Read Buyers’ Minds With These Selling Strategies E-mail
Marketing Your Home
Written by ForSaleByOwner staff   

Read Home Buyers' MindsConditions are aligning for a strong start to the spring home selling market. As you get ready to list, you can tweak the condition and positioning of your house to appeal to what buyers want right now.

And what is that? Keep reading!  Here’s the latest market research, interpreted for your selling success.

How to Buy a Home Directly from the Owner E-mail
The Home Search
Written by   

You don't need a real estate agent to sell a house. You sure don't need one to buy a house.

Historically, about 20 percent of annual house sales are direct purchases between the buyer and the owner, though the definition of 'by owner' varies. 

Buying directly from an owner is just as easy as buying a home with an agent advising you. The main difference is that you will have to tackle several key logistical steps on your own, and you will want to work directly with several experts, just as an agent does. Here's how to have a straightforward, cost-effective transaction with a home seller.

Do-It-Yourself Comparative Market Analysis E-mail
Written by By Joanne Cleaver,   

The ‘comparative market analysis’, or CMA, is the old standby marketing tool for agents trying to win listings.  The agents try to demonstrate the value they bring to the transaction by pulling supposedly proprietary sales numbers from databases run by their associations and the multiple listing service, to assemble a set of recent and pending home sales that can provide context for pricing your house.

Your Credit History Is Spelled FICO E-mail
Your Credit
Written by staff   

Mortgage lenders use a special type of credit score, called the FICO, to gauge your creditworthiness. Here’s what your FICO score is made of and how to manage each component that goes into it, according to Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, contributing editor to Here’s how it breaks down.

Video: How To Price Your Home E-mail
Written by ForSaleByOwner Staff   

"Your For Sale By Owner Coach" video series takes the mystery out pricing a 'by owner' home. "How To Price A Home" will equip you with all of the information that you need to accurately price your home.

What Is Your Appraiser Thinking? Here's What E-mail
Written by Joanne Cleaver   

How do you price a big white box?

That is what Sharon Bagby is thinking as she walks around a five-year-old house in a small subdivision at the edge of a cornfield northeast of Chicago.  The farmhouse is white inside and out: white siding, white interior walls, beige carpet, cream-colored vinyl flooring in the kitchen and bathrooms. A small brass Colonial-style chandelier hangs from the coffered dining room ceiling. The window blinds are white. It’s as generic as generic can be.

And isn’t that a selling point? After all, home magazines and television shows overflow with advice about neutral decorating.

But in the eye of a seasoned appraiser, there’s neutral decorating…and then there’s ‘builder white.’ “It’s all as the builder specified – and that’s not common,” she notes, especially in an era of upgrades and just-like-the-catalog decorating. 

Bagby has been appraising homes for two decades. When she looks at a house, she sees not a home, but a marketable commodity. Exactly how marketable is in the details that she is paid to discover.
Stage the Invisible E-mail
Staging Your Home
Written by Joanne Cleaver   

What you can’t see can sell your house. But how do you stage the invisible?

Scent or odor?

The difference is in the nose of the beholder.

Bright or glaring?

It’s all in what someone sees.

That’s what makes staging bathrooms so difficult: Much of what makes these small rooms appealing just can’t be fixed with traditional staging techniques.


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