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Heidi Johnson, Realtor, ePro Certified & Notary is Proudly Serving the Houston, Texas Area & the Surrounding Suburbs. Personalized Customer Service for YOU! Call/Text 832-603-9111 or email: Call me now.

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For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Tips, Pros and Cons

Choosing to put your home up for sale by owner (FSBO) is your decision, and many people do indeed sell without using a real estate agent. However, before you stick a "for sale by owner" sign in the front lawn, be aware of the advantages and disadvantages of this option.

FSBO Financial Considerations

If you elect to advertise your home FSBO, you avoid paying real estate commissions, which often run as high as 6 percent of the final price. However, most buyers viewing a home for sale by owner are aware that you won't be paying real estate agent commissions, which can lead to low offers.

With FSBO, you'll be responsible for all advertising costs and will have to handle home appraisals, land title searches and other paperwork yourself, all of which can cost time and money.

Can Real Estate Agents and FSBO Co-Exist?

When you place your home for sale by owner, you can accept offers from real estate agents to show your home, increasing your chances of making a sale. However, real estate agents expect a commission if the house sells due to their efforts. You'll probably be asked to sign a "one-time show" agreement, preventing you from negotiating directly with the real estate agent's client.

FSBO and Showing Your Home

Before you advertise your home for sale by owner, decide whether or not you're willing to commit the necessary time and gain the necessary information to complete the transaction on your own. Remember, a real estate agent is expected to work weekends and evenings when most people are free to view homes. You may have to show the house with little notice, as people spot the "for sale by owner" sign and pull into your driveway without an appointment.

Any home for sale by owner generates a certain amount of viewings by people who aren't really interested in buying. They may be just looking, which can be a waste of your time. Also, listing a home for sale by owner increases your chance of attracting potential buyers who don't qualify for financing. You may not know this until well into the real estate contract.

FSBO versus Real Estate Listings

Consider how well you'll be able to advertise your home for sale by owner. While real estate agents can access MLS listings and other advertising sources, you'll probably be limited to advertising you home for sale through the local newspapers, on the Internet and through word of mouth.

Note from Heidi Johnson: Here at Coldwell Banker United Realtors, we do advertising nationally as well as local.  Along with multiple lines across the internet co-oping with other agencies, newsapaper, virtual tours.  We spend the money up front, so you don't have too.