For Sale By Owner - Tips for FSBO in Selling Your Home
Excerpt from cheap car tires
Selling on your own is tough.
There are several reasons for selling your house yourself. Some that
make sense; some that don’t make sense. I’ve even taken this route
myself, with mixed results. I am a do-it-yourselfer, so I understand
that too, maybe that’s a driving force for you.
Well, let me give you a
Pricing. Don’t take your neighbors word on what things sold for. Don’t
use other people’s asking price for setting your price. Find out solid
info on recent sales. Roughly same SF, beds, baths, degree of updates,
etc. Don’t fudge here. Today’s buyers know prices, you can’t overprice.
Decide whether you will work with Realtors. If your house does sell,
there is 90 % chance it will be thru a local Realtor, so why ignore
Ask callers if they are pre-qualified or pre-approved for loan. Don’t waste your time on “lookers.”
Make a great flyer. Potential buyers may scribble down your number, but
they won’t remember what it was for by the time they get home. If you
work with realtors, say so on the flyer. (This typically means you will
pay a reduced commission.) Make it easy for buyers to reach you – phone and email.
Get the “house
for sale” on the Internet. There are FSBO sites, discount brokerages,
etc. It MUST be on the net. Make a video (use Animoto). Post it on
YouTube.com, CraigsList.com, etc. These social network sites are the
rage now. Google loves them and gives priority ranking to them. Being on
MLS is best, but then you must agree to work with
Newspaper ads? This is better for a Seller than a Realtor. You might
run an ad in a major paper like the Post Dispatch. I have more effective ways to advertise. If it works, I do
it. The community papers like Suburban Journals, are good for specific types and prices of homes. A
West University Home For Sale, a Garden Oaks Home For Sale, a Spring
Branch Home For Sale…these are all different markets. They need
different marketing venues.
Answer your phone! Buyers WON’T call back.
Make it easy for Houston homebuyers to reach you, not difficult.
it available to see. “I can only show from 2-4 on Saturday” won’t work.
Do you want to sell it or not? Don’t be pissed off with no-shows. That
is the nature of people; don’t try to change it. Concentrate on what you
do have control over.
Don’t be vague and hesitant. Know what price you want and whether you
will do owner finance. Know what closing costs are. Know lender
requirements, interest rates, down payment required. If you are going to
be a Realtor, be a knowledgeable one. Find a lender who will help you.
Have contract forms available. Do capture phone numbers to follow up later. Have Seller Disclosure & Lead Notice (Pre 1978) filled out.
Don’t fib on those disclosure forms. There are some cases where these
not necessary, but in general, you must provide them. (Estate sales,
foreclosures are 2 examples). Ignorance is no defense.
Make that house sparkle! Turn off the TV when you show it. Get the
family out. Buyers will feel like they are intruding if your family is
there. See my post on prepping your house for sale.
Follow up with potential buyers. They say they will call you back…they
won’t! You call them!
Decide on a time period. If you don’t sell in 30
or 60 days, is it time to bring in a professional? If your house is vacant, try open houses. This is a low-key way for people to see your house.
Do talk to realtors. This may seem self-serving (and it is, but it is
helpful to you too). We show houses all the time; we know the market; we
know the competition; we know if you have it priced too high or low.
Talk to us. We don’t bite.
What about those ugly little homemade signs? House for Sale Cheap;
Houston Heights Home For Sale by Owner. These tacky homemade signs work
(for certain homes) because people think they are dealing with an
unsophisticated seller. You know; the blank little corrugated signs
written on with Magic Marker? This is a great trick (Oops-marketing
tactic) for getting potential buyers to think that the seller is
clueless; that he doesn’t know how to market; and most importantly to
think…maybe I can get a bargain. This would not be a good approach on a
$500K house; but maybe below $200K. I know a lot of real estate
investors who do this. It works.
Finally, there are people & companies set up specifically to help
FSBO’s. I don’t know much about them except they can provide flyers,
signs, put on MLS, etc. If you are going to pay for all this, you might
as well use a full service Realtor.
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