Today the latest S&P Case/Shiller Home Price Index was released, showing that most of the nation's largest markets suffered double-digit drops over last year. As the home prices have dropped, more people are realizing just how costly it is to pay that 6% real estate commission.
- Be Your Own Agent: An agent’s commission cost home sellers 6% of their home’s value. ForSaleByOwner.com customers are able to competitively price their home compared to similar homes represented by agents and still come out ahead financially because they are not paying commission. In addition, separate recent studies by professors at two of the nation’s most prestigious universities, Northwestern and Stanford, determined that unrepresented homeowners are as effective at maximizing the sales price of their home as agents.
- Use the Internet to Market the Home: More than 84% of buyers use the Internet to search for a home. Putting a home on ForSaleByOwner.com helps home sellers market their home to nearly 2 million people monthly. Online property listings should boast multiple high quality, digital photographs of their home’s interior and exterior. Homes with multiple photographs receive more attention from buyers. The online listing should be combined with a yard sign to attract people driving by the home.
- Price the Home Accurately: The market in 2008 is very different from a few years ago when bidding wars drove up home prices. In today’s market, home sellers need to become more educated about their local real estate market so that they can effectively price their house. To make it easy, ForSaleByOwner.com provides its customers with a customized property pricing report that contains recent home sales data and home valuation data. Sellers should also research their neighborhood to compare the listing prices of similar houses and use that information to competitively price their home.
- Consider Placing the Home on the MLS: The Multiple Listing Service, or MLS, is a complete inventory of homes on the market. Sellers should remember they no longer need a real estate agent or broker to get their home on the MLS, and their home can be placed on the MLS through ForSaleByOwner.com.
- Don’t Be Afraid of the Paperwork: While one of the biggest myths in real estate is that agents handle the legal paperwork, the fact is that other professionals provide these services. Whether a seller uses an agent or goes “for sale by owner,” outside help is needed to navigate through the legal process of transferring the title. A real estate attorney or title company will prepare and handle all of the legal paperwork for sellers.