The thought of selling a home For Sale by Owner (FSBO) can be intriguing. You may assume that you’ll clear more money from the sale by not having to pay real estate commission. Homeowners also think that they have more control over prospective buyers dropping by for a showing. However, there are some distinct disadvantages of the FSBO arrangement, which it’s important for home sellers to know.
The FSBO approach involves a homeowner selling a home without the representation of a real estate agent or entity that provides support during the selling process. Below, we’ll discuss a few of these disadvantages and dive into other options available in today’s home-selling landscape.
Selling a house is widely considered one of the few times when DIY is rarely the smart choice. The FSBO route can be more time consuming and expend much more energy than using an agent. The turnaround time for selling yourself instead of engaging assistance is often longer, and you may lose out on top-dollar sales if you are not familiar with how to properly price your home. The number of mistakes and missteps made by the homeowner can severely outweigh any benefit of the FSBO approach to selling a home.
Reasons to Avoid Selling FSBO
The FSBO trend continues to decline, and there are many reasons to avoid selling FSBO, time being the biggest factor.
Unless you have a real estate background, there’s a very steep learning curve when it comes to staging, listing, and marketing properties for sale. You could find yourself spending hundreds of hours getting your home in listing shape, only to discover you’ve overlooked a key factor.
Without the support of those who understand real estate, you’ll be the one responsible for various tasks a real estate professional would typically handle. Everything from scheduling showings, hosting open houses, communicating with buyers and their agents, and handling the administrative work will be your responsibility. Keeping your home showing-ready 24/7 can be exhausting, and playing host to dozens of non-serious buyers or nosy neighbors is often discouraging, especially if you’re hoping for a quick sale.
As an alternative to the agent scenario, utilizing an online marketplace such as Sundae.com where investors are presented with your property and selling is an as-is process with fail-safes along the way can mitigate much of the headache that comes with FSBO sales.
“When homeowners are eager to sell a home and take on the task without professionals guiding them through the process, the result is often disastrous, and sales become acts of desperation, void of reason and objectivity,” says a representative of Sundae.com, one of the nation’s leading off-market selling platform for homes. “With options and alternatives for a quick sale with less drama and a fair price, sellers win at the closing table and can focus on the future.”
Disadvantages of FSBO Home Sale
The disadvantages of the FSBA approach to home sales are various and point toward the same conclusion—without the help of a professional or the support of a well-established real estate platform, the road to a home sale is treacherous and often ends in disappointment.
You Won’t Get Competitive Offers
Even though an agent will take a commission, the higher sales price an agent can achieve can pay for this commission—and then some. Other agents are less likely to take FSBO sellers seriously, and they may even caution their clients to avoid making offers on these homes, knowing that the closing process is more likely to be subject to delays and miscommunications.
You’re at High Risk of Underestimating the Market
If you’re not in the real estate business, adhering to broad rules of thumb could cost you money. For example, many will advise that it’s best to list a property in spring, as this is when most buyers tend to be looking. Listing a property in the fall or winter could mean it will take longer to sell or that the offers you’ll get will be lower. But as last year showed us, these rules don’t always apply. Some hot markets remained on fire throughout the winter, fetching higher sales prices than the summer before.
Closing Can Be Complicated
Even if you already have a prospective buyer lined up, representation and vetting of that buyer can be invaluable when it comes to handling paperwork, conducting title searches, and getting everything in order for the closing. If you make a mistake while FSBO, you’re on your own.
You Won’t Need to Shell Out Funds Up Front
Listing agents and marketplace platforms don’t get paid until your home is sold, which provides two advantages: first, the seller isn’t out any funds at the outset; and second, the agent or representative party has a vested interest in selling your home for the highest possible price. If you list your home FSBO, you may incur thousands of dollars in cleaning, repair, and staging expenses before you get your first prospective buyer.
Marketing Can Be Tough
Even with social media marketplaces, the most effective place to list a home for sale is the multiple listing service (MLS) or a unique selling marketplace. On a platform where novices and self-selling homeowners are abundant, you’ll find it tough to get much traction among the other homes for sale. Taking advantage of professional platforms designed to profile and sell homes puts your for-sale property before the right audience.
Alternatives to FSBO
The alternatives to For-Sale-By-Owner selling are growing and connecting with buyers and investors to get the best offer is becoming the optimal selling solution. An as-is sale through a marketplace like Sundae.com brings investors to the table, creating competition for your home while avoiding the showing and open house processes. Remember, there are many as-is companies and you should search online to make sure that the company that you are working with is sound. With 100s of positive Sundae.com reviews they are the only ones with such a sophisticated platform where sellers can have an opportunity to allow multiple buyers to bid one your property. Discard the FSBO notions and embrace alternatives that alleviate strain, stress and hardship as you sell your home.