Buying FSBO's in today's market can be tricky.
An asking price is simply what the seller expects to receive on an offer of their home. They are "asking" for that price. If they are firm, and they do not receive that price, what are the consequences to them for their actions? Do they need to sell? Or are they just "testing" the market? Did they have an agent and believe that they can do a better job? Or did they receive an offer and the appraisal came in lower than the negotiated price and the buyers walk? Does the seller believe that a Realtor isn't worth their pay scale? Or that they cannot afford a Realtor? Are they in trouble, upside down in their mortgage and think that there is no way they can afford a Realtor?
All of these scenarios are potential reasons that there is no agent involved.
However, those values may be and generally are inflated by an emotional price. A value that does not translate to the new buyer.
A new buyer will not care that you had marked Hunter's first height chart on the corner of that wall. That the living room is where you first sat down with Johnny when you came home from the hospital on his first day. Or that Tanner hit a homerun right into that picture window.
They are looking to make their own memories, and are looking to purchase at a reasonable price considering the comparables in the neighborhood.
Please keep in mind that a home is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it. In any market!
And that value is tracked by sold comparables in the area that are EXACTLY like the home you are buying or selling.
That being said, I would first question why there is no agent involved? Is it because the homeowner is unrealistic about the sales price of their home? Is it because the homeowner had an agent who listed their property too high by the sellers request and then when the home didn't sell the homeowner believed it to be the agents fault?
Who knows, but there are many steps you can take to protect yourself as a buyer.
Generally, buyers do not pay for an agents services. Those expenses are paid for by the bank or the seller themseves. An appraisal costs upwards of $400-$500. So does a home inspection. If I were you, I would interview multiple agents until you find one you like. Someone that you feel has your best interest at heart.
IF you would like to interview me, please feel free to contact me at (224)267-5472 or Lisa@MadewithSchade.com.
I look forward to helping you in any way that I can.