. If your Velocity heats up, or the price point 50% below you heats up, you could be experiencing appreciation as we speak. If you are considering selling, it is important to know your numbers.

Is spring season the time to sell? (Or in the south, is it best to wait for the Snowbirds to return?)

This is a simple answer. Make your decision, not based on what a Realtor may say, but rather what your Velocity report says. Most people are surprised to see that 60-65% of the properties sell in the opposite market than they would have perceived. But don’t take my word for it, look at your report.

Should I not sell if it is a Buyer's Market?

If you are not truly in a hurry and can wait it out, the market will most likely appreciate as we move through some of the current economic trends. If you want to move in the next 24 months and your Velocity report reveals you are in a BUYER’S MARKET, it may be wise to make your move now.

In other words, “If you don’t like the possible value today, you may hate it in the next 12 months.” In a Buyer’s Market your property may be valued at $1,400,000, however it could be $1,200,000 in one year. Properties DO NOT appreciate in Buyer Markets, they depreciate.

An $800,000 property in March may be a $750,000 property by the fall season.

The good news is, if you stay long term, 5-7 or perhaps 10 years, the equity will often come back to you as your property appreciates again. But if you are thinking of selling in the next 3-12 months or so, you may want to get to the market to avoid “equity reductions” due to a very bad Velocity reading.

Again, please do not take my word for it. These are simply the trends that we have observed since the 1990’s.

What is the good news?
  1. Your market may be shifting upward. We can help you discover this.
  2. Your buyer is quite possibly looking on, Redfin, or any number of websites from national and international buyers.

Be optimistic. Consider Hybrid.

Am I still a For Sale By Owner in the Hybrid program?

You can still do some of the By Owner activities and achieve a higher net sale price as your property is exposed to a much larger market. Those activities can increase your chances of finding the buyer, so yes you can continue doing many of those items. Hybrid offers you the opportunity to participate, while hiring a full time experienced pro to enter your property in the MLS.

Can you provide Velocity reports for me in another city where I may purchase?

We have served firms such as Enterprise Rent A Car, Inbev Anheuser Busch, Miller, Coors, Frito Lay, Boeing, Coca Cola, Deutsche Financial Services and many more firms. We assist people that buy or sell property and what we are passionate about, we help people “move money”.

Yes we can assist you with Realtor selection in any city and provide Velocity insight.

What is a possible next step?

Call 239 744 0188 or text.
Or email
We are Fox Financial Relocation.

Let’s begin a conversation. No obligation.