Our real estate industry loves using acronyms and lingo as if our clients completely understand us. One area which is particularly confusing is the number of days a property has been on the market. For decades MLS’s only provided one number for us and that was the “days on market” or DOM as we call it. However, this number was recalculated every time a listing was taken off the market so the real “life of a listing” could be monkeyed with by the listing agents. In order to combat this problem and provide a true representation as to how long a property has been for sale, our Carolina Multiple Listing Services (Charlotte Regional REALTOR Association) now uses three different terms related to the time a property has been in the MLS : Days on Market, Cumulative Days on Market and List to Close.
Here is the definition of each of these terms:
DOM (days on market): This number begins accruing from the date the listing contract states as the “effective” or “marketing” date which is also entered into the MLS. As long as this listing is in the MLS under this listing contract each day that goes by is counted. So, if you ask your Realtor how long a property has been on the market the first number they will see on their MLS listing sheet is this one.
CDOM (cumulative days on market): Okay, so let’s say at the end of their 6-month listing contract the property hasn’t sold and the sellers’ decide to list with a different broker. While the DOM is reset back to 1 day, the CDOM will add the DOM of all prior listing contracts on this property to this current contract. On day one the DOM will say 1 but the CDOM will be 181. (6 months from before plus the first day of the new listing.)
List to Close: This number provides the total number of days specific to the MLS number from Listing Contract Date to Closed Date.
What confuses many buyers is that the DOM and CDOM accrue for “Active” and “Temporarily off Market” statuses only. However, DOM and CDOM do NOT include any days when the listing is “under contract show” (UCS) or “under contract no show” (UCNS).
My buyers and I use these numbers throughout their home search as a gauge of how “hot” or “cold” a listing is and to help us determine how motivated a seller may be. Clearly, if a property has only been on for a few days it would make sense that the seller might be less motivated to work with a low offer. However, if a new listing has in fact got a CDOM of 200 then we know it has actually been on the market a long time which we take into account when evaluating the price to offer.
Now, this this clear as mud? When in doubt just ask your Realtor how long the property has been on the market and take it from there!
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