Selling your home on your own can be very difficult, especially if it’s your first time. When you have a “For Sale By Owner” sale, you don’t have a real estate agent on hand to help you through the process of selling. Inman News author and realtor Terry Murphy offers these five tips for FSBO sellers:
1. Make sure you have an accurate appraisal of your home’s value.
You can hire an appraiser to do this, or even check the comparative market analysis (CMA) report for your area. This report will tell you how much your home is worth, based on the property type, neighborhood, and comparable properties. CMA reports should be checked regularly, since the housing market is constantly changing. If you hire an appraiser to determine the value of your property, make sure that you don’t use an estimate that is more than three months old.
2. You’ll have to prepare your home for selling
Even though you may love your home exactly the way it is, quirks and all. However, most buyers might not love your home “as is”. You’ll need to clean, de-clutter, and possibly even update your home. If your appliances are out of date, you might consider replacing them with stainless steel before you list your home. Also, try to de-personalize your home by removing family portraits and the such. This will allow buyers to “look at your home with an eye to how they can make it their own”.
3. Know what’s an acceptable request and what is not
As per the last tip, buyers probably aren’t going to fall in love with every aspect of your home or request to buy it “as is”. So, the buyer will most likely make requests for you to fix things, add things, include things, etc. You’ll need to know what is acceptable and what is not. For instance, a buyer requesting that you replace your perfectly good, modern, working bathtub with a new over the top spa tub, is not really a reasonable request. Requesting that you fix a leaky faucet or pay for a home inspection is not unreasonable.
4. Expect unexpected showings
Without a real estate agent setting up showings for you, you’ll have various buyers showing up at your home at all hours wanting a tour. You don’t have to say yes, of course, especially if the buyer shows up without his or her real estate agent. However, most buyers will want to see a home before they decide to buy, so you should try to be accommodating whenever possible.
5. Buyers will be rude
You should expect that buyers will not be the most grateful or respectful when you’re dealing with them. They probably won’t take off their muddy shoes before they walk through your freshly mopped kitchen, and there’s a good chance they’ll leave trash on your counter tops. Be prepared for this to happen and figure out how to deal with it ahead of time.
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