In my efforts to stay on top of the real estate market in Lethbridge, I make it part of my job to study what homes are for sale. And I don't limit my efforts to just the properties listed on the MLS® system. I frequently visit the FSBO sites that have a small share of the real estate listed in our city. In my most recent visits, I made these observations about the current state of FSBO's in Lethbridge:
1. 95% of the properties listed on the FSBO sites are grossly overpriced. When I worked a reverse market analysis on the FSBO homes for sale using properties that have recently sold, the gap between market value and what the vendor is dreaming of getting is astronomical! I'm talking almost $100,000 over current market value for more than one of the homes I worked my numbers on!
2. The other 5% is underpriced. They have great properties, good photos and a reasonable asking price. So why aren't their homes selling? Simple... they are not being guided by a professional REALTOR® who is able to market the property to it's full potential.
3. The popularity of FSBO companies is steadily declining. Many former FSBO's are turning to the help of a REALTOR®. They're not giving in... they're just getting smart. In a seller's market, it's easy to sell. Now it's time to call in the help of a professional who does this every day and knows what it takes to get a home sold.
So, as a seller, if you really want or need to sell your home, please talk to a professional. Pricing and marketing are so key right now, and this is what a REALTOR® specializes in.The value of your home is the best it will be today!
As a buyer, you need to get a REALTOR® on your side to make sure you aren't offering on the home that is listed $100,000 over market value! Or you need a REALTOR® to help you decide which one is listed 5% below market value! (And yes, many FSBO's will and do work with a client who is working with a REALTOR® and will also pay a commission.... an offer is an offer.)
With that being said, there were a small handful of people who did the FSBO thing really well. They staged their properties, took lots of photos, set a realistic listing price and encouraged REALTORS® to bring them a client (we do have access to a lot of buyers... why a FSBO wouldn't encourage an agent's help is beyond me). It is with these select few that I say "You must have taken a lot of time to do this right... and you are good at it, so get licensed already!"
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