Luczak Group - The Blog

Information for happenings in the Real Estate Market in the Pikes Peak Region... and some things we just find interesting!

Tips for FSBO's

9 Must Know Tips for FSBOs

1.  Change Your Thinking
You are no longer a home owner, you are now a home seller.  You will need to adjust quickly to looking at your home as an asset, not the home that you have had so many fond memories in.

2.  Check Out The Competition
Know the competition in your local area.  Visit the homes if possible and take notes.  The more you know about your competition, the more effectively you’ll be able to price and market your home.

3.  Stage to Sell
The truth is that when you sell your home yourself, you will probably get less traffic than if you listed with a Broker.  Not to worry, you just need to make the showings that you do get count.  Do this by staging the home to sell. 
- The Kitchen and Bathrooms must be white glove clean.  Go the extra mile and clean grout, clean windows and mirrors and remove all unnecessary items from counters and shelves.
- Get a head start on packing.  Too much de cluttering is much better than not enough.  Pack up all family photos and clear out the Master Bedroom closet so it looks roomy. 
- Set the tables.  It’s amazing how much it helps potential buyers imagine themselves in the home when they see a Dining Room table that is set with plates, cups and
silverware.  Do this for the nook too.
- Avoid turnoffs such as dogs that meet you at the door, out-dated looking wallpaper and a cold feeling basement.
- Smell Helps.  When the house is going to be shown, make sure it smells like a buyer would want.  Baking a rack of chocolate chip cookies always makes a house smell like a home.

4.  Market Your Property
- The classic red FSBO sign is the best.  It’s easily recognizable and won’t be mistaken for a Broker listing. 
- There are plenty of free online web sites where you can advertise your home.  Sites like Craigslist, Backpage and Zillow will help get your home exposure at no cost to you.  Take advantage of these!
-  Create a sizzling property flyer.  Use quality photos of your home and always use a full color brochure.
-  Feedback is essential.  Leave a feedback form with the brochure or follow up with the buyers after EVERY showing.

5.  Never Be Present For Showings
When the home owner is home, buyers don’t feel freedom to look around.  If you must be present during a showing, pick a room in the house and stay in it.  Let the buyers imagine themselves in the home.  Also, don’t answer any questions about price, time or your motivation for selling.  If anyone asks why you’re selling, simply answer that “the house needs changing”.

6.   Quick Tips for Negotiating
Buyers often feel like because FSBOs are not paying a Broker, they have wiggle room.  Keep this in mind when pricing and especially negotiating.  Be firm when negotiating, but don’t get into a “haggling contest”.  Here are guidelines to understand when negotiating with buyers:
1st offer- The buyer is excited about buying a new home.
2nd offer- The buyer is now thinking less about a new home and more about money.
3rd offer- The buyer will now start to resent you and want to “win” the negotiation.  This is never a good scenario.  The best real estate transaction is one where both parties walk away feeling like winners.

7.  The Offer is Just the Beginning
An offer means you are on the way to selling your home, that is great!  Don’t get too attached to an offer, though.  A lot can go wrong and a lot has yet to happen.  The   inspection, appraisal and buyer financing are just some of the hiccups that can hold up or even cancel a home sale.  In fact...

8.  Prepare your Services in Advance
Make sure any buyer who puts in an offer is pre-qualified with a lender.  If they do not have financing arranged, ask around and get the name of a reputable loan officer or mortgage company that can set up financing.  The sooner that buyers have that set up, the less of a headache it will be later.  You may want to look into acquiring a real estate attorney as well to help in preparing documents and details.  Reducing the legal exposure on you will alleviate stress as the process goes on.

9.  When All Else Fails, Ask for Help
Selling your own home can be a daunting experience and as much help as you can get never hurts.  If you have any questions, don’t be afraid to call and ask for help.  I can assist with a list of free web sites to market your home, or some in-depth staging tips for each room in the house.  I know that sometimes Brokers are looked at as salesmen and are thought of as overly aggressive, I pride myself on my willingness to help EVERYONE, not only my clients.

Good luck selling your home.  I hope these tips help give you some helpful ideas and send you on your way to a successful home sale.  Remember that thousands of people successfully sell their own home every year, and if they can do it, so can you.
      Greg Luczak
      Broker Associate
      ERA Herman Group Real Estate
      (719) 271-8888