What is the difference between selling your home as “For Sale By Owner” (FSBO) and hiring a real estate agent to help with the transaction?
1. Legal contracts. Owning real estate is one of the biggest investments that one makes. Agents have taken extensive training on contracts, real estate law, escrow, appraisals, and other continuing education courses to ensure client protection. One error on these contracts can be very costly to the buyer or seller. Having a knowledgeable, experienced real estate agent can prevent this from happening.
If you decide to do a FSBO listing, you’ll want to hire a real estate attorney to review your contract, which can be very costly, since most attorneys charge on an hourly basis, and the fee is usually non-negotiable.
2. Marketing. Marketing is a huge subject in real estate. Perhaps a FSBO seller could hang flyers or put a “For Sale” sign outside their home, but honestly, how much exposure are they going to get? We have a marketing team that manages Facebook ads and targets people who might be the best fit for the home, and they also have access to the MLS (you have to be a paying agent to advertise on the MLS).
We also pay to have our listings advertised on over 500 websites syndicated through the MLS, which is impossible without access. We offer drone videos, professional photography, and catered open houses with flyers to invite your neighbors and their friends to preview the homes. We coordinate the showings so you don’t have to deal with scheduling appointments. We want to take the headache away from you so that you don’t have to think about it.
3. Pricing your home. You don’t want to make a mistake when pricing your home. Your house could create a stigma for itself if it sits on the market for too long because it’s overpriced. Don’t rely on a Zestimate or your neighbor’s opinion of your home’s value to price your home; call a real estate agent to get an accurate evaluation.
Keep in mind that when you sell your home as a FSBO listing, buyers might try to lowball you since they know you’re saving on commission. The National Association of Realtors has released stats that show that FSBO sellers make less than those who hire agents when selling their homes.
I hope this has helped increase your understanding of what you stand to lose as a FSBO seller and what you stand to gain when you hire a real estate professional to help with your transaction. If you have any questions or need help buying or selling a home, please feel free to reach out to us. We’d be glad to help.