If you’re hoping to keep most of your home’s hefty price tag after the sale, you might want to avoid partnering with a real estate agent. Because the average agent will take anywhere from 5-6% of the sale price in commissions, you could end up paying a whopping $20,000 on a $200,000 home!
Of course, figuring out how to sell a home without a realtor isn’t easy. Navigating the complex real estate market without a pro’s expertise might seem too intimidating to try—but there are a few alternatives worth considering. If you’re in the market to sell, here are a few tactics to keep in mind before you sign a contract with your local realtor.
Option 1: Sell Your Home for Cash
This is by far the easiest option for any homeowner who needs to sell fast, as well as for homeowners who want to avoid investing their time and money into marketing and selling.
As their name suggests, cash buyers are companies that purchase real estate outright, and it’s often possible to get a deal in as little as 24-48 hours.
Even better, because cash buyers aren’t looking for a move-in-ready property, there’s no need to renovate, upgrade, or stage your home. Instead, they’ll check out the property and give you a fair price based on its current condition.
Note, of course, that this means that working with a cash buyer isn’t ideal if you’re hoping to get the highest possible price from your home. If you’d rather spend your time and money tweaking your listing, doing a home makeover, going through the home showing process, and appealing to the right buyer through the traditional route, you might get more money through a bidding war. You’ll also wait longer for the perfect offer!
If a quick cash sale sounds good to you, all you’ll need to do is a quick search for “house buyers near me.” It’s crucial to partner with a company that has experience in your area, as the details of cash transactions can vary from state to state.
Option 2: Sell to Someone You Know
If you do know someone who is interested in buying your property, you can skip the real estate agent entirely. Instead, you’ll need to hire a real estate lawyer who can help draft the correct documents and represent your interests throughout the transaction. These experts do cost money, of course, but it’s far less than you’ll pay for a full-service realtor!
The benefit of this option is that you’ll often have wiggle room to negotiate on the price and the minute details of the transaction. Plus, with an attorney on hand, you’ll have someone to help you settle any disputes like repairs or moving dates.
As with cash buyers, it’s worth noting that you won’t necessarily get the highest possible price for your home if you go this route. Instead, you’ll have to come to an agreement with the buyer on your own.
Option 3: Sell Your Home as For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
This option allows you to control the entire selling process, including the details that can earn you a higher price tag, without the need to pay expensive realtor commission fees. Of course, it also means that you’ll be picking up all of the work your realtor would have done, which means investing time, effort, and even money. It’s no wonder this option’s popularity is dwindling: research shows that only around 7% of all US home transactions are FSBO homes.
Still, for homeowners with plenty of time and patience, a FSBO sale can be a great choice. If you’re considering this route, here are the steps you’ll need to take.
Price Your Home
Without help from a realtor, pricing your home can be tricky—and doing it wrong can mean that your home sits on the market for far longer than expected. You can either use property search sites to look at comparable homes that recently sold in your area, or you can get a professional appraisal to help.
Prepare Your Home
Unlike the options above, you’ll need to get your home in shape for a FSBO sale. This means cleaning and decluttering, enhancing your curb appeal, and even staging your interiors. Additional tricks like hiring a real estate photographer or even a videographer can also help.
Market and Promote Your Home
In order to get buyers through the door when you schedule open houses, it’s important to market your home well. You can do this by posting on social media and putting up a sign in your yard, though you’ll also want to use a multiple listing service (MLS) listing company as well.
Consider and Negotiate With Each Buyer
As you start getting offers, you’ll need to consider each buyer’s financials in order to avoid getting scammed. In addition, you’ll need to prepare to negotiate the details, such as timelines and contingencies.
Work With a Real Estate Lawyer
As stated above, a real estate lawyer can be a great help during a home sale—especially if you want to be sure your documents are airtight. Bringing an expert to the closing is the best way to avoid last-minute complications.
Get Ready to Sell a Home Without a Realtor
As you can see, there are plenty of alternative options if you prefer to sell a home without a realtor. Whether you’re hoping for a fast and easy sale or you’d rather get involved in every detail of the transaction, the options above are great ways to avoid those costly commission fees. Weigh the pros and cons of each as you prepare to sell your home!
Want to get more out of your finances? Our other posts are packed with plenty of tips and tricks, so be sure to take a look.