If you have the extra time and you’re willing to do some work, being a successful FSBO, a For Sale By Owner, can be achieved. This article lays out 7 tips, from pricing to negotiating, that will help guide your way through the process.
When the time is right for you to sell your home, you’ll be put in the position to make many decisions. One of the first ones is deciding whether or not you’re going to hire a full-service or “discount” real estate agent. The other option is to go it alone and become a FSBO, a For Sale By Owner.
Being a successful FSBO means a commitment of time and effort on your part. However, all that work will pay off when you DON’T have to give up 3% to 6% of your sales price to an agent in commission fees. That can add up to a lot of extra equity in your pocket.
Here are 7 of our top tips for selling your own home.
What Do FSBOs Do?
Accurately Pricing Your Home
Determining your listing price is a very important part of the puzzle. Price it too high and buyers will shun you. Price it too low, and you’ll be left wondering how much money you left on the table.
To price your home, you need to do some research. But don’t worry all you need is available online, for free. Visit home listing sites such as:
These sites contain home for sale listings that you can use to set your price. Find comparable homes in your area or neighborhood, and write down what the homes have sold for recently, or what the homes for sale prices are.
Heck, sometimes agents send you postcards saying, “Just Sold!”, or “Just Listed.” You can use that information, too.
The MLS: Get On It!
The MLS, or Multiple Listing Service, is a national database of home for sale listings. It used to only be available to Realtors and real estate agents. But now, anyone can list a home for sale on the MLS. Specialty real estate services, such as Fizber.com, sell flat-fee MLS listing packages at very affordable prices.
Over 90% of homebuyers begin their home search online; therefore having your home listed on the MLS is definitely a “must do.”
Promote Your Property
Once you get on the MLS, you’ve got to market your property for sale. Get signs, brochures made, share it on your Facebook page, tweet about it, use Craig’s List, send emails to your friends and family. Get as creative as you possibly can!
Your Home Is Special—Sell It That Way!
When writing about your home in listing ads and marketing materials, you have to include the basics such the price, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, kitchen details, what upgrades you’ve recently made, etc.
But try and go beyond the factual stuff. Get descriptive and sell a lifestyle to buyers. Tell them how great the greenbelt view will look when they bbq on the new deck. Or how beautiful the sunsets are from the many walking trails in the surrounding area.
Get Prepped To Sell
Before you show your home to potential buyers, you’ve got to put all of your home’s potential on display. That means making a great first impression by fixing all repairs, doing a thorough cleaning, decluttering and depersonalizing the interior, cranking up the curb appeal, and staging the home like a pro. For more details on prepping your own home for sale, click here (LINK).
Once your home is ready to show, you're the one who has to show it off! This means being available at all hours, including evenings and weekends.
Remember, being your own home’s tour guide can be tricky: you want to give buyers detailed info about the property, but try and be objective as possible, and don’t take any negative comments too personally.
Once all the hoopla of showings and tours is over, you’ll hopefully have an offer or two. This is a good time to look into hiring a real estate attorney. They can help you with negotiating counter offers, and they’ll help you review all the documents and contracts related to the closing of your home. It’s not free, but less than paying a commission and it’s more than worth it to cover yourself from a legal standpoint.