Selling your home for sale by owner doesn’t need to be tricky. Here are the steps and tips for selling your home without a real estate agent.
How Do I Sell My House FSBO?
1. Understand FSBO Pros and Cons
Before venturing into the housing market on your own, you should understand what you might have to gain or lose from selling for sale by owner. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of FSBO:
- Lower commission fees – For traditional real estate transactions, you’d need to pay both the seller’s and buyer’s agents commission. With FSBO transactions, you’ll only be responsible for paying the buyer’s agent, which can halve your buyer procurement fee.
- Expertise – Who knows your home better than you, the homeowner? When it comes to selling prospective buyers on the best features your home has to offer or beloved spots in the neighborhood, no one can provide the inside scoop like you can.
- Control – While some might find having the transactional responsibility of selling a house daunting, for others, having the final say is a huge plus. When you sell your home FSBO, you have the last word on the listing, sale, and of course – who gets your home.
- Attachment issues – As much as your love for your home can help you pitch your neighborhood and property, it can also serve as a detriment if your rose-colored glasses get in the way. Say you’re set on certain decor for staging or unique design choices that others may not love the way you do – you could be driving away buyers with a bad first impression.
- Lack of resources and know-how – Unless you’re a practicing real estate agent or you have close friends or family who are, chances are you won’t have access to the same resources that selling agents do. This can include marketing, preexisting networks and access to market data. As a non-agent, you’ll also lack the real estate knowledge that selling agents have on pricing strategy, legal, appraisals, lenders and more.
- Time – FSBO is a huge time commitment and will practically serve as a second job. From repairs, home improvement projects and staging, to handling each and every transaction, if you think you’ll be spreading yourself thin trying to sell FSBO, it may not be the best idea.
2. Set A Fair Price
When it comes to pricing your home, it’s usually better to list too low rather than too high. Low prices will get you more offers, which can always be negotiated. Not to mention, more offers on your home will drive the price up.
But if you’re particularly concerned about listing at the perfect price range, consider conducting a comparative market analysis, or a CMA, to better understand how people with homes similar to your own priced their properties.
3. Prepare Your House
This includes everything from renovations and cleaning to relocating any pets and staging your house. Whether it’s for online photos or an open house, you’ll want to make sure your home is looking its very best. It’s also important to keep landscaping in mind to maximize curb appeal.
4. Invest In Marketing and Advertising
In our digital age, first impressions are everything – even online. So it may be a good idea to invest in a photographer or a good camera to capture high-quality photos of your home and yard for online listings.
You might also want to consider posting an ad to a neighborhood bulletin or newsletter, or buying some exposure on social media.
5. Act Like A Professional
Some buyers are hesitant to work with FSBO sellers due to the risk of being met with a lack of professionalism or real estate etiquette – combat this by really adopting your role as a real estate agent. Be prompt with responding to calls and emails, be accommodating with your schedule and showings, and be open minded about your home and any criticisms or concerns buyers may have.
6. Ensure You Have Qualified Buyers
Real estate can put you in a vulnerable space: opening up your home to strangers. Be prepared and diligent in order to stay safe and protect your things – make sure to hide or store your valuables away from prying eyes, and make it known that you keep a detailed record of those who tour your home. This will discourage casual wanderers or anyone without the purest of intentions.
7. Hire A Real Estate Attorney
To be on the safe side, you’ll probably want to hire a real estate attorney to review all of your paperwork and documents. In some states, you may even be legally required to employ a real estate attorney.
8. Don’t Rule Out An Agent
Although you might be set on selling FSBO, make sure you only do so if it works best for you. If the cons far outweigh the pros or selling FSBO just doesn’t fit into your current lifestyle, hiring a real estate agent can be well worth the extra cash.
The Bottom Line
Selling your home for sale by owner can be challenging but not impossible. It all depends on your lifestyle, resources and will to get things done. We’re here to provide you all the tips and best practices for selling your home on your own.