For Sale by Owner Real Estate Tips

A Real Estate Agent’s Advice 

A real estate agent may ask you to do some things that you really don’t want to do to in order to get you moved into your new home as quickly as possible.  

When real estate agents advise you about what you can do to make the transaction work, they are acting as part coach and part business consultant. If you find the house you love and want to “sleep on” the decision for a few days, the agent knows that you run the risk of losing the house. If you are inclined to complicate your offer with clauses that may make the contract unattractive to the sellers, the agent may ask you to consider some modifications. Should you call the week before the closing with an attack of “buyer’s remorse”, your agent knows the cure. Following your real estate agent’s suggestions will increase your chances for a successful move! 

Are You Curious? 

Perhaps you have no plans to buy or sell a home right now, but you are curious about your possibilities. Real estate professionals can answer any questions you may have about the complexities of a real estate transaction. We can provide you with information to help you make a decision. 
Use a professional to discuss the local real estate market and help you determine whether it is a good time for you to buy or sell. If you are a first-time buyer, you may have questions about legal descriptions, fair housing laws or sources of financing. You may be curious about how sales prices are set. 
A real estate agent’s job is diverse, and the best agents are excellent sources of information. Finding the right real estate agent is like finding the right physician. The help of a professional can help satisfy your curiosity.  

Finding Buyers 

When a home owner tries to sell “By Owner”, they basically use two techniques to get the word out–a plastic sign from the local hardware store and classified ads in the local newspaper. When a seller lists their home with the professional real estate agent, however, a very sophisticated process begins in order to make sales happen. 

Real estate agents have a backlog of prospective buyers for the homes in their market. Through the Multiple Listing Service, the agent cooperates with other brokers in the area who will show your home to their prospective buyers. Professional real estate agents also combine direct mail, telephone calls, and specialized advertising techniques and media, such as the Internet, to reach the sales market. In this way we create activity on our listings that help them to sell quickly–and for top dollar. 

For Sale by Owner 

The virtue of self-reliance is as American as baseball and apple pie–except if you are trying to sell your own home. Here such a “virtue” can cost you time, effort–and possibly money. 

The overwhelming majority of homes that sell are listed with a real estate agent, so you will be going against significant odds if you decide to sell your own home. The experience of a real estate professional may get you a better price and help you to avoid all the “little” things that can go wrong in a real estate transaction. 

The desire to “save” the commission on a property is the reason most people decide not to work with a real estate agent. Prospective buyers who look for properties that are “For Sale By Owner” (FSBOs) are also wanting to avoid the commission–and to get a less-than-market-value deal. However, nothing is saved in the majority of FSBOs. Listing your home with a real estate professional can save you money, spare you the inconvenience of showing your home, and save you the time you would spend talking to buyers who could not qualify for a loan. 

Listing Presentations 

The listing presentation is the first step most sellers take when they are looking for a real estate professional to market their home. They communicate what they expect from the real estate agent who will list their home, and the agent explains their marketing strategy, including pricing recommendations, advertising, and any special programs they or their companies offer. 

A good listing presentation takes careful planning. A written market analysis will help you get a clear idea of local market conditions. Many real estate agents will include a marketing plan, as well as suggestions on how to make sure that your home shows well and is accessible to agents. If you are talking to several companies, resist the temptation to go with the person who quotes you the highest price for your house. Look for an agent who is well prepared, professional, and has the best ideas. The most successful transactions involve careful collaboration between the sellers and the real estate agent. 

Selling Your Own Home 

The concept of “do-it-yourself” is “as American as apple pie”. While this approach can pay dividends in many endeavors, it can cost you unnecessary time and money when you are trying to sell your home. The overwhelming majority of homes that sell are listed with a real estate sales professional. In most markets, over 90% of the homes sold are listed with a real estate agent. 

Most people try to sell their own home in order to save the commission, while those who tend to buy homes that are “for Sale by Owner” homes also want to save! Rarely does anyone actually save money by selling their own home. By listing your home with a real estate agent you will save the cost of advertising your home, the inconvenience of showing, and all the time you might spend talking to people who couldn’t qualify to buy. Real estate agents can help you get top dollar for your home and are experienced in all of the complex legal details involved in transferring title. 

Selling Tools 

After a month of trying to sell your home “By Owner” you have listed it with a real estate agent. You begin to notice that your agent doesn’t seem to be marketing your home the same way you did. You ran classified ads every weekend, but your agent has only advertised twice all month. At the same time, you notice there is a lot more activity than you were able to generate on your own. 

When your home is being marketed professionally, your real estate agent has many powerful selling tools that make it worth hiring someone who is experienced and competent. Some advantages to hiring an agent are the national and worldwide referral networks, the Multiple Listing Service, and the Internet. We advertise extensively in almost every media available including TV, which may bring in a call from the people who will buy your home.  


Some things are hard to measure, and others are easy. Success in a real estate sale is easy. It occurs when the “SOLD” sign is in your front yard. And having that occur as quickly as possible is the goal of every real estate agent and every home seller. 
You have undoubtedly heard that old saying about the “hard way” and the “easy way” to do something. The hard way to get the “SOLD” sign up is to try and sell it yourself. And the easy way is to use the services of a sales professional, someone who is not only trained to get it sold, but to get as much for your home as the market will bear. 
Remember, the agent doesn’t get paid until your home is “SOLD”. And the amount they earn in commission is dependent upon the amount of the sale. That’s a lot of genuine motivation to do the job right. So save yourself headaches and frustration when you are ready to sell–call a professional real estate agent. 

The FSBO Myth 

Real estate transactions can be tricky. The widespread myth that selling real estate is easy has lured many home sellers into making expensive mistakes by trying (and failing) to sell their own home. 
Many people assume that all you need is a sales contract, a classified ad and a “For Sale” sign. But even the most basic step — setting the correct sale price — depends on a number of factors. The location, size and condition of your home, the relationship between the local supply of homes and the number of qualified buyers, and the recent selling prices of comparable homes in your neighborhood all affect the market value of your property. Homeowners who sell without a professional realtor often misread the local market and overprice the home. 
Sellers might also mishandle contingencies, home inspections, title clearance, deadlines and disclosures. The advice and guidance of an experienced real estate agent is essential to ensure that you avoid the risk of expensive litigation and ensure a successful home sale. 

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