Is it worth it to use a realitor or if one is smart enough can one do for sale by owner easily?

Asked by Sara, Stockton, UT Mon Oct 3, 2011

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Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Well, you're asking a board full of Realtors(r), Sara.

I'll tell you this - it isn't easy for us, even those of us with years of experience selling hundreds of homes. And some of us are "smart enough."

Let me ask you this question - would you let somebody who had never sold a home before take responsibility for selling your home, even for free?

Because that "somebody" is - you.

All the best,
1 vote
Don Tepper, Agent, Burke, VA
Tue Oct 4, 2011
You certainly can do a "For Sale By Owner" yourself. Lots of people do. On the other hand, most of the people who start off FSBO end up using a Realtor. But it's certainly possible to do it yourself. If you want, give it a try.

Can you do it easily? No. As Mack says, it often isn't easy even for professionals. There's a huge amount of work that you don't see, all of which has to be done properly. Plus lots of marketing. Often, lots of negotiation. Honestly: If it were easy, everyone would do it and there'd be no need for Realtors. So: Easily--no. Possible--yes.

Is it worth it to use a Realtor? Almost always. When would it not be worth it? A private sale, maybe between family members, when the questions of value, the need for negotiation, and so on aren't significant. In that case, it'd make more sense just to go to a lawyer. Or for a period of a year or two back in 2005-2006 when any property seemed to sell almost instantly . . . when getting financing wasn't a problem . . . when there was no problem pricing a property above what your neighbor's sold for last week because someone was willing to pay more, the appraisers were willing to give a high appraisal, and the banks were begging borrowers to take their money.

But now, when it's gotten a lot more difficult to sell, when your marketing needs to be effective, when your home has to show well, when lenders and appraisers have tightened up on their criteria--yes, it's almost always worth it to use a Realtor.

Hope that helps.
3 votes
Ha! touchn a sore spot there. Come oon buddy, give them some credit-dealing real estate is complicated. they have to know ALOT. There's a book of the 'for idiots' series that can give u an idea. 'Real Estate for Idiots' or some such.
Flag Sat Jun 16, 2012
Kevin Olson,…, Agent, Colorado Springs, CO
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Sara, you spelled Realtor wrong, so hopefully this isn't a joke since you're using "smart enough".

I would honestly give it a try. Some of the most appreciative clients we have had are former for sale by owners. Yes, many people have sold their homes themselves. Most of those were during the boom, or to family/friends/neighbors. If it doesn't work out there will certainly be an agent there wanting to assist in selling your home.
1 vote
Shanna Rogers, Agent, Murrieta, CA
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Hi Sara,

Hiring a Realtor would most likely be in your best interests - to avoid potential lawsuits in the future.

However, if your husband is pushing you to do it yourself, make sure you know all the laws in your area about selling Real Estate, make sure you know all disclosures you are required to provide the buyer, make sure you have all verbiage in all contracts and required paperwork, etc.

I would advise ALL people (including Realtors) to use a Realtor.

Good luck.

Shanna Rogers
SR Realty
1 vote
Bill Freeze, Agent, Provo, UT
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Sarah, The buying and selling of Real Estate today has become very complicated. Experienced Realtors might make it look easy, but it is not. Real Estate documents are complicated to the novice or the untrained and the legal requirements and protection of proper disclosure are very important in a transaction. Only real estate attorneys or Realtors are trained to handle the sale of real estate. Less than 10% of all residential sales in the country are handled sucessfully by For Sale By Owners. In most cases these FSBOs sold their property for less than a Realtor would have....including commissions. You can find a experienced Realtor by asking friends or look for Realtors with a CRS designation...they are Certified Residential Specialists. Feel free to call me and I'll refer a trusted professional to you in Stockton. Thanks for the great question....Bill Freeze, CRS, ABR, e-PRO, SSS (801-367-0267).
1 vote
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Mon Oct 3, 2011
If you are smart enough, you know enough to use a quality professional to handle the issues that require a specialist. An agent has to know law, marketing, negotiations, be up to date on the current market, their fellow agents and contracts just to name a few things.
I've represented lawyers, Drs, engineers and lots of very smart professionals in other fields I knew a little about, but I'm not qualified to practice. Don't get me wrong, an agent is not equal to a Dr, lawyer or engineer, but we know enough more about our profession to be of value.
My strong advice is to hire the best, most experienced and qualified agent you can find. A good agent brings value to a transaction. A bad agent or none at all can cost you more than just the commission.
1 vote
Adam Harward, Agent, Provo, UT
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Always use a Realtor! I'm sure you have excellent negotiating skills but using a Realtor is in your best interest. It allows you access to market information that will help you negotiate, current laws and contract details that are constantly changing. It is in your best interest to use a Realtor. I've seen it time and time again where people end up in trouble because they didn't know a small detail about Utah's Real Estate laws.

Just my 2 cents :)
1 vote
Laura Feghali, Agent, Stamford, CT
Mon Oct 3, 2011
Hello Sara,
I don't believe that it is a question of whether you are a savvy sales person and know how to ready and present your home for sale, but rather it's the vast array of marketing tools that many agents have to utilize to give your home maximum exposure on the internet.

More than 90% of buyers begin their search for a home on the internet. An experienced agent knows and has the marketing dollars to post your home's listing on a multitude of web sites which would cost you thousands of dollars to even come close to that amount of exposure.

It's best to hire an experienced agent that you feel comfortable with as they will work hard to get your home sold quickly and for the highest price that the market can bear.

Good luck!

Laura Feghali
Prudential Connecticut Realty
1 vote
Barb & Bryan…, Agent, Grantsville, UT
Sun Jun 3, 2012
People don't pay a commission because they want to spend, they do it to save money. A Realtor that knows what they are doing will save you the commission. This is a big step for you and your family... use someone that will help you to be an educated seller. If you want to save money then contact a realtor with a for sale by owner program so you at least have a guide with one of the biggest investments in your life.

If you have a Realtor that knows how to stage your home, that alone will save you 1000's!

There are a lot of scams out there, don't be the latest victim.
0 votes
Sara, Home Buyer, Stockton, UT
Wed Oct 5, 2011
Thank you -- some of you are quite funny. Please forgive for spellibng realitor wrong, it is one of those words that I never can spell correctly. I probably spelled it incorrectly again!

Anyway, we decided to go with a realtor. I am snappy and bright, but I am not confident in myself regarding this one thing.

Thanks everyone!
0 votes
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Tue Oct 4, 2011

Our world has become one of specialization. Ask doctors, lawyers, MBA's, educators etc. why they elect to use the services of a real estate professional.

Yes, anyone can find a home that meets their needs but making a purchase "solo" certainly increases the chances of encountering problems that could cause you to question your otherwise "good intentions."

Good luck,

0 votes
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