DD“It sounds great! Pay no commission on the sale of my home by doing it myself. I could save a lot of money.” Let’s research a bit deeper into the facts and then let you decide for yourself. What is involved with selling your home? Putting a sign in the front yard and waiting? Maybe. In rare markets like California’s 2003-2005 volcanic home pricing surge, there seemed to be an endless array of rabid homebuyers throwing the value of logic to the wind. As we know by reading the local newspapers that has ended. At that time a property could receive multiple offers within minutes or hours of going public. In today’s market, properties listed by an agent can stay active for up to six months (shorter if aggressively marketed). With For Sale By Owners, they sit for much longer, if they sell at all. FACT: 8 out of 10 FSBO’s eventually choose to list their home with a Real Estate professional because the agent can sell it quicker and net the seller more money at the time of close. Guess what, the selling price is not the only factor when it comes to your profit. The sellers net is what really matters, it spells money in your pocket at the end of the day.

I am going to give you five reasons why you are at a disadvantage when trying to sell your home alone:

1. Serious Buyers shop FSBO’s to save money. When buyers are dealing with FSBO’s they know that they can lowball offers. They feel that the seller is already not paying 6% in broker fees; so right away they can reduce you to 6% less than your asking price. If you accept that offer you have immediately lost the money that you perceived to be saving by not using an agent. The worst part of this is that you, the seller, ends up doing all of the work alone.
2. Third party negotiating saves money. You may have emotions involved with the sale of your home such as, I need to sell by a certain date, or, if I don’t accept this offer there may not be another as good to come along. After doing everything on your own you may feel that ”I am too tired to continue dealing with this.” Because there is a lot of time and energy used during the sale of real property.
Fact: For Sale By Owner properties sell for 12% less than agent involved property transactions nationwide. At that rate you could have employed the marketing, connections, knowledge, and negotiating skills of four Real Estate professionals and still netted the same amount of money in your pocket at the time of close. I suggest only using two agents and keeping the other 6% as a bonus to yourself for saving so much time and work.
3. The Law of Supply and Demand. It’s simple, the more property available on the market, the slower they are to sell. This is especially true without the proper exposure and marketing techniques. The longer a home takes to sell, the more money a seller stands to lose. Interest rates may go up making it harder to qualify buyers, loan costs may go up, new homes may cost more, and your home may be worth less.
4. Marketing- exposure, prospects, value. An agent has a wide range of tools at their disposal. A website, the MLS, previous and present clients, signs, a lockbox, and ties to the Real Estate community can all be invaluable to the sale of your home. Without these tools you are alone, and may not receive what the property is worth in True Market Value.
5. Difficulty of separating lookers from buyers. Ask any Real Estate Professional what the most time consuming mistake of their first two years of business was, and this subject will arise. For agents it is our job to help people with their Real Estate problem. If we spend a weekend or two, or three showing property to potential buyers and nothing comes of it, we can write it off as part of the job. As an FSBO I assume that you have your own career and possibly a family, and enjoy your free time. Wasting time entertaining lookers who are just curious or are not pre-qualified can be frustrating. Real Estate professionals know how to screen serious buyers. They also have 50-60 hours a week to be available to show your property. Agents usually show and sell inventory from their own company first, generally avoiding FSBO’s because they are not in the MLS and are unwilling to cooperate with agents.

These are just a few reasons to consider using a professional. Other benefits include:

1. C.M.A.- to arrive at a true estimate of value for your property.
2. Sellers Net Sheet - to let you know how much money you will walk away with after close of escrow.
3. Prep For Sale List - to maximize your sale price and minimize market time.
4. Salability Checklist - to expedite the sale.
5. Document Checklist - to avoid delays and reduce problems after close by coordinating the closing with escrow, title, lender, and covering inspections and legal aspects of the transaction. FACT: FSBO’s are three times as likely to go to litigation than agent-involved transactions.

If you still have any questions or concerns, please contact me and inform me of your situation. I would be glad to be of help.


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