Now that we are officially in a Seller’s Market – at least in the Columbus suburbs such as Dublin OH – you may be tempted to sell your home by yourself. Why would you pay a 3% real estate commission to a Realtor to list your house, if you can get a contract within a few days?
For many For Sale By Owners (FSBOs) the primary motivation is “saving” money. FSBO’s simply don’t believe that a Realtor will add any value to the sale.
This is shortsighted. There are many reasons why you should NOT sell your home For Sale by Owner …
The Value of a Realtor
When you sell your property it’s not so much about saving money, but about getting the best and highest value for your house and getting the sale closed as quickly as possible. That’s were a professional real estate agent is invaluable.
Did you know that most FSBOs end up listing their house with an agent after it has been sitting on the market for a few months without an offer?
Here are 5 reasons why you should hire a Realtor right away.
Many homes sell quickly in today’s market, because of the exposure they get from professional marketing. You need a realtor who has buyers that are looking for a home so your house can get the exposure it needs. The easiest way to find these buyers agents is on the MLS (multiple listing service).
I always set up alerts on the MLS, in the areas where my buyers are looking for homes. If a new listing hits the MLS, I am the first one to know!
If you list as a FSBO and put a sign in the yard, you still need to answer the phone or respond to emails when an interested buyer inquires about your property. When you list your home on the MLS, this is the job of your Realtor.
Just a few weeks ago I tried to show a FSBO home in Dublin that was on the market for more than 2 months. No one returned my phone calls nor my emails. Needless to say, we never saw the inside of this house.
If you can’t get into the house, it’s hard to sell it.
Ultimately, a Realtor listed the house. It went into contract within a week.
Negotiating the Price
Most FSBOs have an emotional connection to their home. It is impossible for them to objectively negotiate. If the offer is low, most sellers are offended. Without an agent rationalizing the offer, it may be hard to agree on a sale price.
An experienced agent acts as your third party negotiator. Your agent knows what sells in the current market, and when you may have to concede.
Most importantly, your real estate agent is not emotionally connected to the transaction. She will know how to counter that low ball offer and get a higher purchase price for you.
Handling (Multiple) Offers
Do you know the best strategy for handling multiple offers?
Your Realtor certainly will know.
There are different ways to exploit this situation, in order to get best and highest offer on a property.
It is important to ask the right questions when an offer comes in. A few weeks ago I received an offer on a new listing just days after it went on the market. The early offer gave the seller much excitement. But I advised him to hold off on signing the contract, because it was missing an approval letter.
An immediate offer may tempt a FSBO to sign the contract and take the home off the market.
Instead, I requested a bank approval to see if the buyer was actually qualified to get financing. As it turned out, the prospective buyer did not qualify for a loan and could not buy the home. Since we never took the home off the market, we continued to have showings and two days later received 3 more offers on this property.
Closing the Transaction
Your Realtor will manage every aspect of closing the sale of your house. And that’s not an easy task.
Are you prepared to do it as a FSBO? Do you have enough time and know what’s required?
Once you accept an offer, here is what your Realtor has to take care of:
- manage contract time lines for contingencies
- deal with property inspection and potential remedies
- negotiate the request to remedy to keep the most money for you (the seller)
- handle the appraisal
- deal with a title company for lien payoffs
- schedule the closing with all parties
- blowing up the deal because of last minute changes
- keep the seller’s and buyer’s emotions in check
Why Buyer’s Agents May Not Call
Trust me. It is a lot of work to see a transaction successfully through to its end and finally close it.
This is also the major reason why buyer’s agents prefer not to work with FSBOs. If they go in contract, the buyer’s agent has to do the work for both sides, but only gets paid for one.
In today’s sellers market it makes a lot of sense to hire a real estate agent to list your house instead of going on your own. You will get a smooth and hassle free transaction, you will not waste your time on the details of the sale, and you will ultimately get more money for your property in a shorter period of time.
Call me, if you plan to sell your house in 2013! Let’s review the values of recent home sales in your neighborhood and determine how quickly you can sell your property for a great price.
Call or text me anytime at (614) 975-9650.