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The True Cost of Selling Your House on Your Own

By
Real Estate Agent with Luxury Valley Homes Scottsdale SA524104000

The True Cost of Selling Your House on Your Own




Selling your house is no simple task. While some homeowners opt to sell their homes on their own, known as a FSBO (For Sale by Owner), they often encounter various challenges without the guidance of a real estate agent. If you’re currently considering selling your house on your own, here’s what you should know.

The most recent Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) surveyed homeowners who’d recently sold their own homes and asked what difficulties they faced. Those sellers say some of the greatest challenges were prepping their home for sale, pricing it right, and properly managing the required paperwork, just to name a few.

When it comes to selling your most valuable asset, consider the invaluable support that a real estate agent can provide. By partnering with an agent, you can navigate the complexities of the selling process with confidence. Here are just a few of the many ways an agent is essential to your home sale:

1. Marketing and Exposure

Effective marketing is a key piece of attracting qualified buyers to your property. Real estate agents have access to various marketing tools and platforms, including MLS listings, professional photography, virtual tours, and extensive professional networks. They can create a compelling listing that highlights your home's best features and reaches a wider audience.

If you sell on your own, you may struggle to match the reach of agents, resulting in limited exposure and, ultimately, fewer potential buyers.

2. Managing Liability and Legal Considerations

Today, more disclosures and regulations are mandatory when selling a house. And all that paperwork and all the legal aspects of selling a home can be a lot to manage. Selling a house without professional guidance exposes homeowners to potential liability risks and legal complications.

Real estate agents are well-versed in the contracts, disclosures, and regulations necessary during a sale. Their expertise helps minimize the risk of errors or omissions that could lead to legal disputes or delays.

3. Negotiations and Contracts

Negotiating the terms of a home sale can be challenging, especially when emotions are involved. You may find it overwhelming to navigate these negotiations alone. Without an agent, you assume this responsibility on your own. This means you’ll have full accountability for working and negotiating with:

  • The buyer, who wants the best deal possible.
  • The buyer’s agent, who will use their expertise to advocate for the buyer.
  • The home inspection company, who works for the buyer.
  • The home appraiser, who assesses the property’s value to protect the lender.

Rather than going toe-to-toe with all these parties alone, lean on an expert. Real estate agents act as intermediaries, skillfully negotiating on your behalf and ensuring that your best interests are protected. They have experience in handling tough negotiations, counteroffers, and contingencies. When you sell your house yourself, you’ll need to be prepared to manage these vendors on your own.

4. Pricing and Housing Market Knowledge

Determining the right asking price for your property is crucial. It requires in-depth knowledge of the local real estate market, including recent sales data, neighborhood trends, and the current demand for properties. Real estate agents have access to comprehensive market data and the expertise to analyze it accurately.

When you sell your house on your own without this comprehensive information, you risk overpricing or underpricing your home. This can result in an extended time on the market and also the risk of leaving money on the table - which decreases your future buying power. An agent is a key piece of the pricing puzzle.

Bottom Line

While selling a home on your own might seem appealing at first, the challenges that come with it can quickly become overwhelming. The expertise that a real estate agent brings to the table is vital for a successful sale. Instead of tackling it alone, let’s connect to make sure you have an expert on your side.

Comments(10)

Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®
RE/MAX Platinum - Waukesha, WI
Giving Back With Each Home Sold!

Great post!  Thanks for sharing and enjoy your day!

Jun 26, 2023 07:51 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

This is good information to share.

Have a great day and a very productive week.

Jun 26, 2023 08:04 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Jane & Jeff Daley, PhD anyone every involved in a FSBO will probably never repeat that mistake again.

Jun 26, 2023 08:14 AM
Kimo Jarrett
Cyber Properties - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Unless the FSBO seller has had experience in successfully closing real estate transactions, a better option is to hire a Realtor to either sell or guide them through the process. Most FSBO sales are unsuccessful, many just want to test the market and speculate. However, serious sellers should always list their properties with a professional. 

Jun 26, 2023 11:21 AM
Ruth Honick, CRS, ABR, SFR, e-PRO
Keller Williams Realty Chattahoochee N - Alpharetta, GA
No Grass Grows Under my Feet

So helpful! Thank you. 

Jun 26, 2023 04:19 PM
Anne Corbin
Long and Foster - Lake Anna - Spotsylvania, VA
Serving Lake Anna & Central Virginia

I represent a client who bought land from a FSBO. They immediately listed it with me after closing. The FSBO failed to follow the subdivision Right of First Refusal prior to closing and now it is a big mess. The only reason this came to light was because I asked my client about receiving the POA Disclosure Packet and if the seller took care of the ROFR. Good thing I asked! It looks like a neighbor wants the property. Oh no! It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I wish the original seller had used a local agent, who could have told them about this requirement.

Jun 27, 2023 05:58 AM
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

FSBO can sound appealing in a hot market--but the devil is in the details as they say!

Why risk it with such a big financial transaction?

Jun 27, 2023 02:09 PM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker
Great information, thanks for sharing.  I hope you have a great day.
Jun 28, 2023 02:19 AM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

Thank you for sharing this information.  Going it alone makes for a very lonely transactio should things go south -- without a professional Realtor being at the helm.

Jul 05, 2023 01:37 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Excellent post reminding those trying to sell their own house that's a lot more involved than coming up with a list price!  

Jul 18, 2023 05:14 PM