Various misconceptions exposed about owner-sale transactions

There are several misconceptions about the type of sale by owner transaction in the real estate world. If you’re attempting an FSBO, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s break down some of the myths and facts about this popular method of selling your home. Hopefully this will address some of the misconceptions and misinformation you have about the process. It can be a positive transaction for all parties involved, when done correctly.

Myth #1: I have to know a lot about real estate in order to sell my house on my own. You should be licensed as a real estate agent or at least take some classes.

Truth: While it can be extremely helpful to know the real estate laws in your area, you don’t have to know everything. Many times you can hire an experienced real estate attorney for much less than the agent’s commission and you are legally covered. These attorneys can provide you with the necessary contracts to make the sale legal and binding. You can take advantage of real estate classes or some simple online training, but you don’t need to have a license to sell your property. Legally, any owner can sell their property without having a real estate license.

Myth #2: I need to be nice to people to sell my house.

Truth: You should not be afraid of people. There are some people who have a natural aversion to people and would consider themselves hermits. Most people, however, can talk to other human beings individually. If you’re nervous in crowds, you have the ability to limit the presentation to one person at a time. You never have to host an open house and you can ask to speak only to the actual buyer, not their entire family. If you work and interact with people on a daily basis, limited or not, you can make the necessary conversations that will sell your house.

Myth #3: I will make a higher profit when I do an FSBO.

Truth: While many sellers report higher profits, many experience the benefit of simply not paying money out of pocket. In today’s real estate market, competition is plentiful and you may need to lower your asking price to compete in the market. You have to be willing to compromise to have a successful sale. When the price drops, you may not have the money left over from the sale to pay an agent and concessions. A FSBO will allow you to skip that part and lower the price enough to sell, but you may not make a substantial profit on the house.

Myth #4: People will call and drop by at all hours of the day and night.

Truth: You will receive phone calls, emails and even car visits. Don’t think of them as a nuisance, but as money in your pocket. These are potential buyers and the faster you can get them to buy, the sooner you can end the hassle. It can be a pain to have the visits and distribute the information, but in reality, when you use an agent, they don’t clean for you, make decisions for you, or even create a budget for you. Those are all items you’ll do on your own, so why pay an agent to do it for you?

Myth #5: My neighbors and the area will be hurt by having a FSBO instead of a "real" dirty.

Reality: When a house is sold, the price is recorded. Depending on where you live, it may be public information. Regardless of how it is sold, the information is recorded. Even if you sell your own house, your area will not be affected by it. Would your neighborhood benefit if a new person moved in and bought the house or if the house became vacant with the possibility of squatters and vandalism? You need to sell your home, why not do it while you’re in control?

Taking control of your real estate situation means doing what’s best for you and your situation. Don’t let others dictate or bully you into making a decision. Real estate gives you the ability to control the future and you can be in full control of the transaction.

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