Selling your house is no easy feat. Normally, if you want to sell your house, the first step you should take is to contact a real estate agent or brokerage to get your house listed.
For the majority of sellers, the thought of dealing with legal proceedings and paperwork without representation is daunting and off-putting.
But these days, more and more sellers are choosing to sell their homes without the help of a realtor.
In selling your house without a realtor, you must know what to do and what to avoid. You need to understand the legal implications and whatnots of selling your house without a realtor in 2022.
This article is a guide for you if you are thinking of selling your house without a realtor.
Why Should You Sell Your House Without A Realtor?
A lot of people consider selling their house without going through a realtor. There are advantages to doing so, but there are also disadvantages attached. However, the reasons why you should consider selling your house without a realtor are-
- Avoid paying commission: This is one of the advantages of selling your house without a realtor. Normally, when you sell your house with your realtor, they take 6% of the sale price and share it between the buyers and seller’s agents. If you sell your house without a realtor, you can keep this money yourself.
- By selling your home yourself without a realtor, you can advertise and market your house the way you want it. You can also negotiate the price you want to sell your house without the help of a realtor.
- When you sell your house without a realtor, the chances of you getting everything you want are quite high.
However, selling a house is not easy, you have to put in work and do a lot of research to be able to get a successful sale.
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Are There Any Cons Of Selling Your House Without A Realtor?
Of course, you should know there would be disadvantages to selling your home without a realtor.
Some of the disadvantages are:
- When you decide you want to sell your house without a realtor, you won’t have MLS access. The access is only granted to registered brokers and agents.
- Without a realtor, you could experience poor customer service. If you don’t get help when you need it, selling a house without a realtor can become a very expensive experiment very fast.
- You are not in the business of selling houses. As such, you might not even know what your house is worth and you may end up selling it lower.
- There are a lot of laws to abide by when selling a house. If you make a mistake, you could get into trouble with the law.
- If any repairs are required by the buyer, you may have issues negotiating those and negotiating who to pay for them.
In all, ensure you do the proper research before you start the process of selling your house.
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Is Selling Your House Without A Realtor Worth It?
According to Real Trends, home sellers spent approximately $86 billion on real estate commissions last year.
A 6% commission fee on a $400,000 sale would add $24,000 to the sales price, whereas a 5% fee will cost $20,000.
According to the Zillow Group’s Consumer Housing Trends Report survey, for over 50% of sellers, getting maximum returns was the most important consideration.
As with anything, there is a downside to selling your home on your own. It’s likely to be a much more difficult task than you may think.
If you have some marketing skills and you have prepared your mind for the stress, then selling your house without a realtor would be worth it.
You should also know that it’s more difficult and stressful than it looks.
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How to Sell Your House without a Realtor in 2022?
Check out this easy step to take when you want to sell your house without a realtor in 2022;
Step 1- Market Research
The first and the basic step in your home selling journey. You should be able to do market research to figure out the features of houses selling out.
You should also do your research to know what the buyers in your area are willing to pay for a house like yours.
Doing your research can help you sell your house out faster.
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Step 2- Set a Price
Colby Sambrotto, current Chief Revenue Officer at Home Captain and former president of USRealty.com, advises FSBO sellers to set their property’s price based on the hard data of the market and not on their emotional attachment to their house.
When selling your house without a realtor, make sure you add a reasonable price. If you charge too high, your property might remain unsold, if you set a price too low, you are being at a disadvantage to yourself.
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Step 3- Make Your House Look Attractive
Your house is for sale. You should make it look as attractive as possible. When your house looks nice inside and out, people would be willing to pay almost anything you set your price at.
Deep clean the house and hide your personal belongings so that the buyers can imagine themselves in their new home.
You can also splurge a little on improving your house, like repainting the walls and the door to enhance the ambiance, buying a new welcoming doormat, and decorating the exterior with some flowers.
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Step 4- Take Great Pictures of the House
When selling your house, you should have great pictures of the house, inside and out.
If you do not have a digital camera, you could hire a professional photographer to take these pictures.
Especially if you would be selling online, these pictures are a great way for you to sell your house without a realtor quickly.
Step 5- Put Up A “For Sale” Sign
Not everyone knows the happenings in a neighborhood. Putting up a sign showing the intention to sell your house is a way to serve notice to interested buyers that the said house is also for sale.
This sign can help you sell out your house without a realtor faster than you imagine.
You should also note that MLS provides you must notify brokers within 1 business day after closing your sale.
As a very important process of the listing, brokers are required to immediately update the listing on the MLS within 1 business day of home closing.
Brokers can be fined for not updating your listing and they will be required to pass that fine onto you.
Step 6- Post Your Listing
One disadvantage that comes while selling a house without a realtor is no access to MLS Listing.
MLS is a database that has a comprehensive list of real estate properties that are up for sale. Only registered realtors are given access to MLS.
However, you can still pay an upfront flat fee of a few hundred dollars to gain access to the MLS and save thousands of dollars in listing agent commissions.
Step 7- Use a Showing Management Tool
Once your property is ready for showings, it is critical to managing showings effectively. You want to know exactly who has seen your property or expressed interest in seeing it.
And you want to know exactly when they saw it. Online showing scheduling tools provide home buyers and buyer agents with a frictionless way to request and schedule showings.
Step 8. Negotiate Offers
Of course, people would come for the house you are putting up for sale. You need to be able to negotiate the offers toy gets.
Check the offers, try not to ignore any, no matter how belittling you think they may sound. Where you are sure you don’t want to counter or accept, just politely decline.
Step 9. Handle the Paperwork And Closure
Paperwork for selling a house without a realtor can be a daunting task for you. Also, the rules and regulations for real estate transactions are different from state to state, and thus complying with them might be quite intimidating for you.
It is recommended that you hire a real estate lawyer to handle the legalities of your transaction. Closing is a legal affair and should be handled by either a closing attorney or a title agent.
Most of the closing process will also be handled by the buyer’s agent, but you’ll likely be asked to provide documentation, which is another reason why having your paperwork ready to go is important.
Step 10: Check the Buyer’s Mortgage
Be prepared as the biggest obstacle during closing tends to be the buyer’s mortgage. If you are selling your home yourself, it’s essential to do your due diligence early on and make sure that a buyer is pre-qualified for the loan. This way, you reduce the chances that your will hit a bump in the road at closing where there are issues with the mortgage.
What Paperwork Do You Need To Sell Your House Without A Realtor?
Paperwork needed for selling a house varies from state to state. So, it is advised that you consult with a local real estate attorney or agent, or do a little online research on local government websites to know what documents are required as per your locality.
However, the basic paperwork you could need are:
- Original sales contract
- Professional appraisal
- Records of home repair and maintenance
- Lister’s agreement
- Pre-inspection report
- Purchase offer document
- Mandatory disclosures
- Insurance records, amongst others.
When buyers know a home is for sale by the owner, they may try to negotiate lower than they typically would otherwise, and without any representation yourself, you might find yourself getting swindled.
It’s also essential to do a lot of research about the laws and regulations in your area. You should be aware of everything that is legally required of you as a seller, and make sure that you have all the necessary legal paperwork ready before you consider inviting buyers to view your home.
These steps above on how to sell your house without a realtor should serve as a great guide.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Selling a house without a Realtor typically leads to a lower sales price, according to data from the National Association of Realtors’ 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.
Your three main options to sell a house without a Realtor include: Sell to a cash buyer, hire a real estate attorney to facilitate a sale to a known buyer, and handle the sale yourself via For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
Do your market research, set a price, clean the house inside and out and if possible, conduct an open house.
No. Selling your own house is entirely possible. Some people may even think it’s fun. It does, however, involve a great deal of work. Make sure to handle the entire process carefully because it is a large financial and legal transaction.
It is highly advised to hire a real estate lawyer if you are selling a house to someone you don’t know. Dealing in real estate requires knowledge of federal, state, and local laws. Hiring a real estate attorney not only protects your assets and investments but also takes care of legalities involved in the seller-buyer transactions, to avoid any unforeseen mishaps.
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