Three Points That Will Help a "For Sale by Owner" (FSBO) Sell Their Home in Half the Time

In today’s economy, many homeowners try to enter the real estate market without the help of a broker. As an agent, I have noticed that the main reasons for this may be the price homeowners pay to get their homes sold or simply bad experiences with realtors. Many brokerage firms charge a standard 6% commission, which can turn out to be a lump sum to some homeowners. However, it is important to remember the time and money that homeowners have to invest if they want to sell through for sale by owner.

1. Price your home right

This is the most important part of the process. Be very careful not to overprice your home; overpricing will reduce the buyers’ interest in the property and makes competing homes seem like they are of better value. Overpricing when selling a home is the single biggest reason why many “for sale by owner” (FSBO) home sellers don’t sell their homes successfully.

The best way to price your home is to research the selling price of similar homes that have recently sold in your neighborhood. The easiest way to accurately price your home is to contact your local home appraiser. This will prevent mortgage rejections from happening in the future if you find a potential buyer.

Finally, set your price right under a whole number, such as $349,000 rather than $350,000

2. Market your home correctly

Welcome to the era of the Internet: EXPOSURE, EXPOSURE, EXPOSURE. In today’s market, 92% of buyers search online for their next home. That is in comparison to only 28% looking at print advertisement. We specialize in internet strategies to promote the sale of your home. A couple of places where you could start reaching out to potential buyers are on Zillow.com, ForSaleByOwner.com, FSBO.com, and through social media.

It is very important to write a detailed description of your house, but remember that being simple and to the point is everything. Details like beds/baths, square footage, nearby schools, supermarkets, and your home’s best features are all critical when a buyer is trying to find the perfect fit.

Last but not least, get a yard sign. It is proven that about half the time the person buying your home is referred by a fellow neighbor or friend who lives in the area so make sure everyone in your neighborhood knows you’re selling!

3. Photography and staging

First impression is key. Photography and staging go hand in hand. Make sure that the home’s yard/driveway is uncluttered. Remove parked cars, garbage cans, and bikes. The same thing applies for interior shots. Remember to think of furniture as props and the room as a stage. Take a lot of photos as the more you shoot, the better the odds are that you’ll get some great shots.

You are selling your home. Usually, this is one of your most valuable possessions. It deserves quality. Put some effort into it. It will pay off.

Conclusion

Most “for sale by owners” (FSBO) are willing to cooperate with brokers, usually offering a 3% commission and saving the remaining 3%. The main concern is the time and money a “for sale by owner” (FSBO) has to invest. After paying for advertisement, disrupts family time for showing, keeps the house clean at all hours, hosts open houses every weekend, negotiates with unqualified or bargain-hunting buyers, and finally covers lawyer fees, are “for sale by owners” really saving much? For some homeowners, it is not really worth their time and since 95% of properties are listed with an agent, and 95% of buyers buy something that is listed, it only leaves a “for sale by owner” with a 5% reach. If you played that in Vegas, it wouldn’t be very good odds in today’s market. Happy selling!

How To Sell Your Home FSBO

You decide to sell your home and believe you can handle the selling process. Good for You!

Of course you’re a little nervous and that’s normal. You might stay awake at night wondering how long it is going to take to actually sell this home.

“Can I get my asking price?” You wonder.

Yes it is possible to sell for sale by owner and yes you can get your asking price.

If you followed the guidelines outlined in our Do It Yourself FSBO Tips for sellers you will have your home ready to sell.

So what’s the key to selling a home within a timely manner?

Readiness, Price, Terms and ADVERTISING!

Get your on-line listing and set your advertising budget for an aggressive marketing campaign.

What this means is blasting your home for sale in the newspaper locally and out of town where new buyers are coming from.

Use your on-line listing to direct your potential buyers to in your ads. This will keep your advertising dollars down for each ad, allowing you to advertise twice as much than if you placed a long detailed ad in the newspaper.

Giving you twice the exposure. Not to mention the attention your on-line listing service is attracting for you.

Run your ads for a month, this might even get you a discount with the newspapers. Ask for One!

If you sell your home before the month is over you should get a refund for the time unused.

Exposure is what it takes to get your home noticed.

Price is what will sell it.

If you are selling a high dollar home your best option for a quick sale is to offer assistance to the buyer. Help them with the down payment and your home is sold!

People pay outrageous rents sometimes more than a mortgage would cost.

So the everyday living expenses are easy, it’s the saving of the down payment that holds people back. Take away that problem that holds them back and you’ve got a sale!

If you take an aggressive approach to selling right off the back using the Internet as your main marketing tool you should have an offer on the table within no time.

If you don’t get an offer within the first few weeks reevaluate your price. Consider helping with the down payment by offering a small second mortgage to open the market for more qualified buyers.

Here’s a sample ad you could place in the newspapers utilizing your on-line listing.

$5000 Down 3/2 FSBO

Brandon Fl. No Realtors

[http://www.xxxxxxxx.net/listings/99999.html]

555-555-5555

This short ad will lead all potential buyers to view all the details and photos of your property for sale. Allowing them instant access to learn more about your property before they even call you.

Working for you to Sell itself.

Good Luck and Don’t Give Up!

Can a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Be Successful?

Attempting to sell your home today, on your own, is at best an uphill battle. Understanding the complexities of the market, home pricing, timing, marketing challenges, safety, legal issues and navigating the new TRID, all paint an interesting and challenging scenario for the “For Sale By Owner” (FSBO).

Selling your home on your own in today’s marketplace is akin to winning a championship game without a coach. Can it be done? Possibly. Is it the best you can do? Not Likely.

People desiring to sell their homes on their own typically have their personal reasons for doing so. Usually, it is perceived that one will save money on the sale of their home. While this may appear to be sound thinking at the surface, there are many reasons why this is not necessarily true, especially today. Industry statistics show that a home owner will typically net a higher sale price when utilizing the services of a professional Realtor®.

Let’s start with the TRID. This is an acronym for TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule. In a nutshell… it replaces the familiar HUD with a whole new level of complex rules and procedures that will affect your transaction. You and your buyer will come face-to-face to TRID at closing time. The scope of this new legislation is far beyond the scope of this article, but there are numerous web resources where one can become better educated as to it’s procedures and requirements. Under more ideal circumstances, your Realtor®, Mortgage Loan Officer and the Closing Attorney navigate these waters for you.

How do FSBOs screen potential buyers? Typically they don’t. Most are so anxious to sell that they open their doors to anyone. Most sellers, if they ask at all, do not understand the difference between loan pre-qualification and pre-approval. They have no idea if their “prospective buyer” is even able to secure a sufficient loan to buy their home. They possibly may not even be who they say they are. Frustrated, many will waste a great deal of time with “window-shoppers and tire-kickers.”

Dealing with home inspections, effectively staging the home, preparing the all-important first impression via the presentation of the exterior of the home and landscaping, and knowing what to say to prospective buyers often are areas that cripple a sale. Furthermore, a seller’s emotional involvement with the sale of their home often has detrimental disadvantages. The home seller usually has too much of an emotional bond to their home to remain objective in negotiations.

Most FSBOs do not understand market pricing and often have their home’s price set higher than it should be. Sellers are frequently under the misconception that the selling price of their home is related to their financial needs or to how much they have invested in their property. Not so! They often will miss that precious four-week window when a home is first introduced to the market because of pricing error, poor staging and other issues. Establishing an accurate selling price for market entry is a skill that professionals well understand but novices lack.

Sellers must also be comfortable communicating directly with buyers, their agents, lawyers, home inspection companies, appraisers and loan companies. This area alone stifles most transactions. There are also numerous ways to make legal mistakes. Contracts have specific deadlines that must be managed effectively or sellers can be held in breach of contract. A Real Estate Contract To Buy is a legal document that contains deadlines, specific instructions, clauses and contingencies that are often difficult to understand for the untrained.

Since FSBOs are extremely vulnerable to so many areas that can halt a transaction, many sellers have the experience of seeing their sale disintegrate at or prior to closing because of failure to manage the legal details of the transaction. In fact, the National Association of Realtors®(NAR) has collected data that shows that less than 10% of all FSBO’s actually sell their property that way. Less than 1% of all home sales are FSBOs.

Unless the homeowner is fully prepared for the reality of selling their home on their own, many may quickly realize the need for a trusted professional partner, a Realtor®, who will effectively market their home in a variety of mediums, providing maximum exposure, show it to prospective, well-qualified buyers, negotiate the purchase contract, suggest financing and closing attorneys, oversee the inspections, handle all necessary legal paperwork and monitor the closing. Your Listing Agent can take care of everything you need, from start to close and communicate with you throughout the process.

Is hiring a professional Realtor® to represent your best interests a good idea? You be the judge.

FSBO – What You Should Know About Selling Your Own Home

The key to selling your home yourself is being properly prepared. If you aren’t, your home may remain on the market longer than you expect because you aren’t attracting and getting offers from qualified buyers. And this is where many homeowners become frustrated and start to think about giving up the dream of selling their homes themselves. However, some sellers are very successful at selling their own homes, and you can be one of them.

This report has been especially prepared to assist home sellers like yourself understand the process so you can sell your home quickly and for the price you want. To help you prepare, be aware of the following tips before deciding whether or not this is the right approach for you.

  1. Price your home correctly. Setting the correct asking price is critical. Setting the price too high can be as bad as setting it too low. Home prices are determined by fluctuations in the marketplace, and not by your emotional attachment to your home or what you think your home is worth. To establish a realistic price, compare the price, features, and condition of similar homes in both your neighbourhood and locations where similar homes have sold in the last few months. It is also important to be familiar with the terms of each potential sale. Terms are often as important as price in the current market. Work up a careful budget of your selling costs, and prepare a net proceeds sheet to determine an informed estimate of what you can expect to earn from the sale of your home. Prospective buyers may request a similar analysis of buying costs.
  2. Prepare your home for sale. First impressions are crucial. Ensure that your home makes a positive statement by carefully inspecting all details and viewing it, as objectively as possible, through the eyes of a buyer. Don’t ignore needed repairs and fix-ups: your prospective buyers certainly won’t! Your job is to make sure your home stands out favourably from the competition.
  3. Make sure you have all the necessary legal documentation. There are many important legal contracts and documents which you need to assemble, complete, and understand when selling your home. Below is a partial checklist of forms you will need for prospective buyers and for legal documentation.
    • Mortgage Payoff
    • Loan Application
    • Deposit Receipt
    • Property Profile Fact Sheet
    • Buyer’s Cost Sheet
    • Closing & Settlement
    • Personal Property
    • Exclusion List
    • Property Survey
    • Sellers Statement /Plot Plan of Representation
  4. Market Your Home Effectively. Beyond the sign on your lawn, you need to find effective ways to spread the word that your home is for sale. You can reach local buyers with ads in a newspaper, but you will reach just a small part of the possible market. Be sure to include buyers who may already be working with a realtor. To locate them, notify as many top agents as possible in your market in case their client’s criteria match what your home has to offer. Out-of-town buyers are an important target too, so create a strategy to reach them as well. Above all, be very customer service oriented and make it easy for pre-qualified buyers to view your home. That means making sure that someone is always available to answer the phone, respond promptly to messages, and be ready to give qualified prospects a tour of your home as quickly as possible.
  5. Remain objective when showing your home. Be sure to keep your emotions out of the sale of your home. The best way to do this during a showing is to remain physically in the background. If a prospective buyer says something negative about your home, you’re better off counter-balancing this point of view by calling attention to the positives instead of becoming defensive.
  6. Pre-qualify prospective buyers. Don’t waste time entertaining buyers who cannot afford to buy your home. Research their financial situation with respect to job security, salary, debts, liabilities and credit standing.
  7. Negotiate effectively and knowledgeably. There are a great many details that need to be resolved before a sale is considered final: price, terms, inspections, possession date, and buyer concerns and objections, to name a few. You must fully understand the contract you have drawn up so you can, in turn, explain the details and ramifications to the buyer, and make any necessary amendments to the sale. Have the contract you use thoroughly examined by your real estate attorney. Some real estate brokers may be willing to help you do this. While this is going on, work to maintain the buyer’s interest in your home so it doesn’t wane during negotiations.
  8. Know your buyer. Your objective during negotiations is to control the pace and set the duration. Try to determine what’s motivating potential buyers. Do they need to move quickly? Can they afford to pay the asking price for your home? Answering these questions will give you an advantage in the negotiations: you’ll know what you need to do to get what you want.
  9. Do not move out before you sell. Studies show that selling a vacant home is more difficult than selling one that is occupied. A vacant home looks forlorn, forgotten, and simply unappealing. And it could even cost you money. If you move out before you sell, you’re also letting prospective buyers know that you have a new home and are motivated to sell quickly. That can, of course, give the buyer an advantage at the negotiating table.
  10. Understand why you’re selling, but keep your reasons to yourself. Just as important as understanding your buyer is understanding yourself. Your reasons for selling can affect everything from how you price your home to how much time and money you invest in preparing it for sale. And knowing your motivation helps you determine your priorities: the money you walk away with, how long your property is on the market, or perhaps both. Different goals dictate different strategies. Someone who prefers to sell without a real estate agent to save the commission would indicate that money is a primary considerations (see “How to Assess Your Net Gain” below). Whatever your reasons may be, it is very important to keep them to yourself so you don’t put yourself at a disadvantage during negotiations. If anyone asks why you’re selling, simply tell them that your housing needs have changed.

How to Assess Your Net Gain

To find out whether or not you’ll come out ahead by selling your home yourself, consider that most buyers use real estate agents because it doesn’t cost them anything (the seller pays the agent’s fee). Be cautious: buyers, investors, and speculators who seek out For Sale by Owner properties are usually in search of a bargain. Low-ball offers from these buyers will usually net you a lot less in the long run. Determine for yourself the following:

  1. You need to be as prepared as possible with your marketing, negotiations, evaluations, showings, and all legal matters.
  2. Calculate what it will cost you to effectively market your home and put together all the necessary materials, from the “For Sale” sign to the contracts.
  3. What price will a buyer offer you as a For Sale by Owner, minus the costs identified in number 2 above? Is this net amount higher or lower than the price an experienced agent could net for you minus his/her commission?