Austin MLS FAQ: What Do The Property Status Abbreviations Mean?

As an Austin Texas Realtor, I get the opportunity to work with the MLS on a daily basis. As in all industries, we real estate agents have our own jargon.  Recently, I had a client ask me what all the letters next to listings that I’ve sent her mean, and it dawned on me that if one client had that question, how many others did, but didn’t ask?  I’m going to break down what the status letters mean in the MLS for all of you potential home buyers out there.

A – Active:  A property that is marked as Active in the MLS means that it is on the market, offered for sale, and has no pending or contingent contracts.

AC – Active Contingent:  The property has a contract on it; however, the contract is contingent upon certain criteria being met.  Most often, a contingency is in place because the potential buyer of the property has to first sell their current home in order to proceed with the purchase of the new home.  The property is still on the market.  If you choose to submit a contract on an Active Contingent property, and that contract is accepted by the seller, the primary buyer has a short window of opportunity to remove the contingency or they can terminate the contract.  If they choose to terminate the contract or are unable to remove the contingency, your contract becomes the primary contract.

PB – Pending & Taking Backups:  The property that is listed as PB is under contract, but the seller is still interested in receiving other offers in case the primary offer falls through.  Usually a contract in Pending Backups status is one that is still in its option period.  If you submit an offer on a PB property and your offer is accepted, you will be placed into a backup position…if the primary buyer cancels, your contract moves to the front of the line.

P – Pending:  This property is under contract and is most likely outside of its option period.  If the buyer cancels the contract outside of the option period, they will most likely lose their earnest money, therefore, most contracts that are in Pending status are likely to make it to closing.

W – Withdrawn:  A home with a status of Withdrawn is removed from the market, but still shows in the MLS.  The owner has decided to withdraw, however, the expiration of the listing hasn’t occurred, so technically speaking, the Realtor still has the listing, however it has been taken out of the MLS database.

C – Cancelled:  The listing has been terminated by the Realtor and is no longer available on the market.  It has been removed from the MLS database.

E – Expired:  When a home is listed with a Realtor, it is listed for a certain time frame.  Once that time frame is up, the listing becomes expired unless the sellers agree to an extension.  Sometimes the home will be relisted with the same Realtor, a different Realtor, or taken off of the market entirely.

S – Sold:  The property has gone through the entire escrow process and is no longer available.

Looking for an Austin Texas Realtor specializing in assisting home buyers? 

Call me today to see how I can help you make your real estate dreams a reality; I’d be happy to answer any questions you have about the home buying process.

About Shannon Ensor

Shannon Ensor is a Broker Associate with Sky Realty, the founder of our team and a published author. She began her Austin Real Estate career in 2005 and has earned her ABR and GRI designations. Shannon helps residential real estate buyers and sellers all around Austin and Central Texas. Shannon graduated Magna Cum Laude from Arizona State University, earning her degree in Journalism/Public Relations from ASU's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications and a minor in Business Advertising & Marketing.

One comment

  1. Buyers may also see homes marked as PB that are out of option period, because that listing agent wants to keep the door open in case something falls through. Contracts can fall apart even on the day of closing.

    I’ve had so many backup contracts come to the front of the line. So the bottom line is, if you see a home you love, put in an offer. But, don’t get too emotionally tied to the AC and PB ones and try to stick to the A (active) homes.

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