For sale by owner: Homeowners ditching brokers. Now that’s a headline we love to see. CNNMoney used it in an October 11 story that told the ForSaleByOwner.com success story of Tara and Brent Anderson of Dallas. With the housing market recovering, more and more homeowners are selling their homes on their own and saving thousands of dollars in broker commissions.
“We have no experience selling but we felt it just makes common sense,” Tara Anderson told CNNMoney. “We could give the money away, or pocket it.”
Just one glitch in the story: CNNMoney quotes NAR’s oft-invoked (yet inaccurate) claim that homes sold by agents “usually fetch much higher prices.” Our research among successful home sellers indicates that’s not true. ForSaleByOwner.com customers on average realize 97 percent of their asking price, slightly more than agent sales. To top it off, our customers’ average sale price for the last six months was $247,500, nearly 18 percent ahead of NAR’s 2012 general seller average of $210,000.
With the real estate market percolating and interest rates low, now’s a great time to consider listing your home through ForSaleByOwner.com and realizing that financial gain that sellers who use agents won’t enjoy.
As you get started, keep in mind that new listings get the most traffic during the first 30 days. Pricing is critical, so before you list find out what similar homes in your area are going for and see how yours stacks up. It’s also a good idea to hire an appraiser who can evaluate your property, identify potential problems, and prepare a detailed report on the estimated value of your home before you list it. Here are 6 steps to price your home right from the start.