How to sell a Condo/House without a realtor?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Henry Carmona, Apr 20, 2003.

  1. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    Howdy folks, im looking to sell my Condo in SA and would like some help.

    Is there any websites, or advice you all could give on how to sell my place by myself?

    How often is something like this done?

    I just cant stand the thought of losing $5000 on the sale [​IMG]

    How difficult is it?
    Where do i advertise?
    Im assuming there is much less paper work?

    Are there people/professionals that can help for less than 6%?

    Thanks alot guys!

    PS-Anyone looking to move [​IMG]
     
  2. LaMarcus

    LaMarcus Screenwriter

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    I would also like to do this.
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    Off the top of my head, the most well known is www.buyowner.com if you're into handling most of the details yourself.
     
  4. Win Joy Jr

    Win Joy Jr Stunt Coordinator

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    I would NEVER think about selling a house without an agent. Yeah, it is 6%, but you just need to deal with one person, your agent. Make them work for the commission.

    If you try to sell it yourself, you may not have access to the local MLS (Multiple Listing Service) that other agents use when searching for houses for their buyers. Buyers agents typically do not mention / show FSBO's (For Sale By Owner). If the market in San Antonio is hot, then it may be easier. But you may lose out in having your house seen by people looking to relocate into the area.

    If you want to work directly with a seller, schedule and coordinate inspections, appraisals, settlement and so on, you can do it for yourself. Me, I just do not want the headache. Selling a house and moving is stressful enough. And, if the deal goes south, and the buyer feels he has cause, you can find yourself with a lien on your title or a specific performance lawsuit filed against you, making it impossible to sell the house until the matter has been cleared up. Yes, that could happen with an agent, but is, IMHO, less likely with an agent. And, on the plus side, if your agent finds the buyer, he is still responsible for protecting YOUR interests.

    If you want to turn selling your house into a hobby, then do it. But be prepared for the hours out of your life it is going to take.
     
  5. Win Joy Jr

    Win Joy Jr Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry about that - Double post.
     
  6. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    I have noticed numerous houses in our subdivision that have been for sale by owner. However, in each case within a couple of months, a new sign invariably appears indicating the property is now for sale via a realtor. Evidently, "for sale by owner" does not work well in our area.

    I have often wondered if buyer's agents blacklist "for sale by owner" properties and do not show them to their clients.

    We did purchase our first home without a realtor listing. However, in our case we were purchasing the home from my parents, who were retiring and moving away around the same time we were getting married. So, this was not a normal situation.
     
  7. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    When I was searching I was told that I won't be seeing any FSBO homes just because they aren't in the computer system. But if I found one I wanted to look at to let the realtor know and she would setup seeing it and negotiations. Basically the realtor is good for handling the organization of the paperwork and all the different agencies and getting a good price. Its getting easier and easier for normal people to search the MLS database for homes and to go look at new builds without the realtor.
     
  8. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    Thats what im thinking Mike. I actually WOULD be listing on the MLS in my area, cost is about $500 if im correct, and the agent would receive 3%.

    I would also advertise in the local property magazines and hire a real estate attorney.

    I dont think selling my condo will be very difficult being as i live one block from the Medical Center here.

    Ive only had this place for about 4 years, and i dont stand to gain too much of a profit. Subtract the 6% a realtor gets and im losing alot.

    In no way am i saying that a realtor doesnt earn his due, im just saying that if i can save money by selling the home myself then ill try it, i just need a little help [​IMG]
     
  9. Chris Rosene

    Chris Rosene Second Unit

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    I sold (and bought) all my homes "by owner". The benefits are far beyond the commission. I got tired of realtors telling me about the closet space or the park-like yard . .you know, things that are obvious. I prefer to talk to the owner directly and get the history of the house, what the neighbors are like, what work was done recently, when was the roof replaced, what perennials are in the gardens, etc, etc. I have always built up a friendship with the owner/buyer. Adds to the comfort level of buying/selling the house.

    The marketing can be fun. I setup a website with oodles of photos, printed color brochures and posted them at local businesses, and ran ads in the newspaper. I was never at a shortage for traffic. When the people bought the house, I put up a big "congratulations" page because they were telling all their friends/relatives to look at the page to see their new house.

    When you have an agreement in principal ($$$, escrow, closing date, etc) hire an attorney to draft up and review paperwork. Most attorneys can review these in their sleep. Its very basic legal stuff. All in all it costs less than $800 to sell a house (that includes ads and attorney fees). Well worth it in my mind.

    Perhaps the most over-riding factor was I didn't feel comfortable with people going through my house when I wasn't there[​IMG]
     
  10. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    I bought my current house from a buyowner.com listing. A few things:

    1) Their site is great. There was nothing worse than getting up on a saturday to go to an open house put on by a realtor, and then the house would not be at all what we were looking for. But with BuyOwner, you can use those 360 degree panoramas to decide whether or not the house is even something you're interested in. I think they bring the 360 camera to your house, and then you pay a fee based on how many they take.

    2) If you've never bought/sold a house before, consider getting at least an agent. There are so many little tips they can give you to get your house in selling shape and to get top dollar (or just to get it sold if thats what you want)

    3) I have seen a similar phenomenon as Scott, but I also think that a lot of people who do FSBO are shopping their house on the market for sport (a lot of people considering retirement do this)... I also see it a lot in trendy areas where property is overvalued. Bottom line, if you need it sold right away, a realtor is the way to go.
     
  11. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    Thanks Matt, i agree. Im not in a hurry to SELL, i may just lease and look for a buyer during that time.

    Chris,
    Im glad you had a good experience, it give me hope [​IMG]

    So you say you advertised, did you list on the MLS?

    $800 is chicken scratch when selling a home!! Congratulations!! I hope i can be so lucky. Any other tips i should know about?

    Of course i plan on touching the place up a bit. Heres what i want to do:
    Paint everything.
    Replace carpet or even laminate flooring in the living room/dining room.
    And new tile in the kitchen and bathroom.

    Ive got a contact for the carpet/flooring, but i think i can put down the wood flooring myself if i decide to go that route. I may just get my buddy to just carpet the whole place instead.

    Ill repaint the cabinets and fix a few odds and ends.
     
  12. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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  13. Eric_L

    Eric_L Screenwriter

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    1) As with any professoional, your opinion of a Realtor will be colored by your past experience with them. If you get a good Realtor you'll be sold fro life. If you get a schmuck you'll never want one again. I was fortunate, I got a good one. It also helps to know some people in the industry who can refer. A good Realtor will pay for themselves with saved trouble and possibly a greater sales price.



    2) I would avoind spending much on flooring. Instead give the buyer an allowance to have it done in a color or type they choose.

    3) FSBO's tend to only work in high traffic areas. Also, bear n mind, they typical person who enters a FSBO is looking for a 'deal' (most often a steal). They are typically quite annoying.

    4) A FSBO strategy that I have heard works is to team up with a C paper lender. Run an ad in the paper like this:
    "Beatuiful Townhouse, 2bed, 1 bath, allowance for new carpet. Easy credit terms with reasonable down payment."

    If you have someone interested who has credit trouble but a good cash downpayment, the loan broker gets a loan and you sell the house. Make sure the loan broker knows lending advertizing laws since they vary by region.
     
  14. MarcVH

    MarcVH Second Unit

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    Others have given you generally good advice. Some things to remember:

    You want to avoid using an agent because you want to save the roughly 6% commission. People who are looking to buy FSBOs, in turn, are also looking to save that 6% commission, so right away they'll expect you to take it off your asking price. In theory you'll end up splitting that savings, although in practice there's enough fuzziness in the value of a property that it's hard to know how the split is working.

    Remember that the goal isn't to avoid paying a commission, but rather to sell the property quickly and pocket the largest amount of money for the least effort. A property sale is an auction, usually a slow-motion auction. To get a good price in an auction, you need to have more than one bidder. Most people looking to buy a home won't even consider FSBOs, so right away you're limiting your audience.
     
  15. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    I dont think ill have to worry about a buyer asking for a 6% discount.

    The condo will be priced at what others are going for in this complex, and in this area. Plus, if i list on MLS, a realtor can find this sale also and only get 3% which is still good.

    This location is a great one, and that was a reason for the purchase in the first place. We paid more than others of the same size in different locations, but the Medical Center area is a great place for some to live.

    Ive gotten 2 calls already and i havent listed with MLS yet.
    Both found out by word of mouth.
     

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