Chances Are You've Thought About For Sale By Owner

We know that it is tempting to try to save the real estate commission earned by a real estate agent by selling your property yourself. So, if you decide to market your own property, we invite you to consider the following steps that you must take in order to save the real estate commission.

1) Conduct Your Own Mini-Walkthrough

Make notes of all items that need repair or improvement. Your checklist might include:

  • Fresh, clean paint throughout.
  • Clean windows and window coverings throughout.
  • Well-manicured lawn and yard.
  • Plumbing and all appliances in working order.
  • New or cleaned carpet.
  • All sealants (window, tub, shower, sink, etc.) in good condition.
  • Roof and gutters in good condition; no repair needed.

2) Make All Necessary Repairs

Make all necessary repairs and improvements before you begin to advertise your property.

3) Do Your Research

Carefully research information regarding the prices and terms of sales in today’s real estate market. Investigate recent sale prices for property similar to yours in your immediate area. Then establish a realistic price for your property based on that information.

4) Determine Your Financial Alternatives

Meet with local lenders and determine financing alternatives for your prospective buyers.

5) Investigate The Internet

Determine which Internet sites, newspapers and home magazines, etc., will best advertise your property. Call them for rates and deadlines.

6) Establish A Budget

Establish an advertising budget. Prepare a contingency advertising budget in case your home does not sell as quickly as you anticipate.

7) Prepare A Professional Ad

Prepare a professional, attention-getting advertisement that will attract the right buyers to your property. Place your ad in the newspaper(s). Upload your information and photos to the Internet.

8) Target Out-Of-Town Buyers

Prepare a plan to reach those out-of-town buyers who account for a major portion of today’s home purchasers.

9) Purchase An Outdoor Yard Sign

Purchase an eye-catching and weatherproof yard sign; install it in the front of your property.

10) Advertise Your Open House

Purchase special “open house” signs and position them in paths that lead from main roads or thoroughfares, through the neighborhoods and to the property. Put these signs out each time you hold an open house (and be sure to take them down after each open house).

11) Prepare A Fact Sheet

Prepare a “feature/benefit” fact sheet outlining specific features of your home and the corresponding benefits to prospective purchasers.

12) Schedule Open Houses

Schedule and conduct open house weekdays as well as open house weekends. Make your property more inviting by placing freshly cut flowers in several rooms. You might burn scented candles in the living room, kitchen and baths. The aroma of freshly baked bread or cookies also adds to the ambiance of your property.

13) Always Be Available

Be available at all times so that you can walk through the property with prospective buyers to answer their questions and offer information about local schools, parks, transportation, shopping, places of worship, etc.

14) Respond Promptly To Inquiries

Respond to telephone and e-mail requests for information in a timely manner. Learn how to separate the “lookers” from qualified buyers. Ask for names and phone numbers and be sure to follow up with telephone calls.

15) Be Prepared To Negotiate

Be prepared to negotiate with the buyer(s) as though you are an impartial third party. Remain calm and refrain from any emotional outburst that might spoil a sale.

16) Gather All The Proper Forms

Obtain all forms necessary for the legal sale of real property such as:

  • Deposit Receipt and Offer To Purchase
  • Buyer’s Cost Sheet
  • Seller’s Disclosure Form In our increasingly litigious society, it is imperative that all known defects be disclosed to the buyer(s)

17) Determine Your Financing

Determine the type(s) of financing that you are willing to consider, such as:

  • FHA
  • VA
  • Seller Carryback First Loan
  • Conventional Loan with Seller
  • Carryback Second Loan
  • “Wrap Around” Loan

18) Negotiate The Final Terms Of Sale

Negotiate with the buyer(s) all final terms of the sale including price, financing, inspections, date of closing, date of possession and other pertinent considerations.

19) Plan A Final Walk-Through

Plan a final walk-through with the buyer(s) before the settlement process is complete in order to resolve any disputes. Have a witness present.

20) Locate And Negotiate Your New Home

While you are marketing your current property, locate and negotiate to purchase your next home. Attempt to schedule both transactions so that they close simultaneously. In this way, you and the buyer are able to move at the same time.

I'm Here For You

Many people are very comfortable in the role of “For Sale By Owner.” You may find that you are one of those people. Whether you choose to take on the task of selling your property alone or prefer to work with a real estate sales professional, I will be happy to help you at any stage of your homeselling process. Don’t hesitate to contact me… even if you just have some questions.