Homeowners who have decided to sell their home may think that one of the best approaches is simply to put up a “for sale by owner” sign in the front yard. After all, this means they don’t have to pay a Realtor any commission, plus they have absolute control over the entire selling process.
However, while this may seem like a good idea at first, it rarely works out the way the seller plans. Instead, they often find their home sitting on the market for much longer, and when they do get an offer, it may be for less than they wanted.
Real estate agents don’t get paid a commission just to put their name on the for sale sign. They do a lot of work to sell a home quickly, but without their expertise, a property is likely to sit unsold for months.
The Dangers of DIY Real Estate
There are many things where the DIY approach works fine, but selling a house is not one of them. There are a number of dangers inherit in DIY real estate, including financial dangers that can leave the homeowner losing much more money than anticipated.
Selling their own home involves doing more than just putting a for sale sign in the front yard. It also means the seller has to do some or all of the following:
- Advertise the property
- Conduct showings
- Be home to allow the inspector and appraiser in
- Answer any and all questions about the property
- Understand the legal contracts involved
- Negotiate with the buyer
These are just a few of the things the homeowner would have to deal with. In many cases, the buyers would have their own agent, too, which would put the seller at a disadvantage when it comes to negotiating a good deal.
For Sale by Owner Sellers Don’t Have Access to Certain Resources
When a homeowner sells their home themselves, they’re basically taking on the task of an entire real estate agency. They have to do the marketing, arrange staging, find any contractors needed, and much more.
A real estate agent, on the other hand, has a whole team behind them. They have contacts such as professional photographers, online marketing specialists, and other experts who not only take on some of the work required to sell a house quickly but also have the tools needed to do that work effectively.
They also have access to resources such as the MLS, a national listing of all homes for sale. Homeowners who are selling their house on their own can’t list their property on this online tool, so other agents won’t be able to find it when they search the database.
Finding a Great Realtor
Finding the best Realtor can take a little bit of time. Like finding any expert, homeowners will want to do some research to determine which agent in their area is truly best for them. Some agents specialize in certain areas or in types of homes. For example, homeowners who have a home in an historic district will want to work with an agent familiar with these older houses.
Sellers will want to read reviews, talk to friends and family, and meet with the agent before hiring them. Once they have found an agent they feel comfortable with, however, they will have a valuable ally on their side.