9 Tips for For Sale By Owner Properties (FSBO)


There are many ways to sell a property, the most well-known being with the help of an experienced agent. And while using a real estate agent is the best and most efficient way to sell a property, some homeowners try to sell their property without help. This process is called For Sale by Owner or FSBO for short.

Selling a home without the help of a real estate agent has its pitfalls, mainly due to a lack of expertise. If you’ve decided to go down the road of selling alone, we’ve compiled a few of the best tips to help you be successful in your efforts.


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  1. Research the Market
  2. Be Prepared for the Fees
  3. Complete Any Necessary Repairs
  4. Nail the Listing
  5. Consider a Real Estate Photographer
  6. Consider a Closing Agent
  7. Don’t Skip the Real Estate Attorney
  8. Consider the Buyer’s Agent Commission
  9. Think About Timing


Research the Market

Do you know how much the homes in your area are selling for currently? One of the biggest obstacles homeowners encounter with for sale by owner properties is pricing it correctly. If you price your home too high, you run the risk of not being able to sell your property. Price your home too low, and you wind up losing the valuable equity in your home that you’ve worked hard to gain.

The key is to set your home’s price in the proper range. Doing so will encourage buyers to visit your property first and engage in fair bidding, ensuring that you will get the right price. To do this, you need to understand the value of the area you live in and much your home is worth.


Be Prepared for the Fees

Selling a house costs money, just like buying a home. There are various costs associated with the process, and we don’t just mean the obvious ones. People sell their homes to keep costs low, but this doesn’t mean there aren’t fees you need to pay. We highly recommend budgeting for all the necessary expenses and creating a small safety net for any unexpected costs that inevitably pop up.

Keep in mind that there are quite a few! You will need to pay for the legal fees that are associated with the buyer’s agent. You’ll also have to pay taxes. When prepping to sell your home, be sure to consider other fees that may also come along. These include things like a home appraisal, termite inspections, property transfer tax, and any additional professional costs should you decide to hire someone to help you sell.


Complete Any Necessary Repairs

Is your bathroom faucet still leaky? Maybe the exterior paint is peeling. Whatever repairs the interior and exterior of your house need, you’ll need to make them before you list your house. Your house needs to be in tip-top shape before deciding to list it as a ‘for sale by owner’ property. Broken items inside your house and a look of disarray will make it look like your house isn’t ready to sell, and it may turn off potential buyers.


Nail the Listing

When you use a real estate agent to help you sell a property, they take care of everything for you. One of an agent’s many tasks includes the listing, which is crucial to the overall sale. If you’re interested in listing as for sale by owner, your listing needs to be well-written to captivate potential buyers. Thanks in part to the pandemic, the details you feature in your listing are more critical than ever because real estate has become almost entirely digital.

In your for sale by owner property listing you want to highlight all the essential features of your home and describe it in a way that helps the reader envision it as their next home. If you need inspiration or guidance on what to highlight, you can look through other listings of homes similar to yours.


Consider a Real Estate Photographer

A characteristic of a good property listing is having quality photos of your home for potential homebuyers to see. Never underestimate the power of pictures, as they can help a buyer envision themselves living and making memories in the house. If your listing doesn’t feature good photos, the likelihood of selling your property decreases significantly. Many potential homebuyers won’t even read the listing until they’ve looked through the pictures.

Because photos are so important, you should consider hiring a real estate photographer to capture stunning pictures of your home. The cost is well worth it. A good real estate photographer will charge you a few hundred dollars, but that is money well spent in the long run.


Consider a Closing Agent

Closing a deal on a for sale by owner property can be a complicated process. It is where most home sales go awry, especially when you’re ironing out details like banks and mortgages. Because closing deals are so nuanced, you’ll want to enlist the help of a closing agent with experience in home sales to walk you through the final steps. Like a real estate photographer, it can be a costly service, but we promise it’s worth every penny.


Don’t Skip the Real Estate Attorney

Have you ever heard of a Purchase and Sale Agreement? That’s the little piece of paper that the buyer and seller sign when they reach an agreement on the sale of a home. Your agent usually handles the purchase and sale agreement, so if you don’t have one, you’ll need to hire an attorney.

This detail is critical. A purchase and sale agreement is legally binding, and you need to include a lot of information in the contract to protect both parties. Since an agent will likely represent the buyer, skipping on the real estate attorney may leave you exposed while the buyer benefits on their side entirely.


Consider the Buyer’s Agent Commission

Almost every potential homeowner has an agent. Not all of them, of course, but most. These agents make a living off of buying and selling your home, and their commission is significant. This is one fee that you may be tempted to avoid paying, but it could likely kill any opportunity of selling your home if you don’t budget for a reasonable buyer’s agent commission.

A competitive commission ensures that agents will show your property to their clients; offer an unsatisfactory commission, and they will likely skip your property altogether.


Think About Timing

There’s a reason you don’t see a lot of homes for sale during the wintertime. Real estate has a season, depending on where you live. Often homeowners remove their listings during the winter and relist their homes again in the spring. Depending on your market, there may be better times to list your for sale by owner property than others, and you’ll want to research these accordingly.



Call Motivated Sellers

Buying or selling a home is a big decision, especially in our current climate. You may be concerned about the costs associated with purchasing or selling a home. Taking the for sale by owner approach is an option, but studies show that sellers who use a real estate agent ultimately sell their home for thousands more than those that choose to sell it FSBO.

At Call Motivated Sellers, we provide a range of services to help real estate agents and potential home buyers and sellers during their journey. We have years of experience in the real estate industry and want to help you no matter your needs.

Are you interested in working with us or learning more about the services we offer? Contact our team today, and let’s talk!