What Does “Coming Soon” Mean When Selling a House in Massachusetts?


"Coming Soon Listings" is a relatively new concept in which the home is not available for showings or offers but will soon be on the market. These listings generate interest among buyers before the official launch date. The sellers use coming soon listings to test the market response and give themselves more time to complete preparations before the house is listed on the MLS. Although buyers may be interested in checking out these listings and making an early offer, there are both pros and cons to doing so. Also, some regulations need to be followed in Massachusetts when displaying coming soon listings. Buyers need to conduct thorough research and consult with agents to make informed decisions before investing in these properties.

If you are looking for a new home in Massachusetts, you may have come across some listings that say “coming soon.” What does this mean and how does it affect your home buying process?

Watercolor image of the front of a house with great curb appeal depicting what “Coming Soon” means when selling a house in Massachusetts

Here are some things you should know about coming soon listings and their advantages and disadvantages for both buyers and sellers.

What is a Coming Soon Listing?

A coming soon listing is a home that will soon be on the market, but is not yet available for showings or offers. The listing agent for these homes has added a coming soon note to alert buyers in advance. Usually, these homes are in the final stages of preparation before going live on the multiple listing service (MLS).

Why Do Sellers Use Coming Soon Listings?

There are several reasons why sellers may choose to use coming soon listings, such as:

    • To generate interest and buzz among potential buyers and agents before the official launch date.
    • To test the market response and adjust the pricing or marketing strategy accordingly.
    • To give themselves more time to complete repairs, staging, photography, or other tasks that may enhance the home’s appeal.
    • To avoid having too many showings or offers at once, which can be overwhelming or stressful.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Coming Soon Listings for Buyers?

As a buyer, you may be tempted to check out coming soon listings and see if you can get a sneak peek or an early offer. However, there are some benefits and drawbacks of doing so, such as:


    • You may be able to find out about new homes before they hit the market and beat the competition.
    • You may be able to negotiate a better deal with the seller if they are motivated or flexible.
    • You may be able to avoid bidding wars or multiple offer situations that can drive up the price or complicate the process.


    • You may not be able to see the home in person or get a full disclosure of its condition until it goes live on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).
    • You may not be able to use your own agent or get proper representation if the listing agent is also representing the seller.
    • You may not be able to get a mortgage pre-approval or appraisal until the home is officially listed.
    • You may risk losing the home to another buyer who is willing to wait or pay more.

What Are the Rules and Regulations for Coming Soon Listings in Massachusetts?

According to the Massachusetts Association of Realtors, coming soon listings are allowed as long as they comply with the following guidelines:

    • The seller must sign a written agreement with the listing agent that authorizes the coming soon status and specifies the start and end dates of the period.
    • The listing agent must enter the property into the MLS within one business day of obtaining the signed agreement and mark it as coming soon.
    • The listing agent must not show the property or accept any offers during the coming soon period, unless otherwise instructed by the seller in writing.
    • The listing agent must update the MLS status to active, pending, or withdrawn within one business day of the end of the coming soon period or any change in the seller’s instructions.


Coming soon listings are a common phenomenon in the Massachusetts real estate market, and they can offer some opportunities and challenges for both buyers and sellers. If you are interested in a coming soon listing, make sure you do your research, consult with your agent, and understand the risks and rewards involved. Happy house hunting!

error: Content is protected !!