Is it best to sell my home myself or with a realtor?

Asked by Holly Ellingworth, 54009 Thu Jan 7, 2010

We don't have much equity so I'm concerned about paying commissions. Really we just want to break even and want to price the house right but also want to be able to negotiate with a buyer too.

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Answers

46
Joan Braunsc…, , Morris County, NJ
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Joseph,
You are still oddly arguing with yourself.
I haven't actually said one thing that disagreed specifically with anything you said.
I have simply taken offense at the belligerent tone of your posts.
Dunes and I have agreed and disagreed in the past but where we are ALWAYS in agreement is that this site should be used to the benefit of the consumer.
I am NOT here to sell myself or my services, or here to speak for all realtors. I am only here to speak for myself and learn as much as possible.
Perhaps it would be to your advantage to tone it down a notch and be open to polite discussion.
Otherwise you can continue to argue with yourself.
I hope you win.
3 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Mon Jan 11, 2010
Oh my - I am late to this party..........Rock - here I am just coasting at 3:25AM...the night is young!

Dunes:..... "On my profile I said.."The Excellent NJ RE Agent Joan Braunschweiger said I also should mention I'm grumpy and Sarcastic"..........the least you could do Dunes, is mention that you mentioned ME TOO, and I am the Empress of Trulia! Geesh, I turn my back for a moment, and I don't get equal billing....or any billing.

Renegade? Joan? hah..fighting Dunes's battle? Like Dunes needs a protector..but not to worry, Joan, I am here on my white horse - reinforcements have arrived ! (this is so silly).

Mack - I just got on the ice - I wanna skate some more!


Holly - list with a flat fee broker...you may wind up paying 1/2 of a normal commission, but maybe an unrepresented buyer (unlikely, but it can happen) will come along on the mls or realtor.com and contact you directly. In my area, we don't consider any listed homes as fsbos, even if they are ;isted with limited service brokers........but it's all in the eye of the beholder.

I actually took the time to try and read what was posted here..............does "much ado about nothing" ring a bell?
Joseph - your answers were a bit verbose for me to read them all the way through.....but some of them aren't very flattering to you.......not good in a public forum...we are always being judged by how we present ourselves here.
Dunes has nothing to lose - he isnt; running for office or looking to find new buyers or sellers...as agents, we do have a lot to lose, however, by not conducting ourselves in a certain professional manner - being in attack mode isn't pretty, in my opinion.

And on that note..Rock, even I am going to sleep now.....well, maybe in 10 min or so.....or 15........
2 votes
Joan Braunsc…, , Morris County, NJ
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Joseph,
Wow, I think you best take your own advice.
Dunes is certainly more than capable of defending himself and I'm sure he believes you are not worth his time, but before you write anymore posts which does not put you in the best light, I would suggest taking the time to read his profile and the thousands of contributions made by him. Shall we compare?
Being belligerent is the worst way to defend your views.
You may want to consider deleting your post because do remember, this is PUBLIC.
At the very least, if you choose to battle, get to know your opponent because honestly, you look the fool.
2 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Sun Jan 10, 2010
OK OK - let's go, two minutes for you and you and you and you, let's go, offada ice!

The useful content starts about nine messages down, dear reader.
1 vote
Voices Member, , Benton County, OR
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Yes, once again you've proven something is True merely because you say so Joseph and anyone who disagrees or questions you is part of a group of renegade writers who beats up on Realtors like yourself..

1. I have never said Realtors are bad.
2. I have never told anyone to do a FSBO
3. I have always used a Full-Service Agent and said so often.
4. Consumers have options and I do believe they should know them so they can decide for themselves what works best for them.
5. I do not have multiple profiles or a gang of renegade writers fighting my battles or tag teaming with me..
6, Joan and I always agree.....Your research skills are lacking....
7. I said Joan is the Best Agent in NJ...Untrue..
You have taken something I never said and tried to make an untrue comment appear as if it supported your rudeness in some way.

On my profile I said.."The Excellent NJ RE Agent Joan Braunschweiger said I also should mention I'm grumpy and Sarcastic."

I put it there because she said I should put Grumpy and Sarcastic on my Profile in a thread where We were not in agreement....I do think Joan is extremely honest and has contributed a lot of quality to this Forum.
I do not think you'll find me alone in having that opinion.

8. I didn't just make a lot of posts

In this thread it is you who have made the accusations and tossed out the insults.......

This comment to Joan was an immature and sleezy kind of comment to make IMHO. The first half is untrue and the second half is suggesting what?
"I also see he recognizes you as New Jersey's best real estate pro. So what did you do to earn that title? "
Real Classy.

You have exposed someone but it was not me or Joan or any renegade band of writers...

So right back at ya.."Are you on something, dude?"
Dunes
1 vote
Cathy Rackha…, Agent, Albany, GA
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Sounds like you don't have a lot of money to waste so I would definetly go with a Professional Realtor affiliated with a reputable Real Estate Company. A listing agents job for the most part in the begining is bringing the buyers to your property through marketing. A professional Realtor can market your property in many more ways than you can on your own. You won't owe them a dime for all that marketing. They will only get paid if your house sells and closes! I am not talking about a discount brokerage that charges by the hour or per service. I am talking about a Real Estate Professional working at a great company who has the experience getting houses sold! Ask the agent you select pointed questions about what type of marketing they do to get the buyers in. This is a hard market right now and unless your agent has a strong marketing plan they won't be able to attract the most buyers or buyers agents. I would also recommend not skimping on the commission. You get what you pay for in most cases and you want to attract as many buyers agents as possible with a fair commission. Your real estate professional can save you hundreds and thousands of dollars through out the process. Money you may have spent on unnecessary things had you marketed and sold your house yourself.
Check out my web site which has 35 answers to buyer and sellers questions regarding buying, listing and selling your home. http://www.oregonmidvalleyhomes.com
1 vote
Joan Braunsc…, , Morris County, NJ
Sat Jan 9, 2010
Joseph,
If you read my first post on this thread, I also believe being listed on the MLS is necessary: you are preaching to the choir.
If you read Dunes post carefully, you would see that he also did not argue against the importance of being on the MLS.
I'm not sure how it works in Wisconsin (Holly's state) but in most places, a FSBO just has to hire a flat-fee service to list on the MLS.
I am in agreement with Dunes(and others) that FSBO's are a valid choice for some people. Some people are well-suited for it and are knowledgeable enough to be able to handle the process.
Other people, not so much, which is where we come in.
There will always be people who wish to use an agent and there will always be people who choose not to.
So if we all agree that the MLS is an important selling tool, what exactly are you arguing about??
1 vote
Jeff K, Home Buyer, Bristol, PA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Hi Rockin,

Oh you weren't confusing the issue at all. That honor goes to our friend Paul, and I was only trying to help ensure that Holly wasn't bamboozle'd by his Realtor magic pixie dust.

Jeff
1 vote
Jeff K, Home Buyer, Bristol, PA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Holly,

To clarify, as this may be starting to look a bit confusing - FSBO does NOT preclude a Seller from leveraging the MLS! Not at all! You can get on the MLS without being listed with an agent/Realtor, as a flat fee for something like $150-250.

FSBO also doesn't preclude you from offering a reasonable % to prospective buyers agents so that they have every reason to bring their buyers to that door. No one here said use FSBO and don't use the MLS. They are not exclusive in any way. The only person to imply this is an agent who would much rather that sellers never even consider an alternative.

When my father sold their house in NY a few years back before they moved to Florida, he did it via FSBO and made 5% OVER market value. I saw the Sold Comps at the time with my own eyes. My mother admittedly got very nervous during negotiations but dad handled that and they did very well.

Now I am not urging you to try the same, but please do consider reading up on the resources that are available to you and make your own decision. Buy a $13 book, read some of it, and you'll know if you really want to try it out or not. The book will contain all sorts of good info anyway, so that you'll be better informed about the overall process - and knowledge is a good thing. It's YOUR house and it represents a large investment. It's very good that you have started to inquire now, before going down any specific path.

Best of luck to you, and never blindly listen to any RE Pro that broadly asserts things like "you'll make less with FSBO". Some salespeople have been know to say things, out of self-interest ... now and again.

Best of luck to you and your husband! I hope tthat you are moving somewhere warmer!
1 vote
Voices Member, , Benton County, OR
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Joseph

'most By Owners sell for LESS than they would had they used a Realtor."

What are you basing that on, the NAR Home Buyer and Seller Profile survey? What year? Most here in the past use numbers from 2008(A survey done by mail where the the adjusted response rate was 7.9 percent. on a mailout of 133,000) ? What year are you using if it is indeed the source for FSBO's sell for less or owners make less than if using a Realtor? If not the Survey then what source?


"Any existing MLS has large numbers of hungry agents with prospective buyers in their little black books waiting for the right home to come on the market. When yours does, they call and schedule appointments and they're off to the races- competing with other agents to be the first to SELL your listing."

So you can't use a Flat-Fee service to be on that MLS or Realtor.com or.......

I have always used an Agent and never told anyone here or in the real world that they should go FSBO.
But it is one of several options, a choice and has been done successfully...
If there is going to be data or arguments presented against the choice perhaps they should be made legitimate by stating where these figures come from, who produced them and how..Also being listed on the MLS does not require using a Full Service Agent as far as I know....


Dunes
4 points more towards my
does not represent
Expertise, knowledge
Professionalism or anything else
except I post a lot VIP Badge
1 vote
Jeff K, Home Buyer, Bristol, PA
Thu Jan 7, 2010
Hi Holly,

FSBO isn't for everyone. I'm a sales professional (not real esate) and probably will FSBO when I eventually sell my home but this will be many years from now, assuming I ever sell it. But that's me. If you do go with an agent/Realtor, just please make sure you review the info that Dunes and Rockinblue put together on interviewing agents, to help make sure you are making a good choice.

By all means please review the information that Rockinblu and Dan provided on FSBO. At the end of that, you should have a better notion as to whether you and your husband should give it a shot, at least for a month or two.

As someone who has bought and sold a number of homes, what I most strongly urge up front is to properly prep and stage your home. If you look around on Trulia you'll find posts by myself and others on the basics of Staging 101. They are very important, regardless of whether you sell your home FSBO or with a agent/Realtor.

Your home is a Product, and needs to be in it's best light, so you minimize or eliminate possible objections for potential buyers. By all means, throw out everything you can, donate everything you can, and take a lot of stuff that you don't immediately need and get it into storage, etc. You want your house open, spotless and without any clutter.

So ... back to FSBO. I certainly am hearing your concern about keeping your equity. One thing I would recommend is that you get a really good idea of what your home is really worth. Review the recent SOLD Comps in your area. This will give you a pretty good idea of where you stand. Hopefully, those numbers are higher than you were hoping for, or at least what you need.

Here's a book on FSBO that I own - I thought it was pretty good. BUT ... our friend Rockinblu ACTUALLY has DONE FSBO a few times, and most of us feel that he's one sharp fellow. So do please read his info.

Best of luck to you and your husband!
1 vote
Courtney Coo…, Agent, Seattle, WA
Thu Jan 7, 2010
rockinblu has some pretty great references for you as always:)
1 vote
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Thu Jan 7, 2010
Rockinblu, I just referenced the same ones. I hope that gives them the needed incentive to look at them.
1 vote
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Thu Jan 7, 2010
All of the realtors will tell you you should use a realtor.

You could go for sale by owner. But not everyone can or should do that.

Look here http://www.trulia.com/voices/profile/Other-Austin_TX-309659/blog/

He posted some good blogs for you to read.
http://www.trulia.com/blog/rockinblu/2008/08/thinking_about_…
http://www.trulia.com/blog/rockinblu/2008/12/i_ve_got_my_fin…
Those 2 blogs may give you just what you need to decide if you want to get a realtor or not. I can only wish you luck whatever you decide.
1 vote
Rosewholesale, Both Buyer And Seller, Shenandoah County, VA
Mon Jun 17, 2013
In my opinion,by yourself.
0 votes
Heather Paul, Agent, Santa Monica, CA
Thu Jan 27, 2011
You will definitely want to sell with a Realtor, selling on your own is complicated, and a local real estate agent can assist you with all the contracts, inspections, negotiations, and majority of the time home sellers earn 10-15% more on the sale of their home with a realtor.

Here is a blog I posted recently that I think will help you greatly:
http://www.trulia.com/blog/HeatherPaul/2011/01/is_now_a_good…

Feel free to call me or email me anytime,
Heather Paul
Coldwell Banker
(424)625-1037
Web Reference:  http://www.heatherpaul.net
0 votes
The Harrison…, Agent, Harrisonburg, VA
Tue Jan 12, 2010
Realtor! Realtors are constantly in the real estate world, they know and understand the market, and they know what works and what doesn't in terms of marketing. Pricing your home right is the most important decision you'll make, and a Realtor can help you with that as well.

It will sell faster if you use a Realtor, so the extra commission will be worth your net at the end.
0 votes
Barbara Q., , Bergen County, NJ
Tue Jan 12, 2010
Holly- I am a numbers person. You should read Rockin's Blog, then interview TOP Realtors in your area ,
then get out your legal sized yellow pad and make 3 columns:
1.) Full Service Realtor
2.) Flat Fee Service + Buyer's Agent Fee
3.) FSBO
then work and rework the numbers. (Be sure to place a $ value on YOUR time.)
You may be surprised by how much you are or are not saving.
Good Luck with your decision!
Web Reference:  http://www.321advantage.com
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Dunes, don't put words in MY mouth. I NEVER said sleezy. Get YOUR mind out of the gutter. Look, if your profiles are correct, you are in Oregon and Joan is in New Jersey. That's pretty far apart. My remark only implied she is fighting your battles because she is on your profile. Whatever else YOU may imply is your business- keep it that way. You're getting out of hand... stop this now, please.
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
This time, I'm saying with all the sincerity I can think of putting on paper. I am sorry, both of you, really. Will you help me feel better by saying, "OK"? Please?
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Keep it up, Dunes. You say, "I've never said Realtors are bad." I never said you did, either! I was rude with you in my first response to you, Dunes; this much is true. I didn't think that I should be providing my sources, as you say. After I thought about, YOU WERE RIGHT! Actually, I've had to think about this and you did good. The attacking stuff now... it's not me. I still think you work together attacking me. As for your profile, I think it's pretty cool. Don't stop answering questions- just don't beat up on newbies because they overlooked providing a source. Or continue beating them up... I don't care. You can't hurt me... I am only trying to help others, too. I'm not afraid of bullies but I learned to "Tone it down" as Joan says. Finally, I think it's cool that you say you're grumpy and sarcastic, really. Look... she fights your battles and I point to your profile... what do you expect I should say? I'll be the bigger one here... I'm sorry, really, both of you. Still, if arguing is what you both want to do... bring it on.
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Joan,

Why would I argue with Best Realtor in New Jersey Joan?
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Hi Holly,

I like Cathy's answer because she is passionate about her response. It is not easy to support a system that costs money but if the value created by going with an agent exceeds the cost then it would be well worth hiring the agent. If it does not, then the question can be rephrased. If the value created (with an agent) exceeds the cost when considering the time and effort and money collectively spent selling "By Owner", then it would be well worth exploring. (smile)
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Anytime Dunes. (smile) You're exposed now.
0 votes
Christophe C…, Agent, Beverly HIlls, CA
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Absolutely without doubt with a realtor. Selling on your own you put yourself at risk legally and ultimately will end up with less net in your pocket than with a professional Realtor.
0 votes
Voices Member, , Benton County, OR
Sun Jan 10, 2010
"Secondly, you agree with Dunes because you always agree with Dunes. That's ok, too... I just want to expose you for the tag team that you are. There may be others, too."

"It can also be destructive if little schools of renegade writers like yourselves run around beating up others. You target their entries because they're new to this site and they did not "support" their entry and you collectively gang up on someone who gets defensive for some criticism received by your "team". If that continues, then Trulia will suffer, not me."

"So stop beating me up, Joan"

Well I guess you exposed us...Good job!

renegade writer
Dunes
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sun Jan 10, 2010
Hey Joan,

Your last line says, "If we all agree that the MLS is an important selling tool, what exactly are you arguing about?" Who is "We"?
I don't want to argue about anything. In fact, my first entry was ENTIRELY about THE VALUE OF THE MLS!! If you really bothered to read ALL of the entries prior to my first one, NOBODY ELSE SPOKE ABOUT THE INCREDIBLE VALUE OF THE MLS! You were probably the closest with your prior statement, "I really think listing on the MLS is mandatory in this competitive environment", but you did not explain why. WHY, Joan, WHY? I went on to explain why- I talked about the more local target marketing it provides, the business it gives agents for the investment of their MLS fees, etc. You simply said that Flat Fee Brokerage is the most popular in New Jersey. Well, it's not the most popular in Illinois and many other states. Therefore, I was making a new, important entry and I was providing reasons why. So, if you, as you say, all agree that the MLS is an important selling tool, then I was "among" the first to write just that in my first entry. Secondly, you agree with Dunes because you always agree with Dunes. That's ok, too... I just want to expose you for the tag team that you are. There may be others, too. I'm learning about this site. Trulia can be very constructive for buyers and agents and loan professionals and others sharing information. It can also be destructive if little schools of renegade writers like yourselves run around beating up others. You target their entries because they're new to this site and they did not "support" their entry and you collectively gang up on someone who gets defensive for some criticism received by your "team". If that continues, then Trulia will suffer, not me. I have NO fear of any remark you have, BEST REALTOR JOAN, because my Profile speaks for itself. I don't need 1,000 Trulia entries to know I provide great value. My income and my referrals do that for me, even in a slow market, and that's real life value. As for Dunes... I apologized to Dunes for my beligerence... I've learned! I will support my future statements from now on. With that said, I still stand by my conviction that the MLS is the best source for the sale of a RESIDENTIAL home in virtually any location. Whether a FSBO can post for a flat fee or not is inconsequential. The MLS tool is most likely part of the value package already offered by a real estate pro... that's what I've said and that's what I still say. Also, Kirk Dirksen, who gave the second entry on this thread, said, "Studies have shown that sellers put more money in their pocket by using a Realtor and paying the commissions than by going at it alone." So, I'm not the first to say it without providing a source. The first answer on this thread says, "the secret to hiring an agent is that you need to hire someone who provides value." The MLS is probably the largest part of what gives agents that value. Their MLS fees are probably the greatest source of operating revenue to support its very existence. With all of the said, I don't believe that selling "By Owner" makes the best sense BUT I LOVE America because people can always choose to sell "By Owner". Who knows, I may even choose to sell "By Owner" someday so I would like to preserve that right, too. So stop beating me up, Joan; like YOU said, you don't need to fight Dunes battles. So the question remains, "WHY DO YOU?"
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Sat Jan 9, 2010
Hey Joan,

Many through history have looked the fool for being right. It only takes time for the truth to become apparent. I stand by my conviction, although my defense was a little poignant. I did check out Dunes profile and I see he made a lot of posts. I also see he recognizes you as New Jersey's best real estate pro. So what did you do to earn that title? I do owe Dunes an apology for talking so sharp. With that said, I stand by MY statement that MLS services provide value in the generally accepted knowledge that they can sell a property for more money and in less time than selling by owner. Mack McCoy is the only one who acknowledged that it really is a matter of the one buyer and the one seller who consumate a deal. Still, on average or taken anyway you want to look at it, the power of the MLS drives up the value of a property... in theory and in practice, even in a depressed market.
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
I don't know, RIB, I think "committed" is the correct word there. They are now only committed to saving half the commission, the other half may be claimed. So, with your point clarifying that they may avoid paying that half, I stand by my sentence.
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Well, nobody should blindly listen to anything other than what I have to say! (Mack does not do emoticons).

The fact is, nobody really knows whether agents net sellers more money than they would have gotten if they'd FSBOed; conversely, nobody really knows whether FSBOs net as much or more money than if they had listed. This is because Fair Market Value is determined once there's a willing buyer and willing seller, and every property is slightly different and has different participants in the transaction.

But the thing about being a hybrid FSBO - unrepresented seller offering whatever a "full" selling agent's commission might be - is that now, you've committed to only saving 50% of the commission, which changes your place on the risk/reward grid.
0 votes
Loan Do, Agent, Oceanside, CA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
In any profession, there are tricks of the trade to get things rolling and in a timely manner. Do you have any? Many Realtors, too.
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Hey Dunes,

Think before you write. I did not specify a source because of the various sources I've seen through my career I've never, never ever seen the contrary posted. I'll be happy to research a variety of sources to reaffirm my statement that sellers with agents make more than they would by owner. It's almost by definition. What is your alarm? Are you on something, dude? Why would sellers list with agents... uuh, to sell and make more money. So, are you trying to say I'm wrong because I did not specify a source? Let's see you stick to your guns, big mouth. Show me where the contrary is true and supported by any source, ANYWHERE. Think before you write. What are you... Mr. Statistics Guy? I simply spoke up about the undeniable truth that the MLS wields great power. What source do you have to refute THAT! Then sell everyone on the fact that MLS services nationwide provide no value after all... "geesh, you can sell for more by owner!!" Perhaps I could choose my words differently but the fact remains ever so clear... the MLS will sell your house faster and for more money, period. You missed the whole point, Dunes. Your mind is out there trying to create conflict... I'll help you out, Dunes. The question remains, "Can the MLS make the seller more money to make up for the costs involved? (Referring to commissions and flat-fee mls entries, etc). That is where the debate properly applies. Put on your reading glasses and don't be so quick to refute your more enlightened peers.
0 votes
Joseph Washi…, Agent, Berwyn, IL
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Hi Holly,

EVERYONE misses the point. A listing with a real estate professional should give you access to the MLS!!!! The Multiple Listing Service is the almighty powerful resource to get your property showed and sold. Still, I find many of the answers herein somewhat humorous... they seem naive. Sure, For Sale by Owner can work. After all, it only takes one seller and one buyer (thank God that has not changed). The single greatest component influencing price (outside of location and condition) is MARKETING... how many will be exposed to your listing. Sure, Trulia and AOL and Yahoo and so on and so on have real estate for sale nationwide. They can get MILLIONS of prospects for real estate. They cannot TARGET market the way your MLS does. Any existing MLS has large numbers of hungry agents with prospective buyers in their little black books waiting for the right home to come on the market. When yours does, they call and schedule appointments and they're off to the races- competing with other agents to be the first to SELL your listing. Everything priced right for TODAY'S market looking good and easy to show is a very saleable listing... that hasn't changed. Don't let all of the negative hype convince you that selling by owner saves you costs. Remember, the highest prices are obtained by Realtors utilizing the full strength of the MLS. This will help you to get your highest and best price. I am so convinced of this REALITY that I look for signs of evidence. First, you will ALWAYS see ten to twenty times the number of listings for sale in the Real Estate classifieds than you will By Owner ads. Second, most By Owners sell for LESS than they would had they used a Realtor. So, you really just need to do your homework and limit your listing fees and costs. All other marketing is just supplemental. Best regards in your real estate pursuits!
0 votes
Catherine "C…, Agent, Metuchen, NJ
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Hi Holly,

It all depends on your own circumstances. That's the short answer to your question...
You can do it yourself and save money or hire the services of someone else and pay for it...
Whichever decision you make, make sure it is an INFORMED decision as a lot is at stake.
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Few options

Do you have flat fee listing agents which can save you $1000's at closing?

FSBO you must follow the state statues sale a home if you don't could be sued by buyer, and state if you fail comply with regulations.

Best be safe than sued

National Featured Realtor and Consultant, Texas Mortgage Loan Officer, Credit Repair Lecturer
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Lynn911
Lynn911

http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
I'm basically a fan of hiring the best people you can for the job, and if you happen to be that person, then you certainly should hire yourself.

Now, if you're not the best person, but you're pretty capable, then you can try to sort out the value of "upgrading" to the best.

And if you just want to do it, then, it doesn't much matter then - life is short, you're not hurting anybody, have at it.
0 votes
Jeff K, Home Buyer, Bristol, PA
Fri Jan 8, 2010
@ Joan,

>> By the way, Jefferson, have you ever considered becoming an.....agent?

Good heavens! What would make you write that in an open forum? Do you wish to have throngs of angry "Jefferson haters" at your door with wooden stakes and torches? :-)

I've never seriously considered that path for myself. I certainly could do it and be good at it, but I'm already in sales and am pretty successful in my field.

Real Estate interests me in many ways, and I love helping people. So, Trulia is a nice outlet for me to share my viewpoint, and once in a while to actually share something that has the patina of experience but is probably just well-polished BS.

Being a landlord has been very rewarding, except for one nasty sewer issue, and I'd like to continue building out in that direction and buy another investment property this year. I think getting my own license would probably limit my options as an investor, and it would certainly limit my "allowed viewpoints".
0 votes
Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Fri Jan 8, 2010
If you are selling for financial reasons such as the mortgage being unaffordable and if so have you looked at refinancing, loan modifications, etc--, be very careful and possibly consider a short sale, if your finances don't allow you to stay --you say you don't have much equity in the house--was it bought at peek, I wonder---just keep in mind that home is worth what someone is willing to pay for it; it doesn’t matter what the seller “needs” or potential buyers can afford to spend. Market conditions do matter as does the immediacy for a transaction to take place. In setting a price, it is in the seller’s best interest to focus on the current market conditions--make sure you price it on target right from the beginning--don't worry about being able to negotiate with a buyer--if you're overpriced, you won't have anybody to negotiate with-- make sure it shows well--neat, clean and clutter free and don't forget exterior curb appeal.

Anna
0 votes
Joan Braunsc…, , Morris County, NJ
Fri Jan 8, 2010
I see nothing wrong with selling the home yourself, but only if you are willing to spend the time to educate yourself on the whole process so that you go into this with your eyes wide open.
See Dan, not ALL agents!
I honestly have no clue about Wisconsin real estate and what's customary and mandatory but make sure YOU know. Do people use real estate attorney's? Or perhaps title companies? What paperwork and certifications are involved? I am sure there are a ton of resources online to help you make a checklist of the whole process from start to finish.
I really think listing on the MLS is mandatory in this competitive environment. In NJ, FSBOs use a transaction broker, basically someone you pay a flat fee to put your listing on the MLS. See what you can do in your state.
You will most likely need to offer to pay a commission to the successful buyer's agent.
Do your homework, read all of rockinblu's blogs, and as much as you can about FSBOs in your area. I would encourage you to make it clear to the buyer's agent that you are knowledgeable and know what needs to be done because some agents are nervous about taking their buyers to FSBOs - they sometimes end up doing an uneducated seller's side of things in order to get the deal closed.
Also, keep in mind that buyer's and their agents may expect to split the commission savings with you and even if its not stated outright, it may be reflected in their offer price. It probably depends on how well you price your home and pricing slightly below your competition will be very much to your advantage.
I'm sorry, I'm not sure I really added anything you don't already know and haven't been told but whatever you decide to do, I wish you the best of luck!

By the way, Jefferson, have you ever considered becoming an.....agent?
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Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Fri Jan 8, 2010
Holly,

There are may reasons that would justify either position but unless you are in a position to price the home right, develop and implement an effective marketing plan, and spend the time needed your best choice may be to list the property with a real estate professional.

By doing a FSBO first you may be just delaying the sale of the home and creating an even greater distance between your home's price and what the current local RE market will bear.

Our recommendation is to meet with several local agents to find out what they can do for you......Remember....the market is not based on your personal needs.....the property needs to be priced right, to sell.

Good luck
The Eckler Team
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Sam Shueh, , San Jose, CA
Thu Jan 7, 2010
Interview a few agents asking them if they can give you a discount. May be you just need a MLS and a lock box.
You will do the open house.....Let the agent negotiate the price for you.
0 votes
Aaron Catt, Agent, Meridian, ID
Thu Jan 7, 2010
Sounds like your in a tough spot just like many people.

Whether or not you wind up trying to sell your home on your own, you probably should seek the consultation of a Realtor. Without a Realtor, where are you going to get accurate market data? Not here unfortunately. As nice as Trulia is, you need to have an agent give you a Comparable Market Analysis (CMA). They are free and there is no obligation.

You may want to get 2 or 3 from different agents and compare them, but keep in mind, a lot of agents just want a listing, so they may tell you what you want to hear.

A good CMA should include AT LEAST 3 sold comparable homes, 3 active comparable homes and 3 pending comparable homes.

You should also get a market snapshot of your area so that you can see if there are going to be distressed properties having a downward effect on pricing etc.

While it is possible to sell your own home, the value of a Realtor who works hard is difficult to beat.

We do it daily and know the ropes and we are available when people need us. Getting your own home ready to sell is going to be difficult enough without having to show the home, try to negotiate offers and terms and all of the other little things that for sale by owners forget about.

If you need help finding a few good Realtors in your area let me know, I can help you take out the guesswork.

Thanks,

Aaron
208-724-7602
0 votes
Polly Briley, , 28607
Thu Jan 7, 2010
Holly,

An agent is a specialist in several areas, real estate, marketing, advertising, communication, staging and sales. This includes being knowledgeable and experienced in social marketing. A realtor is also not emotionally attached to your home and can see it without all your fond memories.

It is always possible to sell your own home. A few years ago all you had to do was say home for sale and it sold. Today it is a lot harder and requires aggressive tactics and patience.

You will want to find a realtor who is experienced in today's communication methods. Ask for details on how they are going to market and promote your home. Ask to see campaigns they produced for other clients. Check out their website, would you use them to help you purchase a home?

I wish you great luck.

Polly Briley
RE/MAX On The Water
920-203-1155
polly@pollybriley.com
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Ana Ojeda, Agent, San Antonio, TX
Thu Jan 7, 2010
The best answer a REALTOR can give you is to use our services since you will be represented and informed at all times. I am not from your area, but I can speak for the REALTORS in your area that you can always negotiate commissions and work with your REALTOR to see what pricing and marketing options you will have.

You need to expose your home to all home buyers and specially now that the buyer market is a boom then you need to have your home out there as much as possible and if you do a for sale by owner, you are limited to just a few buyers in your area, most buyers seek a REALTOR to buy a home and you want us to bring you that buyer when we find your home listed on your city's MLS.

Hope I helped you a little to make your decision, but truly you will see the value when you list with a proffessional. There are many aspects of a sale that need to be taken into consideration when you transfer the home to the new buyer and those can only be reviewed by an experience agent and escrow agent as well.
Good luck and a quick sale..!

http://www.anaojeda.com
210-861-6381
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Kirk Dirksen, , Sioux Falls, SD
Thu Jan 7, 2010
If I were you I would begin interviewing agents. Studies have shown that sellers put more money in their pocket by using a Realtor and paying the commissions than buy going at it alone. A realtor can help you with setting the price according to what your local market dictates, and also help you in the negotiations. Another advantage of using an agent is that they have access to MLS which could put your home in front of hundreds of other agents who are working with buyers. If the commission is your biggest problem with realtors consider adding a discount broker agent to the list of agents that you interview. Keep an open mind and ask a lot of questions, find out what services they offer and what they charge for them. Finally, you always have the final word on whether or not to accept an offer.
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Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Thu Jan 7, 2010
This is one of those things where I feel, if you have to ask whether you can do it yourself, the answer is, probably not.

The secret - don't tell anyone, now, Holly, OK? - the secret to hiring an agent is that you need to hire someone who provides value. If you could do it yourself, that's one thing. But if they can do it better . . .
0 votes
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