General Question

skfinkel's avatar

How well does selling a house by owner really work?

Asked by skfinkel (13478points) July 9th, 2011

Does it take much longer by owner rather than realtor? I would list it on the FSBO, but does that really get the same coverage as homes listed by real estate companies?

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2 Answers

chyna's avatar

We have had my mom’s house up for sale by owner and have advertised on that site for 2 months now. I’ve had 170 people that have looked at the ad so far and about 12 people have looked at it. We have not sold it yet and I’m not sure how to judge how much or how little a real estate agent would push it. I do know that the three houses I have bought over the years, I have used a real estate agent, but I have done all the foot work, looked at the real estate magazines and pictures on the internet and found my own houses.

choreplay's avatar

You probably need to take an all or nothing attitude. Either go with a realtor all the way or settle into selling it yourself. I may not be a good judge as I know my way around a real estate deal but there is a lot to it.

I learned something the last house I sold as I tried FSBO, but thought I could get some realtors to participate for a 3% if they brought me a buyer but they snubbed their nose at me and my house. Even the realtor I had done business with for years (won’t be anymore though).

Your house has to be in the right condition and order to sell. A half way fixed up house brings a different type of buyer and a much lower price bracket. You get panelized to the maximum price it would take to fix it up plus some extra discounting.

You have to have it priced right. Not only priced right but you have to understand your target market. For instance if houses in your area are selling mostly to out of town buyers advertise on craigslist, if the buyers are local stick with the local news papers.

It might seems odd but I exit interview anyone and everyone that has looked at a house I am selling. What did they like, what did they not like, so on. I have received a mountain of useful information including what they would have paid for it (told from the perspective of when the exchange is done and this is what they would have done). Ask enough people and you will get a very realistic perspective of what you can get for your house.

You have to have a standard sales contract on hand so when you do have a buyer wanting to make an offer you can execute a deal.

Your questions: “Does it take much longer by owner rather than realtor?” It really shouldn’t if it is done right. There is a big group of buyers out there looking for the FSBO deals knowing the price is lower. Remember though, the seller thinks he’s going to pocket the realtor’s fee and the buyer thinks he’s going to benefit from no realtors fee. Good rule of thumb as far as I’m concerned is split the benefit down the middle and share it.

“I would list it on the FSBO, but does that really get the same coverage as homes listed by real estate companies?” You will probably get better coverage if it is placed with a realtor but only if fully with a realtor. Any additional coverage is good coverage if you’re going FSBO so ya do it. Try to figure out if your potential buyers (the ones looking at it) fit some demographic pattern and how to get it in front of them. Hope I haven’t muddied the water with too much information, good luck!!!

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