I have been publishing this magazine and column for more than 10 years. In that time I have continued to hear statements about the For Sale by Owner market from sellers, buyers, and agents that are not quite true. Some are distortions, others are simple misunderstandings about how an average individual buys or sells a home without an agent.
In the not quite true/distortions category, information was sent to me by some of my advertisers indicating that agents are telling them that less than 10 percent of FSBO sellers succeed. This statement is misleading. While it is true for classified sellers, it does not apply to our FSBO system. In 1996, Dun & Bradstreet conducted a survey that came to the conclusion that when homeowners adequately advertised their homes using publications like the one you’re reading now, and a quality yard sign - their success rate is as high as 80 percent or more. But, if they relied on newspaper classified advertising only and used a cheap hardware store sign, their success rates were, yes, LESS THAN 10 PERCENT!
Likewise, agents sometimes bombard sellers with helpful hints and "how-to" information designed to make the process of selling a home seem overly complicated. A recent article in an industry magazine, REAL ESTATE TODAY written by Chip Morrison, actually listed 14 points that can be used to discourage FSBO sellers and lead to "agent listings". I address a few of them in this section.
The last point I’d like to address from the article is that of the inconvenience you will have to endure by having to be available for showings and having to put up with strangers going through your home. On this point, if you hire an agent, they are going to ask you to leave your home anytime they want to show it or use it. You will have no control or knowledge of who is going through your home.
And most agents use the open house sham to collect names of your buyers to sell them something else. On the other hand, if you don’t hire an agent and do your own showings, you maintain control and can provide more accurate information to prospective buyers. After all, who knows your home better than you? You’re going to be involved in showings one way or the other. With the agent method, you’ll be paying an outrageous commission for the privilege; if you do it yourself, you'll be able to price your property more competitively and with our photo marketing, you're showing it to buyers that have seen in advance what you have for sale, unlike the agent listing that shows a photo of themselves thus attracting non-buyers also!
The point is that you can enlist the services of our experts who do the bulk of the work for you for a very reasonable fee. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish. Plan to invest between $1,000 and $2,000 for successful marketing. Sure you'll invest a few thousand, but the total will be no where near the $58,200 (average) a 6% commission will cost you.
Smart sellers are using our successful FSBO System.