How To Sell Your House Without A Real Estate Agent?
When you move out of a place, the memories you made in the place you called home linger in the walls. It’s even harder to let go of a house when you put a substantial amount of money into making it look as good as you left it. Are you finally ready to move out and hand over the reins to a real estate agent to handle the sale?
Having a real estate agent might make the sale go smoother, but remember that they also take a commission from ensuring the sale goes through. Not sure you can manage? Here are a few tips to selling your lovely home without the help of a real estate agent:
1. Prepare Your House to Be Marketed
If you are going to be selling your home, expect faces you are not familiar with walking through the hallways of what might be their next dwelling. The best way to prepare is to store furniture and decorations that are not vitally important to everyday living.
It is recommended that a third of all items be removed before a house is considered ready to be shown.
Clean every nook and cranny you may have neglected until now. Wipe down the hallway walls, the kitchen counters and degrease the inside of your oven if you plan on leaving it. Don’t forget to do some basic landscaping so that the lawn and trees people first see are presentable.
2. Price Your Home Competitively, to Sell
If you are not sure what to set your home’s price at, scour the internet for the market average of “For Sale by Owner” homes. Examine homes with similar amenities and square footage.
Think about why you bought the home yourself and factor those traits into the possible listing price.
3. Get a Flat Fee Listing from the Multiple Listing Service
The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is an encyclopedic listing of all real estate property currently for sale. It is not only accessible to real estate agents, but also to those looking to buy.
There are a few services that may charge hundred dollar fees to list your property on the MLS, but it’s possible to find a local place that charges a small flat fee. Besides, even if your property isn’t initially listed on the national MLS, it could eventually feed the listings posted on the Zillow website.
4. Market Your Property
There’s more to marketing a property besides simple listings on an MLS. Go above and beyond to do your own marketing. Invest in “for sale” signs, print out brochure, advertise online where there’s an opportunity, and perhaps look into building a website to bring in offers. FSBO.com is a great place for homeowners looking for a similar type of set-up.
The supplies you pay for are far cheaper than any real estate agent’s fee.
5. Hold an Open House
So many open houses are hosted by real estate agents hired by the homeowners. Save yourself the money and host one yourself. Place signs up and down your street, post online where you know people will see.
The proper etiquette is to have light refreshments available. And considering the smell of cookies isn’t as effective as people believe, scenting your house with scents like citrus, pine, and basil can generate more interest from prospective buyers.
6. Know the Selling Points of Your Property
It’s important to consider what your selling points are so they can be part of your brochures. How many rooms and shower/baths does the house have? What’s the total square footage?
Don’t forget to mention the total lot size and other details one might consider special. Are there marble counter-tops or an advanced set of appliances?
7. Negotiate With the Buyer Yourself
Now that you’ve found a buyer the next obstacle is negotiating the price of the property. After a buyer submits a contract, you have the opportunity to either accept the offer being given or change the contract and give your own offer.
States do offer ‘standard’ real estate contracts, but they should also be examined by a lawyer.
8. Be Sure to Comply With All Laws in Your Area
Law may vary by location, but one that applies everywhere is the Fair Housing Act. It prevents discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin and other reasons. Before signing on the dotted line, have your contract(s) reviewed by an attorney to make sure everything related to the sale is in accordance with your local and state real estate laws
9. Pick the Right Time to Sell Your Home
Statistically, the spring and summer are the best times to put one’s house on the market. Because that time is so popular for everyone, selling at the very beginning or very end of those seasons would be best.