You may have noticed that a quick internet search for reasons WHY you should sell your home by-owner comes back with a host of articles detailing why you SHOULD NOT sell by-owner. While some of these articles bring up good points, we respectfully and strongly feel selling by-owner is a great option for the right seller in the right market.
First, let’s briefly address why you SHOULD NOT try to sell your own house and the gaps in those arguments.
Limited buyer pool: This untruth may be the most commonly crowed argument against selling by-owner but if you peel back the reasons it’s pretty easy to debunk. The argument behind this lies in the fact that traditionally by-owner marketed homes do not make it into the MLS (Multiple Listing Service: 80% of homes that sell are marketed on the MLS) followed by the claim of poor internet exposure and a buyer’s agent reluctance to show clients the by-owner seller’s house. Let’s take these point by point:
- Are by-owner homes on the MLS? Yes, they can be. Our product Flat Fee MLS lists your home on your local MLS allowing agents and buyers alike to find you with greater ease.
- Are by-owner homes at a digital disadvantage? Not at all. Listing with our by-owner service will also place your home on major on-line real estate search websites such as Xome, Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com and more .* On these sites there is effectively NO DIFFERENCE to a buyer between a by-owner listing and a standard agent-listed home.
- Will buyer’s agents not want to show clients your home? That is becoming less and less of a problem. More and more buyers are making the efforts to find their own future homes and they are using the Internet to do so. List by-owner and don’t be surprised to receive inquiries from unrepresented buyers. Also, if you wish to sweeten the pot for agents you can always specify a buyer’s agent commission, but such a thing is not always necessary.
Lack of tools. The argument that you don’t have the necessary tools at your hands to sell a home is not just silly, it is completely untrue. Our Sellers Checklist arms sellers with the information and steps required to successfully prepare a home for listing, list, show, negotiate, and close. Once you’ve drawn in a prospective qualified buyer, contact a lawyer who specializes in residential real estate transactions to go over the contracts and fine points. You will also want to select a title and escrow company (providing your buyer doesn’t have strong feelings on this point). Everything you need to sell securely and with confidence is at your fingertips.
You won’t be taken “seriously.” How seriously the buying public takes you is directly related to how your home is presented and merchandised. A serious home is taken seriously by buyers. By this we mean as long as the home is priced well, presented positively but fairly, and the sellers are reasonable in the selling process (agree to showings, select a date to review offers, hold to your communication commitments, allow reasonable inspections, etc.) buyers will respond positively.
Now that we have those out of the way, let’s discuss who SHOULD give this a go.
By-owner selling works best in seller’s markets. Seller’s markets occur where inventory of a real estate market where inventory (based on available homes for sale) is small in number compared to buyers. Typically prices climb in these markets and well-priced homes go for more than asking price. If you are selling in a market where homes spend little time on the market and multiple offer scenarios are commonplace trying to sell by-owner can work in your favor.
A by-owner seller is a driven, independent do-it-yourselfer. We will never hide this fact: selling your home yourself is more work than selling with an agent, but if you aren’t afraid to roll up your sleeves and do a little work you can reap some serious rewards in the form of saved cash. If you think you’re ready, it’s time to explore your options. Check out our handy FSBO Seller’s Checklist and be sure to check out our Flat Fee MLS listing package.
If you’re driven to sell your home yourself and without an agent, this is the perfect way to do it. If you later change your mind or the results are not satisfactory when you go it alone, we do also offer an agent-supported, zero commission, full-service Super Seller package.