Selling Your House on Your Own May Cost You Money
Deciding to sell your home is a big decision. After you decide to sell, you will make many more decisions along the way including whether you should work with a real estate agent or brave the world of FSBO – For Sale By Owner. While a vast majority of people use a real estate agent, some sellers believe that they can “save” the real estate commission by selling themselves. A recent study by Collateral Analytics* concludes that sellers that sell their home without an agent don’t actually save anything, and in some cases, they actually lose money. So why would a seller without an agent net less money and why should you use a real estate agent?
Pricing errors can be very costly.
Today’s buyers are well informed and market savvy. They typically research and watch the market for months before they actually begin to look at homes. If your home is priced too high, they will skip right over it. Real estate agents know the market and have been in the homes that have recently sold (or are for sale) in your area. They have first-hand knowledge of your competition instead of just relying on internet photos and information.
They are also well aware of buyer demand, decorating trends, and most importantly, are objective in pricing a house. You do not want to “guess” at a price to sell. If it’s priced too low, you are leaving “money on the table”. If it’s priced too high, it will stay on the market longer, and the cold, hard truth is that the longer a house is on the market, the lower the eventual selling price will be.
Marketing is Important.
Marketing your home for sale is more than just putting a sign in your front yard or listing it on one website. Developing an effective marketing strategy is crucial. Real estate agents have access to all of the latest marketing tools, and are able to cast a wider net through their MLS, Relocation departments, national and local referral networks, and websites allowing them to market to a much larger buyer population and enlarging the buyer pool. If more buyers see a home, you have an increased chance of capturing a higher selling price.
Agents also know what buyers look for when viewing a home and have the expertise to showcase your home in the best light. They are staging experts which could bring you more money, and they are able to suggest pre-marketing improvements that will help you sell faster, as well as, having suggestions for contractors, etc. if needed.
Negotiating Ability is Crucial.
Sellers need to be represented by a professional agent trained to negotiate real estate contracts. Many sellers do not realize all of the negotiations and the “project management” that needs to happen related to disclosures, home inspections and repairs, municipal requirements/tests, appraisals, and settlement coordination that must occur between contract and closing. Leave these challenges to your agent as your time is better spent dealing with the details of moving and other important items to you and your family.
The findings of the study revealed that FSBO’s tend to sell for lower prices than comparable home sales in a variety of market areas with the average price nearly 6% lower for those that sold by owner. In most cases, this covers your commission and save you hours of work and stress! Trust us when we say, let us do the work and use a real estate agent.