Selling Your Home – FSBO – Is it Time For a Total Shock and Awe Marketing Campaign For Your Home?

In today’s over-crowded real estate market to pull out all the stops when creating a marketing campaign for your home. You need to use every marketing means available.

You need to overwhelm the market with information about your property. If you don’t your home is likely to get lost in the sea of other properties on the market. You might want professional help for planning out your campaign, or else do a lot of reading to get knowledgeable on real estate marketing.

The first thing you will learn is that there are literally dozens of places to advertise your home-for-sale website. You will also learn that many of them are free to use if you comply with the website terms.

The only cost to advertise on these sites is the time to register at the site and set up your property advertisement. It may be more efficient to hire somebody to do this for you because there is a learning curve in working with all these websites out there for you to advertise on.

The same is true for other places online you can list information about your property for sale. By this I mean social bookmarking sites, social networking sites, blogs, forums and directories. There are more of these than you think, i.e., dozens of each kind that are available to you.

Then there is the non-internet advertising media. There are more of these than you think too. People think there are only two newspapers in Maryland (in Baltimore and Annapolis) but there are actually 36. The same for magazines and free distribution “shopper” type papers for classified ads.

The thing you won’t want to do is blow a lot of your money on one or two expensive ads (like a display ad in the Washington Post, for example). Every dollar you spend has to be analyzed to give you the most “bang for the buck” in terms of exposure, readership, and traffic.

Paying an internet marketing consultant with expertise in real estate marketing will give you access to dozens of free (or very cheap) advertising vehicles, and this will cost less than some expensive ads can cost.

Internet marketing even allows you to set up “word of mouth” advertising campaigns, which can be the most effective. There are dozens of paid advertisement websites online also, including Google, which now gives local real estate search results.

Some For Sale By Owner Guidelines

Selling your home via the FSBO method has some particular areas of concern for the home owner that should be understood before the sale process begins. When selling your home yourself you are essentially un-insulated from the potential buyers. In using a realtor there is a intermediary working between the two parties and that is one thing that FSBO sellers have to learn to do without. This layer of insulation can be handy as it separates the qualified buyers from the lookers. In selling FSBO you should always be sure to qualify potential clients so that you are sure that your time is not being wasted. The easiest way to do this is to require a letter of approval from the buyer’s lender. Don’t be afraid to ask for this as you don’t want to deal with unqualified buyers or just people who happen to be looking. Time is money and in a FSBO sale that concept holds true.

Another good thing to shoot for when selling via FSBO is a professional grade marketing plan. This can be a difficult thing to achieve on a reasonable budget but there are ways to do it. A good place to start is a flat-fee MLS listing. This will ensure that realtors in your area know about your listing and can direct clients towards your home. not having your home listed on the MLS can mean much longer before word gets out about your home and the average sellers would like to see a quick and clean sale. Try inviting the local realtors to an open house. You can make it clear that you aren’t interested in retaining their services, merely that you want them to know that your home is for sale and open to their clients.

One last thing that you should try to remember when showing the home. It may be difficult to remove yourself emotionally from the sale of the home. As difficult as this may seem it is necessary. People may have trouble mentally removing your family from their view of the home. The ideal situation would be a buyer coming into the home and instantly being able to see themselves living there. This may be hard to do if you are recalling the things that happened to you and your family while living there. Try to detach emotionally. I know it’s hard but it will assist the sale greatly.

Real Estate Text Messaging Benefits When Marketing FSBOs

Due to the rising popularity of robust smart phones, real estate agents who utilize text messaging systems can benefit, substantially, from an exposure and lead generation perspective. On a “for sale” sign, your text messaging code can help you share information about properties with people that pass by through a message that sends out detailed property specs and photos. Chances are that the vast majority of passers by who notice a property you’ve listed will have a cell phone and by texting the system right then and there, they can quickly receive detailed listing information on a home. As soon as they do, you’ve gotten a lead that you can follow up with on that property or another listing. Did you know that this could also work to your advantage with FSBO (for sale by owner) properties? Read on to learn how.

Many realtors have realized the potential benefits of marketing through mobile messaging. By subscribing to a real estate industry messaging service, you can market to people via their cell phones. Not only can this tool help you market through properties that you are listing but you can also extend this ability to help you market through properties that you’re not listing. Any realtor that sees a FSBO sign can take that as an opportunity to build their brand and get new leads as well. Approach the homeowner and position the messaging service as a free and valuable marketing tool and you could both benefit.

If you already use real estate text messaging services, you know that it can help you capture new buyer leads. But did you know that you can also use your account on more than just your own listings? By offering use of the service to homeowners attempting to sell their home on their own, this could benefit in several ways:

Build Relationships with FSBO Homeowners

By offering to share your lead generation service for free with FSBO homeowners who don’t have the benefit of marketing and exposure offered by a real estate agent, you can build a relationship that results in business and / or referrals. For example, if the homeowner that is trying to sell without a realtor is unable to sell the property on their own, they may turn to you for assistance later on. It costs you nothing to share your service with the homeowner and in the meantime, if people text for info on the FSBO property and they don’t buy it, they become a lead for you.

Branding

Increased exposure in your area is always good, especially if you’re focused on a community that is highly competitive. People who get text messages from properties on your subscription will learn about you. And, they may or may not choose to look at that FSBO property but even if they do, they may also want to look at other neighborhood listings (that are listed by you). And, if the lead doesn’t already have a buyer’s agent, this is an opportunity for you to extend your services.

Lead capture possibilities of real estate text messaging are substantial. By utilizing this service and by offering use of your service as a free marketing tool to local homeowners, you can increase your exposure, build relationships, and sell more homes.

Real Estate FSBO Scripts

So you have decided to sell your home the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) way. You have already learned the steps necessary for you to do this. What about the things YOU should say to a prospective buyer? What is important for them to know about your home? How do you overcome objections and answer all their questions? The best way for you to do this is to develop a script for yourself. This article will talk about exactly that.

To start with you can listen to the sales pitches of professional real estate agents. They earn a living selling homes, so surely they must have some pretty successful techniques. Then do the same for other successful FSBOs in your neighborhood. In the case of each group, study what they say and the methods they use when preparing their scripts. One way to do the above-mentioned step; without directly encroaching on the jobs of actual real estate agents, is to go online and observe several videos. Combine that with learning about what prospective home buyers for your town are looking for. Study all of that information, then use all of that information to develop a script of your own.

Another thing you can do after you develop your script is practice it. Have your family or friends act as a prospective buyer. Then practice your script on them. Encourage them to play Devil's Advocate with you and ask you all sorts of tough questions. You know the old saying – practice makes perfect! Nowhere is that more true than if you are an FSBO.

Some things you might want to be able to tell a prospect for an FSBO buyer include: is the property you are seeking actually available to you? Sometimes people will forget to take down their signs after it sells. Other times a seller might think they have a deal, but then it falls through at the last minute. Therefore, this is a legitimate question that could be posed to you. You must be prepared to answer it honestly and completely.

Other questions may pertain to the structure, type of property, and your neighborhood. Questions such as: how large is your home? How big is your yard? Is there a Homeowner's Association? What type of community is it? How are the schools there? Again, you must fully answer these questions as related to YOUR home. Better yet, include them in your script to begin with. Then prospective buyers will not need to actually ask them.

A great idea to begin with when it comes to writing an FSBO script is to prepare your skills and knowledge ahead of time. By that I mean – educate yourself! Take a class in selling real estate, or in preparing a real estate pitch. If you lack the time to go to an educational facility, do it over the Internet. At least watch and take notes on pertinent videos. Talk to experts, find out how they are successful. The more education you have on this, the better your chances of success will be.

FSBO Selling & Low-Ball Offers

There are some particular things that happen when selling a home by yourself. You will have to be able to deal with them in a professional manner in order to receive the best price for your home and not be taken advantage of. One of the first things that you will have to deal with is the abundance of calls that you will likely receive from local realtors wanting your business. They will tell you that they can sell your home quickly and for more money, but of course, there is a commission attached to this so it’s in their best interest to get your business. However, if you have planned properly for your sale and have done the necessary market research and are confidant that you can sell your home yourself and save the commission fees then stick to your guns!

Another thing that you may have to deal with is low-ball offers from buyers who think they can get a reduced price simply because you aren’t being represented by an agent. As agents are usually experienced at negotiating, people expect to pay more and have more trouble with getting a lower price. If you have priced your home properly then there should be no need to cut your price down, buyers should realize the value of your home and be willing to meet your price. Be ready for people making low offers in an attempt to find out what your bottom line is. If you receive an offer that is too low for your liking, make a counter-offer that is acceptable to you. Whatever you do, don’t be desperate to move the property. In all likelihood the buyer’s agent will identify this quickly and you will end up losing money in the end.

Don’t sell yourself short in this process, and never settle for an offer that is less than you know the home to be worth. FSBO selling is tricky and there are people out there who will prey on uneducated FSBO sellers. Make sure that you are not one of them.

Is FSBO Safe?

Safety is often raised as an issue in FSBO (For Sale By Owner) real estate sales. Some real estate agents try to scare homeowners into listing with them by claiming that is unsafe. Some homeowners are unsure how to show their property safely.

By taking a few sensible precautions there is no reason why selling your home FSBO should be any less safe than selling through a real estate agent. In fact selling FSBO should be safer. There is nothing that a real estate agent does to vet buyers that FSBO homeowners cannot do for themselves.

What does a real estate agent do?

Real estate agents claim that they vet prospective buyers before they visit your property but what does this mean? Does the real estate agent check whether the buyer has a criminal record for violent crimes or theft? Of course they don't. At best, the agent may get a name, address and contact number of the buyer before they visit.

Getting a contact number for buyers is easy, just ask when the buyer calls to enquire about viewing your property. Before the buyer visits call them back to confirm that they are still coming. This lets you confirm that the contact number is genuine and also reduces the likelihood of no-shows.

FSBO advert contact details

It is advisable to limit the amount of information that you make available through online FSBO advertising. Some homeowners include their full name, telephone numbers, e-mail address, street address of the property for sale and times when they are at home. Whilst including this information is not enough to forge documents such as a passport it is enough to gain unwanted attention from confidence tricksters.

A potential buyer only needs to know your first name to make polite initial contact. There is no need to include your surname and titles in your FSBO advert.

Choose an online advert that protects your email address. There are programs that trawl the web looking for published email addresses. If you post your email address in your FSBO advert you are asking to receive spam.

The better FSBO sites such as http://www.smartvendor.com.au have online messaging systems that allow buyers and sellers to communicate online while keeping email addresses private

When selling your own home a mobile (cell) phone is invaluable. Not only are homeowners less likely to miss a call from a potential buyer but also a potential thief cannot cold call the property to check whether anybody is home.

Open house inspections

We don't recommend holding an open house viewing when selling your property. Open house inspections are hard to supervise and many buyers find viewing a property with lots of other buyers unproductive and frustrating.

Real estate agents use open houses as a way of getting leads about other properties that are for sale. Often the real estate agent will stand at the front of a house to make sure buyers receive details of their agency. But once inside the property buyers are allowed to roam around unsupervised.

Potential thieves can use open house inspections to check out security systems and case the properties if left to roam unsupervised. Don't provide too much detail relating to your home's security system to a buyer on their initial visit.

Common sense rules

When you are holding viewings of your property follow these common sense rules:

Remove all valuables from the property. Take them off site preferably in a safe deposit box. Don't just put them in a drawer.

Make sure there are two people in the property at all times. Ask a friend or family member to accompany you. Only one of you need conduct the viewing.

Keep blinds and curtains open during viewings this allows people outside to see in to the property and will challenging deter somebody thinking of getting up to no good.

Showing your property after dark

Allowing buyers to drop in for viewings without a prior appointment is not recommend and especially not if the buyer is requesting an impromptu viewing after dark. Politely explain that you're happy to show your home during daylight hours, when the buyer can fully appreciate your home's wonderful features. Offer a flyer or information sheet to take away.

FSBO may not be for you

FSBO is not for everybody. In order to sell your own home you must be prepared to show potential buyers around the property. If you are uncomfortable doing this or feel that your circumstances would make you especially vulnerable it would be wise to consider using a traditional real estate agent.

How To Properly Use FSBO SIGNS

My intention in writing this article is to show you how to properly use FSBO signs. For Sale By Owners, FSBO, continually put home-made signs in their yards that they've purchased at local merchants, or chain stores. I'm sure you recognize them by their red and white color scheme and hand-written owner info on them.

The ones that arouse the most curiosity in me are the ones that put so much information on them in that horribly runny, black, felt tipped-pen, ink. You, I'm sure have seen them, they project the owners name, then the owner's phone numbers, followed by the price, followed by any other notations that the owner think passer by motorist and prospects would want to know.

I mean, is this silly, or what, let's consider what the passer by views as they go by:

The more information, the smaller the characters, on the sign, meaning the viewer must have eagle eyes to see it all, even if they stopped in the middle of the street and were able to memorize what they saw, or were at the least able to write down that information on a piece of paper, or pad they carried with them.

How many of your prospects that walk or drive by would be capable of doing that and carrying all that information back to their home, or place they're staying so they might be able to study it and put it to good use? My guess, not many.

The average prospective buyer drives their chosen neighborhoods in search of homes that attract them, initially by their looks from the street, then the looks of that neighborhood, or vise versa. It's a human quality, most humans have. That's where the old adage comes from that, "You Never Get A Second Chance To Make A First Impression".

People will be very judgmental on that first look, no matter what they're seeing for the first time, so let's be very frank in our discussions of yard signs!

A yard sign is ONLY the second thing that people notice, coming by your home, their first impression, good, bad, or indifferent, IS your home and ONLY if they are impressed by it, will they pay ANY attention to your yard sign.

Now then, as to your yard sign, it should be about 2 'X 3', in size (that's about the size of a real estate company signs). And rather than the paper, or card board signs those local and national merchants try to sell you that you can then use your magic marker on and watch sun-fade, or bleed through til it's unrecognizable, call on a local sign maker, or print shop (or even shop them on the internet, you can find everything else there) and order a custom corrugated plastic sign with vinyl lettering from them.

For that size sign, real estate companies will pay generally $ 20 – $ 40. on an individual basis, that will include a metal stake that holds the sign to the ground.

That price might vary, company to company and state to state, but if you look hard enough, those prices can be found, by the individual.

Now that you have a sign, let's discuss what would be advantageous to put on it?

The potential buyers WILL be impressed by your home, lest they wouldn't be looking for more information about it, but unlike the sign, I talked about in the beginning, don't overload it with content!

The most effective signs, I know that receive the most amount of activity are ones that have less information on them (less is more in this case) and rather than red & white, black letters on a yellow background field are the most eye catching.

On that yellow background, put, only the words:

QUICK SALE ON THIS HOME SAVES MONEY

ALL INQUIRES WELCOME

http: Facebook.com/pinewoodcove

(YOUR HOME'S STREET ADDRESS)

Cell # 555-555-5555

Now this information offers much more information:

  • You'd like to sell your home quickly
  • The more rapid the sale, the more money the buyer saves
  • It states, every buyer is welcome, including, real estate agents (you're prepared to pay a commission for their buyers, as well as buyers, without the benefit of a real estate agent (think investors, roaming the neighborhoods).
  • put a website address up, ie, Facebook, or any other similar one that allows you to put pictures on, that you can direct people to & be sure there are pictures on it of the inside of your home to show them and they can refer others back to. At the VERY LEAST, put your email address in this place, so that they can contact you without you need to be home.
  • And most importantly, offer them a phone # (preferably a cell #) for the interested prospects to call for whatever information is pertinent to them.

All that other information is irrelevant, if that prospect is curious enough to have questions that need answered and willing enough to make a simple phone call, or write an email, or got to that website page to satisfy themselves of their answers.

Be prepared, if the prospect can close their offer (hand you the money and close the deal at a lawyerer's office, or abstract company) within 2 weeks ( put in your own time-line here, an all cash sale closing by an abstract company can take as little time as 2, or 3 days ). For that "quick sale" be prepared to offer that buyer a 2 – 5% ( fill in your own% here, from your negotiated selling price ), but realize that for this benefit to you, 5% is not an outrageous benefit to give to the buyer.

Without this "quick sale" let the prospect know what price ( your list price ) you would want to sell your home for.

There are other common questions that can be answered over the phone and by writing the answers down, after the first few calls, on a sheet of paper, it will serve you well in being able to quickly answer any future calls.

Some, but not all of those common questions might be:

  • How much are your utilities for the year
  • How old are the appliances in the home
  • What schools could children attend, in your neighborhood
  • Do you have wood floors and if so in what rooms are they
  • How old is your heater and air conditioner
  • How old is your roof
  • Are you on a septic tank, or city water
  • etc.

Don't worry, there will be several other questions that they'll think of, but if you think of the information you'd like to know when you're buying your next house, I'm sure you can come up with some others of your own.

Keep all these things in mind while making your yard sign and getting ready to tackle selling your own home. You'll do just fine.

  1. Don't overload your yard sign with so much content, it's unreadable
  2. make your sign approximately 2 'X 3' and don't use red and white (yellow field with black letters are best
  3. Let ONLY the interested prospects call you (it cuts your wasted time with uninterested prospects down)
  4. Be prepared when they do call, write down a list of questions and be prepared to answer them
  5. Be sure to get them inside your home by asking them for an appointment
  6. Place it (or them, corner lots, deserve two signs, or more) in the most visible area of ​​your yard from the street.
  7. And be sure to enjoy the process!