You are ready to put your home on the market, but you hate the idea of agents earning 6% of the sales price of your home. As you research your options, you read a lot about selling a home on your own (FSBO) and begin considering this option in order to save on fees.
However, before you do, you should understand what you will be required to do, the true cost of a FSBO sale, and the odds of success. You should also look closely at a lesser known option that can save you thousands, provide you with full real estate services, and dramatically increase your odds of a successful sale.
What You Will Need To Do
Selling a home requires more than listing your home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and sticking a sign in your front yard. Here are some things potential FSBO sellers need to consider before going this route.
- Price Your Home Correctly: You will need to price your home so that you do not try to sell too high, thus eliminating buyers from your potential market pool, but also not too low so that you don’t leave money on the table that could be in your pocket. Understanding how to determine your home’s value is tricky, and online valuation tools are often inaccurate.
- Be Available During the Day, Evening, and on Weekends: Real estate agents field calls from buyers and give showings 7 days a week and during a wide range of hours. FSBO sellers need to be available when a buyer wants to see a home. If your hours are limited, you will be limiting your ability to sell the home.
- Understand Marketing: It is important that buyers know your house is for sale. You will need to find a way to get your home listed on the MLS and major online sites. You will also need to worry about signs, brochures, ads, photos, and social media in a way that looks professional and reaches your target audience.
- Find Qualified Buyers: Not everyone that calls about your home is actually qualified to buy it. Real estate agents know how to identify the lookers from the buyers. If you don’t know how to do this, you will waste a lot of time and energy. You may even waste money if you have to take time off of work to show your home to someone that will never buy.
- Handle Negotiations: Once someone puts in an offer on your home, you will need to be able to negotiate on the price, as well as on other aspects of the offer such as contingencies. It is important that you find a way for the offer to be the best it can be for you. It is also important that you keep your emotions out of the mix. Many homeowners find it difficult to hear negative comments about the home they love, often leading them to poor negotiations. Poor negotiations can often lead to the loss of a sale.
- Working With Other Realtors: Your home is most likely going to sell when a buyer’s agent brings a buyer to your home. You will spend several hours a week talking with realtors that want to represent you as a listing agent. Be sure to include this time as part of your weekly schedule when determining if you can sell on your own.
- Create Legal Paperwork: The sale of a home is a legal process that requires specific paperwork worded in specific ways. You will also need to know what disclosures are necessary for the buyer. If your paperwork is not in order, the sale can be voided, leaving you with the cost of a resale and/or court costs.
True Cost of a FSBO Sale
Many articles touting the FSBO process suggest that selling on your own is a cheap alternative to using an agent. Although it is less expensive, do not be fooled into thinking it is free. Here are some costs associated with selling a home on your own.
- Listing on MLS and other online sites: $500 to $1000
- Signs and other marketing materials: $250 or more
- Photography and home staging: $400 or more
- Legal paperwork: $600 or more
- 40+ hours of time for marketing, phone calls, home showings, negotiations, and other agent duties
- Other miscellaneous costs and hours
The Odds of a Successful Sale
Of course, the purpose of putting your home up for sale is to actually get your home sold. That’s the biggest problem with a FSBO sale. The most current statistics from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), shows that 88% of FSBO homes do not sell and that FSBO sales have been in decline for the past 12 years.
This means that, as a seller, you may end up paying several thousand dollars in fees to sell on your own, only to have your home sit on the market for months. Then, when you cannot wait any longer, you will end up signing with an agent. All the money you spent will be lost.
The Flat Fee, Full Service Alternative
If you don’t think percentage-based fees are the right way, but now realize that FSBO is not a good option, what should you do? Take a look at the lesser known flat fee, full service option offered by Recadia.
Recadia offers all the services you’d get with a traditional broker without a commission tied to the price of your home. For a flat fee of $3,000, you will get:
- Agents that give you full services from listing to marketing to showing to negotiations to closing so that you don’t have to do the work yourself
- Fantastic communication allowing you to know where the sale is at all times
- Better odds for a successful sale of your home
To learn more about Recadia’s flat fee, full service model, you can read How Recadia’s Flat Fee, Full Service Real Estate Model Can Save You Thousands of Dollars on Real Estate Commissions. If you have other questions or want to sign up now, please call Recadia at (214) 281-8500. We would be happy to discuss your specific situation with you and show you how we can sell your home quickly, with little hassle, and put more money in your pocket.