6 Reasons Not To Sell Your Home Without An Agent

Posted by on Tuesday, April 26th, 2016 at 8:17am.

Think you want to try selling your home yourself? Let us try to change your mind with these top six reasons why you need an agent: 

  1. Agents can get your home more exposure.

As a “For Sale By Owner,” you don’t have access to the MLS (multiple listing service), which is the main source for realtors looking for homes for their clients. A realtor has the opportunity to put your home on the MLS and also has a large network of potential buyers that they know personally. A small sign in your yard can only reach a fraction of the homebuyers in town, while a realtor has access to their buyers, their colleagues’ buyers and anyone searching for homes online. 

2. Many FSBOs are priced incorrectly.

Most of the time, FSBOs are overpriced because homeowners don’t have the understanding of a market like a realtor does. Pricing a home is a delicate process that can mean the difference between a home being on the market for weeks or for months. Homeowners can get emotional about the process and base their price on that rather than similar homes that have recently sold in the area. This can cause a serious detriment to the selling process.

3. Owners don’t know how to screen potential buyers.

How can you tell if someone is a curious neighbor, a casual browser or a serious buyer? As a homeowner, for the most part, you can’t. A realtor will work with a lender to screen potential homebuyers to make sure they are already pre-approved for a loan if need be, and if not, are serious about the home buying process. If you can’t properly screen buyers, you open yourself up to a lot of unnecessary showings and potential paperwork for nothing.

4. Negotiating is complicated. 

There are usually a lot of people involved in the sale of a home. If you are selling your home by yourself, you have the potential of having to negotiate with the buyer, the buyer’s agent, the buyers attorney, the home inspections company, your bank, the home appraiser, etc. It’s a huge effort and can be overwhelming for someone who doesn’t have experience in the industry.

5. Buyer’s agents won’t show your home.

In a typical home sale, the buyer’s agent receives a percentage of the commission that the seller pays the listing agent. If there is no listing agent and no listing agreement, the buyer's agent doesn’t have a guarantee that they will be paid for their time and effort. Even if there is an agreement with the homeowner to pay the agent a commission, most agents won’t be chomping at the bit to work with an unlicensed, inexperienced seller. This makes the homeowner’s potential pool of buyers very small. 

6. Contracts and legalities can open owners up to lawsuits. 

Real estate transactions are complicated and hinge upon a lot of moving pieces like getting the inspections completed within the allotted time, making sure there is an accurate mortgage commitment from the buyer, etc. There is a lot of paperwork involved, and a FSBO who overlooks even one required form or legally mandated disclosure could face a potential lawsuit. 

Leave a Comment

Format example: you@domain.com
Format example: yourwebsitename.com