Pit falls of For Sale By Owner

Everyone likes to save money and get a deal. The promise of this is the driving force behind the private sale housing market. As a full time REALTOR I see the private sale signs pop up on a regular basis and typically one of 2 things happen, the private sale sign is replaced by a Brokerage sign or about 3% of the time the house sells, very often by a REALTOR representing the buyer. 

It has been my experience that most private sales start with an unrealistic price and drive away potential buyers who would have otherwise purchased but won't make an offer as they don't want to "waste their time" or "insult the seller".  Adding to this concern are the many stories of buyers who bought privately and overpaid for the property to find a few years down the road when they go to sell themselves that they can't get their money back out.

The increasing number of options for sale by owners and the many prepay plans, pay first regardless of results, that offer Internet  and web based services do get some exposure however under the traditional real estate system buyers typically don't pay the real estate fees so they choose to work with agents to protect them. I have worked with many buyers who have sold privately as they recognize the value that a full service REALTOR brings and costs them nothing. I have sold many private sale properties and the owners always pay a compensation to my brokerage because they are so happy to have a qualified buyer and a professional offer that protects both parties. Most agents won't deal with FSBO's as they can be difficult and extra work so they just show properties that are listed removing these qualified buyers from the pool looking at a private sale property.

Many people "just want to try for a while" to save the costs but quickly realize the amount of work and inconvenience that is really involved in dealing with complete strangers, letting them into their homes and trying to get an offer that will close. I always look at FSBO signs as help wanted ads and have worked with many people to get their house sold using my advanced marketing techniques and strong negotiating skills maximizing the sale price of their house by exposing it to all the buyers, and their agents, in the market.

It's great to save money just make sure that's what your really doing and that the savings worth the headache and risk involved in working in an industry that you may have little or no recent experience in. Step 1 is contact a highly qualified full time agent like myself and get a big picture view of how best to market and sell your property and if you decide to go it on your own, good luck... I may just have a buyer for your place too.