The process of selling a house can be stressful and tiring at best. If all the real estate stars align, you may find it easy to sell your home – minimal or no renovations needed, get your asking price (or close to it) and no difficulty scheduling showings or getting ahold of your realtor. But for most people, selling a home is a lengthy and difficult journey – lasting weeks or months, depending on the interest and the market. Selling a house without a real estate agent is one way homeowners can try to lower the cost of selling their home.
Selling a home by owner has its own challenges, of course. One of the biggest downsides of selling a home yourself instead of hiring a real estate agent is the simple fact that realtors will take care of much of the marketing for you. They’ll list your home online, in printed publications and maybe even with fliers. They plan and facilitate open house events and showings. But in the end, the standard real estate agent takes a commission of around six percent of the sale price. If you need the money from your house’s sale, or simply don’t want to part with that extra amount, there are ways to list your home as “FSBO,” the catchy acronym meaning For Sale By Owner.
Tips For Selling a House Without a Real Estate Agent
– Know the Price
One of the first things you need to do before putting your home up FSBO is know the value and appropriate price for your house on the current market. Do an honest evaluation of your home. What major improvements are needed in the next few years? How old is the roof? Are there outdated interiors? Is the paint fresh? Are you willing to leave the appliances? You may even consider hiring a professional to give you an assessment and cost estimate on your home.
– Be Ready to Market
Like we said before, one of the major things that real estate agents do is market your home. Without a realtor, all of this will fall on you. From putting up a “for sale” sign in your front yard to putting listings online, you’ll need to know the ins and outs of marketing a house. You will want to host an open house or two, put up fliers on community bulletin boards and list your home on Craigslist. Another key thing you should consider is finding a broker who will list your home on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) for a flat fee. Also, good photos are critical to successfully marketing your home. If you aren’t confident in your skills, pay a professional.
– Know the Laws
Since you won’t have a professional to review all the contract and sale laws in your state and area, you’ll need to read up on them yourself. It’s also wise to have a real contract lawyer draw up the contract when it’s time to sign. It may seem like a lot of individual professionals to hire, but the cost of making a mistake and facing legal ramifications is
– Show Your House
Perhaps everyone’s least favorite part of selling a home – cleaning and staging your home and showing it. Without a realtor, you’ll also be responsible for fielding text messages, phone calls and emails to schedule a showing for potential buyers. Try to be as flexible as you can in showings – though this, too, is more difficult than it would be for a realtor, since this isn’t your full-time job.
– Distance Your Emotions
You’ll need to have a critical eye of your own home in order to stage and prepare it, as well as to accept any criticisms or requests potential buyers voice. It’s common in the negotiation stage – when buyers are trying to get you to lower your asking price – for them to list shortcomings or problems with your home. You’ll have to be ready to hear their critiques and take a balanced perspective.
– Be Prepared to Work
Selling a home is work – if it wasn’t, there would be no realtors in existence! Be ready to work hard to sell your house. It likely won’t happen overnight.
Setting out on the FSBO market can be daunting, but with some research and willingness to work hard, you can succeed at it. And, if you are in need of selling your home quickly and painlessly, consider a cash buyer like Ben Buys Indy Houses. We can help you sell your home in a week and ensure that you have the cash in your hands quickly and without any need to do renovations.
Contact Ben if you’d like to learn more about what we could offer you!