Five Key Points You Need to Consider Before Selling By-Owner
A real estate agent or by-owner? Think about your big picture first
Are you thinking about selling your house? If so, you probably share the goals of other sellers and want your property to sell quickly and at a great price. You may have already made some minor renovations and given your curb appeal a boost, and now you’re facing the big question that many homeowners ask themselves when it’s time to sell: real estate agent or by-owner?
Before you make your decision make sure to consider all of the pros and cons and look at your big picture first. For example, many people opt for by-owner because they can save a few thousand dollars in REALTOR® commissions, but for sale by owner homes, on average, sell for about 25% less than homes listed with an agent.
If you’re considering selling your home by owner, you may want to think about these issues that will be part of the process:
- You’ll still have agent fees — There’s no listing agent commission, but you will most likely still owe a portion of the buyer’s agent’s fees.
- You’ll have to spend your own money upfront — You’re on your own when it comes to marketing your house to potential buyers, which means you’ll still need to spend some money (plus a lot of your time) on advertising and open houses, including a photographer, stager, and signage.
- You’ll have to spend your own time showing the property — You will need to be able to make the time in your schedule to handle all showings, open houses, phone calls and any other meetings concerning your property.
- You’ll have to educate yourself on the paperwork and processes — There are a lot of factors that you will need to familiarize yourself with in order to have a successful sale, such as market conditions, comparable home sales in your area, neighborhood information, screening potential buyers and how to negotiate for the best deal.
- You’ll have to hire an attorney, which can be more expensive than a real estate agent — Many states require any real estate transaction/contract to be viewed by a real estate attorney, so if you’re selling by-owner you will be responsible for finding out if your deal requires the presence of an attorney, and if so it is up to you to find and pay for the proper professional.
These are just a few of the things you will want to keep in mind if you decide to sell your property by-owner. Really, when you add in all of the stress that normally comes with selling a house, you might start questioning if saving that agent’s commission makes going it alone worth it. In addition to the logistics of time and money, there are also emotional elements to think about, such as hearing first-hand criticism of your house from potential buyers. It’s important to ask yourself if you are ready for your life and schedule to revolve around your house until it sells.
Some people decide to take on the challenge of selling by-owner in exchange to have full control of the process and of the scheduling. If these items are not super important to you and you prefer to not be as involved in the process, then the better option might be to hire an experienced agent to take the reins and guide you through the windy roads of real estate.
When you add in all of the stress that comes with selling a house, you might start questioning if saving that agent’s commission makes going it alone worth it.
The amount of people who use a real estate agent to sell their house has increased over the last five years, and currently, 90% of home sellers opt to list with an agent. In many situations, using an agent is the way to sell your house in a more timely manner and can net you more money in the long-run. For more advice on selling or renting your home in the Seattle area, without all of the stress, contact us today, or check out our blog for some helpful advice and tips. We are always ready to answer your questions and would welcome the opportunity to help you with your property needs!
— Kim& Yvonne