So you want to sell your home yourself?


You think you can save money by going FSBO?

(For Sale By Owner, pronounced “FIZZ- bow”)

Ok, let’s run through what you are going to have to do:

Are you prepared to pay up front costs of marketing and advertising? Agents that belong to their local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) network to hundreds, if not thousands, of other agents in their region to expose your property to. And those agents, in turn, have their own networks of family, friends, past clients and business acquaintances to tell about the property. MLS listings in most regions feed into numerous online portals as well. This means your home will be picked up by thousands of Web sites.

Show me the Money!
Recent studies have shown that 92% of buyers search online for a home. That is in comparison to only 28% looking at print newspaper ads. Most real estate agents have an Internet strategy to promote the sale of your home. Do you?
whos at door

Do you REALLY know who’s at your door, wanting to look at your home? Do they have an agent? Have they been approved for a loan?

You’ll have a friend there to show buyers your house if you can’t? Hmm…talk to your insurance company about that one…


So you think you’ve got that covered, huh? Ok, say whatever you are doing to get exposure brings you some buyers that want to look at your house. Does a real estate agent represent them? Because good agents will make sure their buyers have talked to a lender and are pre-approved for a loan. That means they are ready, willing and able to purchase your property.

No? You’ve got somebody who wants to see your home anyway, so you will show it to them. Are you able to consistently be available to show prospective buyers your home during the day and evenings, 7 days a week? Your boss is just going to LOVE you constantly taking the time off from work to do that.

And the buyer does not have an agent, and you have no idea if they have the financial wherewithal to buy, but you’ll be there to show them anyway. Do you know this person? If not, do you have an idea of where they work, who they are, identification? Nah, you’ll let them in anyway. Really? How do you know that they aren’t casing the property to rob later, or worse? Good agents know who their buyers are up front, they have verified them through their own process and the lender has all the tax returns, identification and work history on file to qualify them for a loan. Do you? Not worried about that? OK… say you have a buyer without an agent who makes an offer on your property. Do you know the legal rules that govern real estate transfers in your state, such as who must sign the papers, who can conduct the actual transaction, and what to do if and when encumbrances are discovered that slow down the transfer of ownership?
Do you even know what documentation is part of the process? Do you know what legal paperwork is required to construct a legal sale and if there are any state-mandated disclosures as to the physical condition of your house? Do you carry Errors and Omissions Insurance to protect yourself (and you as your own client) should problems arise in the contracts? pileof papaer

Back to saving money… Realize that the main reason buyers look at FSBOs is because they also believe they can save the real commission. The seller and buyer can’t both save the commission. Do you realize that the commission is actually paid out of the proceeds the buyer gives you upon closing? Yep, that is money you are not going out of pocket for. Still think that you could net more if you didn’t pay a commission and use an agent? What would it cost you time wise and monetarily to perform everything discussed above?

Fact is, statistics show that selling your home with the assistance of a professional real estate agent will garner you a higher profit, enough to cover the commission as well as put more money in your pocket. According to the National Association of Realtor’s 2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the average nationwide FSBO sales price was $174,900, while the average price for a home represented by an agent was $215,000, a difference of $40,100.

Bottom Line? Before you decide to take on the challenges of selling your house on your own, sit with a real estate professional in your marketplace and see what they have to offer.

You can pull your tooth out with a string and a doorknob, so why go to a Dentist?