Statistics provided by Zillow indicate that approximately 20% of Americans try to sell their home without a real estate agent. However, only 10% of property owners end up selling their home without an agent successfully. The rest end up selling their home with an agent, or just remove the home from the market.
For Sale By Owner (FSBO) is the most obvious choice for sellers who want to avoid paying an agent’s commission. This blog post concentrates on selling a house using the For Sale By Owner method. First, we’ll explain what For Sale By Owner is, so you’ll have an understanding of how it works. Additionally, we’ll outline the pros and cons of For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh to help you decide if it’s the right approach for you.
What is For Sale By Owner?
For Sale By Owner means that a seller does everything himself/herself during the home-selling process. This includes, but is not limited to, the following activities:
- Taking pictures of the property and writing a compelling description
- Listing the property for sale
- Accepting calls from interested buyers
- Scheduling showings without the help of a real estate agent
- Negotiating directly with a buyer, or a buyer’s agent
- Preparing seller-required documents for the closing
It’s important to know that the For Sale By Owner strategy has both advantages and disadvantages. You should weigh these carefully, because home selling mistakes can cost you a lot. Keep reading to learn more about the pros and cons of the For Sale By Owner method.
Pros of For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh
There are many benefits to the For Sale By Owner home-selling strategy. First, you can avoid paying a real estate agent’s commission. This can total up to 6% of a home’s final selling price. On a $150,000 purchase (close to Pittsburgh’s median home value of $147,500), that’s $9,000 saved!
Another benefit is that you get to devote 100% of your attention to your property. When listing with an agent, they will likely have several other clients they are working with at the same time. This means they cannot be 100% focused on selling your property. If you list the property yourself, you will be able to spend all your effort marketing the property and have fewer restrictions on talking to prospective buyers and scheduling viewings.
Cons of For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh
If you’re a DIY type of person, you may already be thinking that FSBO is the right choice for you. But beware: selling a house without an agent is not easy. The reality is that selling a home can be a very stressful and challenging process – particularly for do-it-yourselfers with little or no experience in real estate. Here are some of the difficulties you are likely to face if you try For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh.
First, and perhaps most importantly, you may find it difficult to price your property. If you keep up with home sales in your neighborhood, that’s a great start. However, it’s difficult to adjust prices based on different home features – things like 1 extra bedroom, or an outdoor patio. It’s common for do-it-yourselfers to price a property either too high or too low because they aren’t familiar with how to adjust a home’s value to other comparable sales in the neighborhood. Real estate agents are experienced in doing this.
Marketing is another area that can be challenging when listing your house For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh. Many (but not all) real estate agents will offer to have a professional photographer take pictures of your home for a listing. The pictures will accompany a description that focuses on key words that attract a potential buyer’s attention. If you aren’t a professional photographer, and you don’t have experience in persuasive writing, it’s possible you may not attract the same amount of attention as you would when listing with a real estate agent.
Think you’re getting out of paying a commission because you’re listing your house For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh? Not so fast! Did you know that you still may need to pay the buyer agent’s commission if the buyer has a real estate agent representing him/her? According to the National Association of Realtors, 87% of buyers purchase their home using a real estate agent or brokerage. Many buyers ask the seller to cover their agent’s cost. Of course this is negotiable, but it’s something you should prepare for if you are considering listing your house For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh.
Final Thoughts on For Sale By Owner in Pittsburgh
Hopefully this article has given you some points to consider if you are thinking about For-Sale-By-Owner in Pittsburgh. One thing we didn’t mention is that there’s another option besides listing your house with an agent and FSBO. This option is selling your home to a professional real estate investor. This approach has numerous benefits.
If this is an option that interests you, contact us at McIntosh Management, LP. We have been investing in Pittsburgh for 8 years, and have a thorough understanding of property values in the city. Plus, we take care of all the fees and expenses associated with selling your house – no questions asked. Give us a call at 412-785-7928 to get a fair offer on your property today!