The best MLS services | FAQ about flat-fee MLS companies | Other ways to save on your sale
Whether you're selling a condo in York or an apartment in Portland, paying 6% in realtor fees is a lot.
That’s why some sellers use a flat-fee MLS company to list their home on the MLS — the main place where realtors find homes to show their clients — in exchange for a small one-time fee.
What’s the catch?
- Less support: You manage your own sale — without a full-service agent to handle pricing, photography, paperwork, and negotiations.
- Lower sales price: For sale by owner (FSBO) homes usually sell for significantly less than homes sold by agents — 6% less on average compared to agent-represented properties.
- You still pay a buyer’s agent fee: 88% of buyers work with an agent — who still needs to get paid. In Maine, you’re on the hook for 2.00%-2.93% of the final sale price.
If you want to save on fees but aren’t ready for a “Do-It-Yourself” experience, Clever can match you with full-service realtors who work for a low flat fee of 1.5%.
Clever is the best alternative to the full DIY approach if you're in Maine! You'll save thousands on listing fees, while still getting the support you need to sell your home fast AND for top dollar.
» SAVE: List with a full-service agent for just 1.5%
If you’re still interested in finding flat-fee MLS listing options in Maine, read on! We’ve reviewed the best (and worst!) services in The Pine Tree State.
The 2 best Maine flat-fee MLS companies*
Flat Fee Realty
Unlimited listing updates
For sale sign
* 💰 indicates extra fee or premium purchase required
Sellers who only need basic guidance and are willing to sell their home primarily on their own.
- You can include up to 30 photos in even the basic package.
- Printable flyers and brochures are available for marketing assistance.
- The partial service option can be added to the initial package at any time, with the additional fee due only at closing.
- Greater delay in listing upload - up to 72 hours rather than same day or next day.
Budget-conscious sellers who need a simple, affordable listing.
- Your listing comes with all the state seller's disclosures that you'll need.
- You can pay a little more to post up to 25 photos on the MLS instead of the standard six.
- Flat Fee Realty doesn't offer any pricing or contract assistance.
- The company won't be your listing broker. Instead, they'll refer you to a Maine-based broker who will list your property. If you have problems or questions, you'll end up talking to two companies instead of just one.
Hidden costs of flat-fee MLS companies
Some companies claim to offer flat-rate MLS services but charge "hidden" fees at closing. We've even seen some companies that claim to offer a "free" MLS listing only to charge you a percentage of the sale price at closing.
These predatory practices could cost you thousands of dollars when you expect to pay only a few hundred.
Always make sure to read the fine print for any service. Look out for "closing fees" or "admin fees" that you'll owe the broker in addition to an up-front flat fee.
Further, some flat-fee MLS companies offer a la carte services like photography, paperwork help, and signage. These services can reduce some of your DIY work, but watch out. These add-ons can add up!
At a certain point, you may be better off finding a full-service agent who charges a clear and upfront discounted rate.
Frequently asked questions
How much do flat-fee MLS services cost in Maine?
Typically, you should expect to pay about $200-300 for a flat-fee MLS listing in Maine. However, we've seen basic plans for as low as $200 and more comprehensive services that charge as much as $1,000.
Do I still need to pay the buyer's agent commission?
Although you'll save some money by not having to pay commission to a listing agent (typically 2.19%-3.12% of the sale price), we strongly recommend offering a commission to the buyer's agent. This will incentivize agents to bring their clients to your home.
How much to offer a buyer's agent is up to you, but most selling agent commissions in Maine range from 2.00%-2.93%.
» READ: Average Real Estate Commission in Maine
How do I sell by owner in Maine?
Maine real estate laws require sellers to disclose all important information about their property, including:
- Building and safety information
- Environmental information (like erosion, noise pollution, and whether it's in a flood plain)
- Sewer and wastewater treatment
You'll make these disclosures by filling out the Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement. Potential buyers will review this document to make sure the property is free of deal-breaking flaws. You can either get this form from your listing broker or directly from the Maine state legislature.
» READ: How to Sell a House for Sale by Owner in Maine
What are the alternatives to using a flat-fee MLS service in Maine?
Discount and flat-fee real estate agents
Discount real estate brokers will list your property for as little as 1% — keeping in mind that you usually still have to pay a 2.6–3% buyer’s agent fee.
We’ve reviewed four national and regional discount brokers that operate in Maine.
In Maine, Clever offers the lowest rates, with an added advantage: Clever lets you compare multiple agents from major brands like Keller Williams, Century 21, and RE/MAX.
Clever matches home sellers like you with pre-vetted, full service agents for only a 1.5% listing fee. That's half the rate agents typically charge, letting you keep thousands more in your pocket when your home sells.
Your Clever agent will handle everything for you, from helping you accurately price your home to high-quality photography to negotiating with prospective buyers and filling out the paperwork.
You'll pay only a little more than you'd pay a flat-fee MLS service but save hours of effort by not having to do it all yourself!
Selling without an MLS listing
It's always possible to try selling your house by owner without listing on the MLS. But this makes sense only if you already have a potential buyer lined up.
That's because not listing on your local MLS means not getting the most effective exposure for your property. MLS listings are posted to every major real estate website. Plus, real estate agents access MLS listings to find properties for their clients.
If you don't secure an MLS listing, you'll be limited to sites like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace and relying on a yard sign.