Published By: Beckham Realty Group, Inc. October 30, 2018
If you had any thoughts on listing your home without an agent to represent you, there are dozens of reasons why you will want to reconsider. Most people opt to do For Sale By Owner (Also known as FSBO) to save on commission, but in most cases it quickly can lead to a variety of disasterous scenarios that will leave you with serious regrets. Agents are here to save you the hassle, money, and your valuable time with their knowledge and expertise.
Commission Fees - One of the primary reasons people list their home FSBO is because they think they will save money on commission fees to a realtor. However, a realtor will actually pay all sorts of fees upfront that are required in order to market and sell, and they have the expertise to do so within a reasonable time frame and at the right price. If you cut a realtor out of the picture on your end, You risk accepting a low-ball offer that cuts income you could have had, OR even worse, you end up spending upfront costs in marketing and selling, plus your time, with the possibility of no results.
Setting The Right Price - Knowing just where to price your home is a key to success. Too low of a price could leave you with less than you could have gotten from the offer, and that can easily be in the thousands. Too high of a price might deter buyers, and before long, if your house sits on the market for awhile they may begin to become skeptical of why it is not selling. Realtors have access so many tools the common person does not have access to, such as local market data, price history, and neighborhood information, that allows them to put your home within the right price point immediately.
Time- When you list your home for sale by owner, you have to take the extra time for what is typically a full time job for every realtor. From making mutual time in your schedule to meet with potential buyers for walk-throughs, advertising your home, negotiating the price, going through contracts, and a world of extra work that is the realtor's job typically. Not to mention, without the knowledge and expertise a realtor has when they do the same tasks on their end, it will take you significantly longer than it likely would if you had a professional handle it.
Liability Risks - Agents have something called Error & Omissions Insurance, which protects them when handling contracts. When you are trying to draft your own contracts you always run a risk of scrutiny and a greater chance for legal hassles.
Scams - Just like the liabilities, you can also be taken advantage of easily by scammers. Everything from fraudulent loan documentation, faulty contracts, bad checks, and more just to name a few common examples that frequently occur.
Marketing - All Real Estate Agents have access to Multiple Listing Service (or MLS), which allows buyers to search across the majority of homes available in the market and compare them on the criteria that they are looking for. Not having access to be included in these listings requires you to find other means for people to find your home. Not to mention, the time and knowledge required to take the best pictures to market your home in the best possible way is crucial to selling your home. On top of the pictures, knowing how to capture the best demographic of buyers for your property is something that realtors have experience in doing.
The Buyers Agents - When you are dealing with any potential buyers, they still have their agent representing them, who will have the advantage on you when it comes to all negotiating. Because you won't have an agent representing you as well, they are likely to not take you seriously and will ultimately have the upper hand in determining the sale for the best interest of their client and their interests.
Bottom Line: Before you Decide to try and sell your home alone, sit down with a local professional to try and see how reasonable it would be for you to reconsider. You may quickly realize after having someone explain all the work involved that it can easily be something greater than you imagined and put you at a lot of risks.