Home Selling in Cincinnati>Question Details

Trent Warner, Real Estate Pro in Cincinnati, OH

Do "For Sale By Owners" have much of a chance with all the inventory out there?

Asked by Trent Warner, Cincinnati, OH Thu Oct 14, 2010

Help the community by answering this question:


For sale by owners are usually to attached to the property to look at the situation from a business angle. They most often do not have the tools to market it or price it properly.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 16, 2010
There are a lot of "IF's" in the answer to this question.

IF they are listed in the MLS
IF they have quality photographs
IF they are readily available for showings
IF they show well
IF they are priced well

Then they have as good a change as any FSBO would have even without all the inventory out there. The issue that plagues FSBOs in general is that they are often "unknown" to the real estate community. They are often not listed on the MLS, so most agents don't know about them. Their photos are unprofessional (dark and blurry), they're not readily available to show (I can only show when I'm off work, or on weekends, and this Sunday we have a wedding to attend so we can't show), and they are often (not always) priced incorrectly.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
Statistically, they do not. The number of FSBO sellers has declined every year for the last decade and for good reason - as a group, they are not successful.

The vast majority of FSBO homes are eventally listed with an agent (I could not find the statistic, but I believe it was between 80%-90%)

Surprisingly, only 49% of FSBO sellers are choosing FSBO to avoid paying a commission. The majority of the other 51% are doing so because they already know the buyer.

Not so surprising, is that this is the reason FSBO homes that do sell, sell much faster is because they don't need to find a buyer, they already have one. Most of these sellers were in rural areas and sold for asking price.

The median selling price for agent sales only was $217,000, FSBO sales only was $172,000 and tried FSBO first then agent $143,000.

These are national statistics.

My opinion as to why, is that FSBO sellers do not have the tools or expertise to price their homes correctly and do not have the most used (by buyers) websites available to them, lack the expertise and have to negotiate for themselves (which is very difficult even for experienced negotiators). Buyers would rather but from a professional agent unless there is a huge price advantage in their favor when buying FSBO. As a result the buyers on the FSBO websites are bargain hunters and are expecting to pay less.

If you already have a buyer, I think it is worthwhile, otherwise, I think you end up with less money after all expenses that if you had paid a commission to a good agent.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
I certainly respect one's desire to sell by owner, but statistically, the odds are against them with all the other inventory out there. FSBO's are typically not motivated and don't price their homes correctly.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
Its easy for FSBO listings to get lost in the suffle with all the inventory out there...if they are even found by buyers in the first place. They are at a huge disadvantage with lack of marketing and knowledge of real estate transactions from begining to end. But if a FSBO seller is proactive, serious about selling, takes the time to educate themselves on the subject, invests in marketing other than a generic sign from the hardware store, and are open to compromise...then YES, there is a chance they could result in a successful sale.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 19, 2010
Reality check......

Most owners of FSBO property do not have a good understanding of their home's value relative to the current local RE market and tend to want top dollar with as little professional representation as possible.

Four or five years ago, when the market was "hot" ....prices were high and inventory low, doing a FSBO was relatively easy. But times have changed, competition is stiff and inventory is busting at the seams.

Unless FSBO's understand the RE market and can compete with the distressed market(short sales & Foreclosures) they should stick to watching "Flip that House" on television.......
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
You always have a chance in the market place. You need to understand what the values of the homes are in your area to determine the opportunity you have with your home. Check the sold homes and active listed homes within your neighborhood and then a 2 mile radius. Check out what is selling and at what price. Look at the properties and the information to find comparable homes of size, bedrooms, baths, garage space, basement condition and such. Check the conditions of the properties and then rate your home amongst them. Determine your value and then evaluate what you owe on the home and what you are willing to sell it for. Hopefully, you will be in position to have a successful transaction. Remember, many home owners are looking for a good value and many of them include FISBO's in their search. Good Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
Trent -

Why not? If it is priced properly and marketed diligently - it will sell.

There is even a greater chance of the home selling if they are willing to pay a commission to a selling agent.

FSBO's downfall is more about mis-pricing and poor marketing. If they can get these items right - they stand a good chance.

Good Luck!

If you like the answer - please consider making it a "Best Answer" !

Gerard Dunn
Associate Broker
Licensed in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Assisting Homebuyer's and Seller's for 28 years
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
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