The Pros and Cons of Pricing a Property at $1 for Sale

In the dynamic world of real estate, it’s not uncommon to come across listings that are priced at a seemingly irresistible $1. At first glance, you might be tempted to think, “What a bargain! I can’t even buy a donut for $1!” Your listing agent might even suggest this strategy, emphasizing the advantage of grabbing potential buyers’ attention by ensuring your property appears at the top of MLS searches. While it’s true that pricing your property at $1 can propel it to the top of MLS listings due to the default ranking in ascending order, there are also significant disadvantages and potential stigmas associated with this approach.

Advantages of a $1 Listing


A $1 listing can indeed make your property stand out. It’s an effective way to attract eyeballs, as most buyers sort MLS listings by price, starting from the lowest.

Induce Curiosity

By pricing your property at $1, you create an atmosphere of curiosity. Potential buyers may be more inclined to click on your listing to learn more, which can lead to more inquiries and potential offers.

Competition Advantage

Your property will be competing with those listed at higher prices. When buyers are searching for the best deals, your $1 listing can be a beacon.

Disadvantages of a $1 Listing

Perceived Value

Listing your property at $1 can inadvertently suggest a lack of value or the real asking price is overpriced. Buyers might assume that the property has significant issues or is a distressed sale.  The buyers might also assume that the property must be outrageously over-priced and would not bother to ask for the actual selling price.

Unrealistic Expectations

Attracting buyers with a $1 listing may generate unrealistic expectations. When potential buyers discover the real asking price, it can lead to frustration and mistrust.  The buyers might simply avoid all $1 listing for the future.


Properties listed at $1 may carry a stigma. Properties listed at $1 may carry a stigma. There is a potential issue of stigmatization associated with properties listed at $1. Some buyers may attach negative connotations to such properties and actively steer clear of them due to past negative experiences.

Absence of a Stated Price

In certain situations, a listing agent may set the price at $1 due to uncertainty about the property’s market value, effectively shifting the responsibility to potential buyers to determine the appropriate price. However, this strategy can be problematic. Listing agents possess a wealth of knowledge about the property, far more than any buyer or buying agent, yet they are unable to establish a selling price. Expecting buyers or their agents to do so without having even visited the property can discourage prospective buyers from considering the property.

Tips for a Successful $1 Listing

When considering a $1 listing for your Toronto property, there are several key factors to keep in mind that can enhance your chances of a successful sale.

Full Disclosure

One of the most important aspects of a $1 listing is full disclosure. It’s crucial to be transparent with potential buyers about the reasons behind this pricing strategy. Whether you’re using it to generate attention, highlight a unique selling proposition, or for another strategic reason, open and honest communication is key. Potential buyers will appreciate your candour and be more likely to engage in the process if they understand your intentions.

Market Strategically

Working closely with your real estate agent is essential to ensure that the $1 pricing aligns with a well-thought-out marketing plan. Your agent can help you showcase the property’s positive attributes effectively and position it in the market to attract the right audience. Properly aligning your pricing strategy with a marketing plan can significantly impact the success of your $1 listing.  There might be situations that $1 listing works to your favour,  this is best discuss with your listing agent. 


In conclusion, using a $1 listing as a selling strategy for your property can be attention-grabbing, but it also comes with its own set of pros and cons. To increase your chances of success, carefully evaluate your specific situation and the prevailing market conditions. Open and transparent communication with potential buyers is essential, and with thoughtful planning and strategic execution, a $1 listing can be a successful approach to selling your property in the competitive real estate market.

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