Should you sell your home for sale by owner (FSBO) or use an agent? Some people are very successful at selling their home “for sale by owner”. They have knowledge great marketing strategies, how to best show their home, and they possess a good understanding of the documents needed and how to fill them out. They are versed in negotiation tactics, but most of all, they are aware of the current market in their area and have priced their home correctly. They realize the majority of homes on the market today are sold through a brokerage and they are aware that potential buyers might expect them to sell for less than market value, since they will not be paying a listing agent commission.
On the other hand, listing your home with an agent means that upon closing, you pay a commission to the brokerages involved, which out of your net proceeds. This commission is negotiable. The advantages, however, might just be the deciding factors to support using an agent to sell your home.
Advantages of Selling By Owner (FSBO)
» The seller pays no real estate commission to listing agent (but normally will to buyer’s agent).
» Possibility of selling at below market value, but still receive higher proceeds than you would have gotten had you used an agent.
» The seller controls all aspects of the sale (although this could be a disadvantage).
Advantages of Using an Agent
» The agent uses their proven marketing strategies.
» The agent can do a market analysis, which shows comparable home sales and together you can determine the asking price.
» The agent places your home in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) so it can be seen and shown by other agents from other agencies. This is the number one factor in bringing a large number of prospective buyers, since they are able to actually see that your home is for sale.
» Agents typically screen potential buyers.
» Agents show your home to potential buyers.
» Agents assist you with all the contracts
» Agents present purchase offers from buyers, and can submit counter-offers to buyers on your behalf.
» Most buyers use agents to help them find a new home, since they are “free” in California.
Still not convinced using a Realtor® is your best choice? Thinking about selling your home “for sale by owner” (FSBO) or using one of those “flat fee MLS” listing services? Read THIS or THAT first! Keep in mind you will still be paying a 2.5% or 3% commission to the buyer’s agent.