Find Homes For Sale by Owner

For Sale By Owner or FSBO has long been an option that many people look into when it is time to sell their home. They do so for a variety of reasons. However, usually it is simply because they are trying to save the expense of hiring a real estate agent. Ideally, this means that homes sold by owner should even be less expensive than others, making them more desirable. The price of a FSBO home is often at least 5% cheaper than a comparable one listed by an agent.

Finding homes, which are for sale by owner, is not always the easiest thing to do. It requires a little extra work because you simply cannot call up an agent and give her the specifications of what you are looking for. By putting the following tips to work, you will be well on your way to finding great FSBO home sales in the area you want.

1. Check out websites that feature free classified ads like Craiglist.org and other local real estate web sites that offer low cost for sale ads. Even eBay has a section for real estate that is worth investigating.

2. Check out specialized websites that offer just by owner ads. More of these are starting up and usually have an option to search by city or even zip code, to tailor your search.

3. Get the local newspaper daily, but especially on Sunday when there are bigger featured real estate sections, and check it thoroughly for the by owner ads.

4. Drive slowly through the areas and neighborhoods you would like to buy in and take notes on homes with a for sale sign that does not have a real estate broker’s information on it. It may or may not say for sale by owner.

5. Check local real estate publications. Often there are free real estate magazines available in grocery stores, libraries and other public places. While a majority of ads will be for real estate agent listings, there are often for sale by owner ads too.

6. Use your social network. Tell your friends that you are looking to find a for sale by owner home and if they know of one to please pass along the information. It is surprising how often someone in your circle may know of a home that is not even on the market yet. You may get first dibs. If you have a Facebook, MySpace or other social networking account, make a mention that you are looking for a FSBO home.

7. Contact a real estate agent. Some FSBO owners will be willing to co-op with real estate agents and agents will often be aware of such listings.

8. Check the MLS or Multiple Listing Service because many owners will pay the flat fee to list their home there for the added exposure it brings.

By taking such steps you will be well on your way to finding every FSBO home in the market you are looking to buy in. These are great ways to find a good deal. Just be sure that you involve a real estate lawyer so that you have all your bases covered and you haven’t missed anything vital in the transaction.

For Sale By Owner – Advertising Tips to Help You Sell Your House

There are times when home owners want to sell their house on their own and they need to attract as many buyers as possible. There are some advertising tips that you must keep in mind in order to save you time, money and peace of mind.

One of the most effective means to attract buyers is to advertise on the internet as today most buyers first look online before they consult a broker or agent. Today there are many classified sites that allow you to advertise for free. Simply type “for sale by owner” into your Google or Yahoo! search bar and you will find many options right on the first page. To get better presentation and wider exposure some sites might ask for premium upgrades and these may be a good idea depending on the urgency of your specific situation. If there is no rush you can avoid these and only advertise on the free sites without spending any money.

The goals of most sellers are the same regardless of whether or not they list with a real estate professional. They want a quick sale with the highest possible price and the least hassle. For all houses for sale by owner it is imperative to have the right things in the advertisement so that they are able to attract the right kind and the highest amount of buyers.

In any advertisement the headline is by far the most important part. Some experts say it accounts for 80% of the effectiveness of the ad. I always like to use the stand alone test. If you place only the headline and a phone number in a newspaper, will the phone ring? Look at the ads that are already in the newspaper or wherever you are thinking of advertising. Which ones catch your eye? Don’t feel bad about copying what they do. It’s easier than starting from scratch.

Remember to also add photographs when possible. Take a bunch of photos and use as many of the best ones as allowed. You don’t need to hear too much about how to take photos so I won’t belabor the point. Just know that when looking for houses it makes common sense that the ones with photographs get looked at first.

One must also ensure that the price they ask for the house is a fair one and leave, at the very most, ten percent room for negotiation. Brokers/agents and some websites can help you determine the asking price of the property. Zillow.com comes to mind right away. Along with marketing and exposure, pricing is one of the most important aspects of selling a home so don’t just go to one website that tells you the “value” of your home and use that price. Do your research. What have comparable homes in the same school district sold for in the past 3 months?

Tips For Selling Your Home For Sale By Owner

When you sell your home yourself, you are doing what is known as a for sale by owner, of FSBO. Many people choose to go this route to avoid hefty fees charged by real estate brokers. Avoiding these thousand dollar fees is just a good a reason as any to sell your home FSBO. If you choose to go this route to sell your home, you should keep in mind that the process requires some dedication, persistence, and a little bit of know how.

To sell real estate in Connecticut you must first determine the value of your home. This step is necessary so you can properly price your home. You can find out the value by doing some research on similar homes in your neighborhood that have recently been sold. The homes that are currently on the market are also a good indicator for valuing your home.

Once you determine a price for your home, the next step is to advertise it. One of the best ways you can advertise real estate in Connecticut is through use of a FSBO website. These websites allow you to list your home similar to a newspaper listing. Using a FBSO website increases your ad’s exposure to tens of thousands of people. This is the easiest and most convenient way to advertise your website since more people are using the internet to search for homes.

After listing your home, you will soon begin to receive inquiries. Some of these will be from people who are just trying to find out more information and some will be from serious buyers. In either case, you should be prepared to show your home to prospective buyers. Make sure repairs have been completed and your house is presentable for showing. The last thing you want is for your advertising efforts to go to waste because the house was not presentable.

For Sale By Owner Tips For Success

For Sale by Owner (or FSBO) signs are popping up through cities across the nation. Seems the homeowners are becoming more determined to compete with, or eliminate the real estate Agent. Each FSBO has their reason for not using an agent. Some have had a less than pleasant past experiences with agents, and feel they can do a better job at getting their property sold. Others must sell their home on their own, simply due to the declining property values; they can not afford to pay an agent. Also there is the “experienced” home seller; they have purchased and sold before therefore they do not feel the need to share proceeds with an Agent.

What ever the reason, home sellers are determined to act as their own agent. Here are a few tips for you FSBO sellers to consider when selling your home.

  • CLEAN and STAGE. You must keep your home extra clean and clear away the clutter. Fancy up the curb appeal by manicuring the lawn and add some flowers for a splash of color. Use a pressure washer to clean up the exterior (in our “red clay” country, so many homes have a shabby or premature aged appearance due to the clay formed around the lower half of the exterior).
  • ADVERTISE. You must get your home in front of buyers. Dropping a sign in the front yard and telling the neighbors you want to sell, will not cut it. You must utilize the publications in your area and invest money in advertising. Also, you must get your home online. There are several online resources; some are free to homeowners, that will allow you to list your property on high traffic websites. This is a technology based world, and buyers look for homes online. Avoiding the tech savvy world, is only avoiding potential buyers.
  • PRICE ACCORDINGLY. The number one mistake FSBO’s make is pricing the property. Most buyers prefer to enlist the services of an agent (read my blog regarding Buyers Agents) and will not purchase a home without representation. Buyers who are willing to purchase direct from the owner have one intention in mind; ironically the same intention as you FSBO’s…SAVE MONEY. Don’t become greedy, because buyers are educated these days and they have the power to pull comparable home sales in your neighborhood. Today’s buyer will also realize that YOU are not paying an agent, so they expect that your property should be priced far lower than a listed home.
  • ALLOW a BUYERS AGENT to SELL your property. Understandably, some FSBO’s feel the Agent is the “enemy”. Often, homeowners become inundated with calls from agents requesting to list the home; coupled with prior unpleasant experiences, this may cause the homeowner to resent agents. Not all agents are looking for the listing. If you are clear upfront (and in print) that you will offer a percentage to a buyers agent, this will give more exposure to your property. If an agent has a buyer, and you want to sell, working together will net the desired end result for everyone. True, you will have to sacrifice a portion of your proceeds; however, it may make the difference between “for sale” and “sold”. Having your home sit on the market will net you ZERO proceeds. Offering a percentage to a buyers agent will save you money since you will not be paying a listing agent, not to mention it may reduce the time on the market which ultimately adds money in your pocket.

Ultimately, a listed home will likely sell faster and for a higher amount than a FSBO property. The key is to find an Agent that will work with you, and for you. Your prospective agent should be able to offer a guarantee, which will release you from your listing agreement should you feel they are not fulfilling their obligations.

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.

The FSBO Seller’s Top Ten Tips For Selling Their Home For Sale By Owner

If you’re considering selling your home by owner, congratulations! You’re part of a growing trend toward FSBO property sales. If you’re worried that going the FSBO seller route means that you’ll miss out on all of those great agency sales tactics, you’re wrong. You can do the same things that any real estate agent would suggest. To get you started, here’s a list of the top ten things you can do for your home when you’re trying to sell your home by owner.

1. Create multiple means of exposure. Houses sell when they’re exposed to potential buyers. The more exposure you create, the more likely you are to sell. “Multiple means of exposure” means listing it on a FSBO site, providing pictures, tours, and information buyers want to know. Advertise your home in the newspaper. Print flyers that list the details of your home and be available to show home. Some buyers have turned to television ads for sale on real estate channels to attract buyers. The more exposure you provide, the easier it is for potential buyers to find.

2. De-clutter rooms and closets. A home looks nicer and shows better when it isn’t cluttered. Remove magazines, books, furniture, stored items and things you no longer want. You’ll have to pack all of this stuff before you move, so why not get an early start?

3. Fix peeling paint and other minor imperfections. Peeling paint can be a sign of deferred maintenance, bad painting or water damage. All of these things will turn off a buyer. Putting a fresh coat of paint on your walls and ceilings is easy and inexpensive.

4. Consider staging and research some ideas on the internet. Staging involves making your home visually attractive to potential buyers. It may involve re-arranging the furniture, renting new furniture, repainting, re-carpeting or minor redecoration to show off your home’s best qualities. Staging doesn’t have to break the bank, but a home that shows well sells. Whatever you can do to improve the look of your home will help your buyer see its potential.

5. Price the home right. Check recent sales in your neighborhood for an idea of what your home is worth. Do not overprice your home because if your price is substantially higher than other homes in your neighborhood. You will not be able to sell because overpriced homes whether Fsbo or MLS do not sell. Buyers want to feel as though they’re getting value for their money. If your home is the most expensive one in the area, buyers will focus on finding a comparable home that’s priced lower than yours.

6. Always have a yard sign and flyers. When potential buyers visit your neighborhood to see a particular home, they’ll look for other homes that are for sale. If visitors don’t know your home is for sale, you may miss potential sale opportunities.

7. Fsbo sellers need to create an online listing for their home on the internet and may consider using the FSBO marketing services that are available on the web. The key to selling your home is proper exposure and your chances of finding a buyer are greater when you make it highly visible to potential buyers.

8. Answering your phone is paramount as a Fsbo seller. It sounds simple, but many people who are selling their homes Fsbo miss potential buyers who are calling to inquire. Make absolutely certain you or someone else is available to take calls. Don’t assume that an answering machine or voice mail service is sufficient because many potential buyers won’t leave a message when they call.

9. Spend some time on landscaping. Making the outside of a home look appealing and fresh is just as important as making the inside look nice. Remove or trim bushes. In the summer, plant attractive flowers, cover beds with wood chips or mulch and keep things weed free. Mow the lawn frequently. If you don’t know anything about landscaping, check with a local nursery, gardening club or even a nearby university with a botanical program. Students are often willing to take on landscaping projects.

10. Partner with a bank or lender to offer potential financing sources for prospective buyers. Local banks, credit unions and mortgage brokers may be able to offer financing deals that can help a buyer get into your home. Offer all visitors financing information from your local bank or lender when they tour your home. You want to make sure any potential buyer is qualified to buy the home.

These are just a few of the things you can do to help your home stand out. In current market conditions, selling a home is about pricing, location and exposure. If you have all three of these elements in place, there is no reason to think you won’t sell your home as effectively as any real estate agent.

Top 10 FSBO Tips to Selling Your Home by Owner

By using some simple FSBO (For Sale by Owner) tips and techniques, the average homeowner can sell his or her own home without the assistance of a real estate agent. Just as many others have done in the past. You can sell your own home and save thousands, but it takes work and commitment.

Below you will read some simple strategies that can stack the odds in your favor, greatly increasing your chances for success when selling on your own.

FSBO Tip 1. Understanding the real estate market.

Getting an idea of your local market conditions makes good sense. Just like any other product getting a feel of what’s hot and what’s not can help you make decisions that affect the sale of your home. Consider your neighborhood and the features that distinguish it from others. If you’re comfortable, contact a real estate agent to discuss what the current market environment is like.

FSBO Tip 2. Timing is everything.

Timing the decision to sell and gauging the current market conditions could be two of the most critical decisions you make. If you need to sell your home quickly, the less flexibility, you’ll be able to have. Conversely, if you’re not in a big hurry you can sit back and wait for the perfect buyer. Just remember the real estate market is a cyclical environment. If it’s a slow period now and you’re in a position to wait it out then it might be a good idea to wait for the next upswing.

FSBO Tip 3. Assemble a team of professionals to help you.

While it’s nice to think that you can handle things on your own, selling a home takes specialized knowledge. It’s more than just writing up a sales agreement. Depending on what part of the country you’re in you’ll either need to find a real estate attorney or a title / escrow company to help with the legal details. As a rule of thumb, if you’re east of the Mississippi it’s usually a real estate attorney. If you’re west of the Mississippi, it’s a title company. Either way they’ll be an indispensable part of your home selling process. Another important partner to consider is a reputable mortgage banker/lender. They can assist in helping you prequalify buyer prospects. We’ll talk more about qualifying prospects as you read on.

FSBO Tip 4.How to determine the fair market price of your home.

This always seems to be a real tricky one. For many home sellers this typically reveals itself as a major point of contention. When trying to decide on a price guessing or basing your asking price on hearsay or nontraditional methods immediately reduces your negotiating advantage. Basing your price on what the house down the street sold for or what media outlets perceives as increased market value is not the way to get a legitimate price either. There are only two legitimate and well-recognized ways of determining a fair market value. One way is to contact a real estate agent or broker to provide you with a CMA otherwise known as a comparative market analysis. The best and most accurate way of determining price comes from a full-blown appraisal done by a professional real estate appraiser.

FSBO Tip 5. You’re selling a house not a home.

While it’s important to become emotionally detached, you don’t have to become a robot. After all this is your home, be objective but don’t be cold. Keep in mind that people are going to perceive your home differently than you do. Either way remain positive and ultimately the right person will walk through the door and buy your home.

FSBO Tip 6. Preparing your home for sale.

Today’s real estate market rewards those homeowners that place a high-value on neatnessas well as cleanliness. It not only adds value but alsogenerally promotes a quicker and more profitable sale. Once again the depersonalizing of your home helps your prospect with such an emotional decision. Decluttering the inside of a home is also key to your preparation. If necessary, rent out a small storage space and store some household items there. Just as a side note, having a garage sale is also a great way of getting rid of items that clutter up the house. Not only do you get rid of the items but also you make a little money in the process.

FSBO Tip 7. Start spreading the news.

It should be understood if you’re going to sell your home and you’re going to do it yourself, the easiest way to get the word out is to put a sign in your yard. This will immediately get the attention of anybody that happens to ride by. Naturally, this is the essence of selling on your own. Coming up with a highlight sheet to outline the key features of your home is a must. With the readily available use of word processing programs putting together a simple highlight sheet is easy.

FSBO Tip 8. Knowing a few, negotiating skills will get you a long way.

It’s not necessary to become the next great diplomat. You will want to keep in mind that it’s necessary to keep your emotions and personal feelings regarding the negotiating price of your property in check. When discussing the selling price it’s important that your calculations and numbers are correct. This allows you to have greater flexibility and leverage and you can negotiate from a position of strength.

FSBO Tip 9. Qualifying buyers and stopping the lookie loos.

So what’s a lookie loo? A lookie loo is a person that comes to your house and looks in everything. They,look in cabinets,closets and drawers check everything out but never make you a serious offer. You need qualified buyers looking at your home or it’s going to get very discouraging. One of the best ways of getting qualified prospects is to have them referred by your mortgage broker/lender. You can also take the direct approach. If you’re arranging a showing over the phone, go ahead and ask them if they are pre-qualified. Don’t be too shy when it comes to your prospects. If you’re holding an open house and someone expresses interest in your home go-ahead and ask. Most of the time if they’re pre- qualified they love to tell you. So don’t worry about asking, it’s the right thing to do.

FSBO Tip 10. If all else fails go to where the realtors hang out.

If after a while, you’re not getting the results that you were hoping for you can always go to the MLS option. This doesn’t mean that you have to list with a real estate agent or broker. As a private party, you can list your home with your local multiple listing service. Usually this cost a fee but by doing this you automatically expose your house to thousands of potential prospects all over the country. The upside is that you should be able to sell your home in short order. The obvious downside will be that you will have to pay co-op to an agent. Only in unique situations would the cost of co-opting be virtually impossible, due to low equity or some other extenuating circumstance.

These FSBO tips should give you a solid foundation to successfully selling your own home. There’s many specific ideas and recommendations that are beyond the scope of this article when it comes to pricing, preparing and staging your home, and all of the items previously outlined. You should definitely research and prepare yourself for the selling of your own home process. In the long run,it will make things easier and could either save you or even make you thousands of dollars.