Seller Tip - Use a Realtor or For Sale by Owner



There are pros and cons to doing anything yourself. You weigh factors such as your expertise, the enjoyment of doing a certain task, and the cost savings of doing it yourself (DIY) vs. hiring a professional.

Are for-sale-by-owners successful? The answers may lie in research from the National Association of REALTORS®. According to the most recent Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the share of home sellers or FSBO's who sold their home without the assistance of a real estate agent was only nine percent.

Most FSBO sellers don't do anything to market their homes, whereas most real estate professionals advertise listings on multiple listing services and through other means. This could be a real disadvantage for FSBO sellers because 92 percent of buyers use the Internet to shop for a home and half use mobile applications on their phones to look at listings.

So where do FSBO get buyers? Not from testing the open market. Forty-four percent of FSBO sellers knew the buyer prior to home purchase, and about 15 percent of FSBO sellers were approached directly by buyers.

The number one reason why FSBO sellers don't want to list their homes is real estate fees which can typically be up to 7% on 1st 100k and 2.5% on balance.  But, by not testing their homes in the open market they're losing more money than the fees.

As a seller you should realize that buyers have changed. Today's buyers are older, more savvy, and have better credit than in the past. The typical first-time buyer is 31 years of age, while repeat buyers are 53.

They expect to occupy their homes for approximately 12 years, so they plan to buy very carefully. In fact, more than half of buyers said finding the right home was the most difficult part of buying a home. The fact that you're an experienced homeowner may not be as big an advantage as it once would have been.

Last, FSBO sellers miss the advantages of having their own agents. When you FSBO, you have to do everything the real estate agent would do -- show the home, negotiate, advertise, and keep the transaction moving forward.

Those are just a few things to consider as you decide whether to list it or FSBO.

Information obtained from NAR