It is not uncommon to see homeowners trying to sell their largest investment by themselves.

FSBO sign

Welcome To The Ultimate For Sale By Owner FSBO Guide

It is not uncommon to see some homeowners trying to sell their largest investment by themselves. If you are among this group, it is important to note that a lot of hard work and research are necessary before you begin the process. Besides, you need to be aware that the process is not an easy one. That’s why we present the For Sale By Owner FSBO Guide.

Statistics have shown that 8 out of every 10 homeowners return back to real estate agents after unsuccessful attempts to sell their properties FSBO. This is not surprising because the niche is a specialized one and real estate agents go through a lot of legwork prior to getting a home sold. In case you are doing it yourself, endeavor to invest substantial time and effort into it.

FSBOs typically sell for less than the selling price of other homes; FSBO homes sold at a median of $190,000 in 2017 (up from $185,000 in 2016), and still far lower than the median selling price of all homes at $249,000. Agent-assisted homes sold for a median of $250,000.National Association Of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers

The real motivation behind FSBO is money. Many FSBO’s believe that they can save the real estate commissions and pocket the money themselves. That is a true statement, FSBO’s can try and sell their largest investment so they can try and save commissions which may run into thousands of dollars. Despite this, a lot of homeowners still fail in their bid to sell by themselves and save money. This is evidenced by the above quote from the National Association of Realtors.  From this post, you will be properly guided on how you can go about selling your own home.

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Fix Major Issues That Can Put Off Buyers

Dog and cat lying next to each other on the carpet floorFirst and foremost, it is highly essential to get the home ready for the market by fixing major issues that can put off buyers. Some of these issues are unpleasant odors, carpet stains, damage done by pets and damage to the yard. You must realize that your pets are part of your family but if potential buyers enter your home and there is a strong pet odor that will turn off buyers and you could lose a sale. In addition, you can improve the home further and add value to it with laying new carpet, landscaping, replacing faulty appliances and improving the kitchen and bathroom. After the home is repaired and remodeled, it should be thoroughly cleaned before selling.


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Determine Your Home’s Value

A major reason why many home sellers fail to successfully sell their homes is because they are unable to accurately determine the asking price. An overpriced home will not sell in the market. This is why it is advisable that a FSBO consult an experienced real estate agent, who has been in the business for a while and have the expertise to determine accurate home values. Zillow and their Zestimate pricing tools are not accurate tools to determine a home’s value. Zestimate can be off by as much 10% to  30%, this is largely due to unknown updates to the house. Because the estimates of value from an online valuation service cannot be as accurate as that of a local real estate agent.

Furthermore, you can avoid a wrong determination of your home’s value by examining comparable sales – the value of similar homes in your area as well as homes under contract. You can also hire an appraiser to determine the accurate value of the home. Remember, the appraiser can give you a value at that specific day in time. If your appraisal is 1-3 months old you could be leaving money on the table because another house just sold like yours and received more money than your appraisal.

Pre-Sale Home Inspection

Home inspector spelled outBefore a home is put on the market, it is highly advisable to have a pre-sale home inspection. The purpose of this inspection is to enable the home inspection professionals the ability to inspect it before the sale takes place. This will enable you to remedy the entire issues that could stop a sale. Another reason to have your own inspection report is to deter the buyer from coming back to you, the seller and asking for concessions on the issues of the home that showed up on the buyer’s inspection report.

Never ignore pre-sale home inspection results! Try to fix every issue raised by the home inspectors. However, if you don’t have the time, money or expertise to make the repairs called for in your inspection report you can compensate for those repair items by lowering the sale price.

Emphasize Your Property’s Strong Points

A proven way of selling a home by the owner is to emphasize its strong points to prospective buyers. This is one of the things real estate agents do. When you highlight your home’s strong features, consider its nearness to your school district, neighborhood, nearby stores or restaurants. You can also state if it has a large backyard or you have put in new carpeting. These are some attractive features that every prospective buyer wants in a home.

In addition, consider designing promotional materials like brochures and flyers. Use a good photograph, coupled with compelling writing descriptions to project the strong features of your home. These will obviously increase the value of your home and attract buyers to it.


Picture of a tree showing the four seasons, spring, summer, fall and winterThere are certain times when the home selling business thrives. Most buyers prefer buying homes in warmer weather. Consider selling your home in the spring as statistics have revealed that most homes are sold in the months of April, May, June, and July. Now having said that, houses will sell every day of the year. The reason is simple, people sold their home and are looking to move into another house or condo with more or less bedrooms, closer to schools, acreage and more. So you see, even if you put your hose on the market on Christmas Day it still has a great chance of selling and you getting your asking price.

Advertising Your Home

The role of advertisement cannot be underemphasized. Apart from putting a sign up in the yard, consider advertising your home in multiple places and most importantly, let everyone know you are selling. In addition, make use of the social media and other established network of contacts to get the word across to many people.

Yard signs, third party aggregators, and open houses were the most common marketing methods for FSBOs.National Association Of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers

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You’ve decided to sell your home, put a FSBO sign in the front yard and started advertising your home. You will attract buyers interested in seeing your house. Be aware, not all people are truthful and they may have ulterior motives. By that I mean they are there to steal your possessions so the smart money is to hid or remove those items and lock them in the trunk of your car. Once the showings have concluded then you can replace them. It is also advisable to have at least 2 people at the house when you have strangers going through. You will now have to handle the challenge of setting aside time for showings, so as to meet the scheduling demands of buyers. Prior showings, ensure that the house is cleaned, appealing, odor free and attractive.

Prequalify the potential buyers with these 3 questions so you don’t waste your time.

  1. Are you pre-approved through a lender and do you have a preapproval letter from that lender.
  2. Are you renting? When is your lease up?
  3. Do you have a house to sell, if so is it listed, do you have an offer on your property?


Financing and Closing

The buyer should be qualified to purchase the property. You will be performing the function of an estate agent by receiving a pre-approval letter from the buyer and this will give you a piece of mind that the buyer will get financing. Hence, there is a need to ensure that the buyer can afford to buy your home.

If you desire to buy or sell your home quickly with fewer hassles and more money, talk to a seasoned, experienced and professional Realtor with over 26 years of real estate knowledge and experience. Doug Hansen and his team will provide you with an efficient and exciting experience throughout the home selling or home buying process. Contact Doug Hansen at Doug Hansen real estate now at 616-485-8955 or at Texts are welcomed.

You can also visit his website at for more information. He will be more than happy to be of service to you.

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