When planning to sell your house, you may encounter the term FSBO and ask, “What is FSBO?”
In simple terms, FSBO is just an acronym: “For Sale By Owner.” It literally means just that – someone who is selling their house without the help of an agent or other real estate professional.
(Note: some real estate pros pronounce this like a word: “Fizz-bo.” Others prefer spelling it out: F-S-B-O. It’s good to be familiar with both!)
Advantages of FSBO
Selling a house can be a lot of work, but there are some good reasons to consider selling your home yourself.
You’re in Control
When you sell FSBO, you call the shots. You and only you decide on the asking price, what to repair and what to leave as-is, and when to schedule showings. You handle all the marketing and negotiations personally. You’re in charge!
For some people, this is a welcome challenge. If you have the time to spare, and an interest in sales and marketing, you may enjoy FSBO.
Because you’re doing all the work, you don’t need to pay anyone for their services. This allows you to cut one of the biggest costs of home-selling: the seller’s agent commission. That means more money in your pocket from the proceeds!
Set Your Own Pace
If you’re really motivated and you have the free time to invest in the sales process, you can get your house listed and sold in a month or less, given favorable market conditions. Or, maybe you’re not in a hurry to sell and you don’t mind waiting months for the right offer. In that case, FSBO can be a great option, because you can put in as much or as little effort as you desire.
Disadvantages of FSBO
FSBO is not for everyone. Each of these pros to For Sale By Owner has a negative equivalent.
You Have to do All the Work
Being in charge means taking responsibility – all of it. The house isn’t going to sell itself, so you’ll need to devote dozens of hours each week to marketing and maintenance. You may also find prospective buyers have questions you didn’t expect or can’t answer, and that can leave you in a precarious position for negotiating the sale price.
Some Buyers Won’t Find You
Another related issue: as an FSBO, you’ll be excluded from much of the network of real estate agents in your area. Yes, you can pay for a listing on MLS, the Multiple Listing Service used by real estate pros, but you won’t have easy access to all those buyer agents who might have a client willing to pay your asking price.
It Might Cost More in the Long Run
Sure, you can save money by not hiring an agent to sell for you – at least in theory.
But you may end up spending or losing that saved money elsewhere.
Even though FSBO sellers don’t need to pay their own agent, they will most likely need to cough up a commission for a buyer’s agent. That can amount to 3 percent or more of the sale price. You can avoid this by selling only to buyers who don’t have an agent, but this severely limits the number of offers you’ll get.
Since you’ll most likely be dealing with a buyer’s agent, you’ll be going up against a savvy and experienced negotiator. Unless you’re a hard bargainer yourself, you may be intimidated by negotiating directly with a buyer’s agent.
After all that, there’s the prospect of getting a lower price than you anticipated. A 2017 study by Collateral Analytics found the final sale price for FSBO homes was 6 percent less than the price for similar homes sold by an agent, on average.
Finally, there’s the cost of your time. You may end up spending hundreds or even thousands of hours dealing with the sale process – time that could have been spent with your friends and family. Can you put a price on that?
The FSBO Alternative: Sell to a Cash Buyer
There is a way to sell your house without involving any agents at all – that can save you a lot of money AND time!
By selling to an investor like Local Cash Buyers, you cut out all the middlemen and get cash for your house, condo, apartment, duplex, or other real estate. Here’s how it works:
- You contact us to request a free, no-obligation consultation over the phone or videoconference. It takes just 15 minutes!
- We arrange a brief visit to your property at a time that works for you.
- Within 24 hours, we make you a written, all-cash offer.
- If you accept, we write you a check and close in as little as 7 days.
There are no agents, no fees, no commissions, no appraisals, and no inspections. We buy as-is, so there’s no need to worry about repairs or upkeep. And we buy FAST. If you call us today, you could have your house sold by this time next week!
It really is possible to sell your home without hassle. Contact us now using the form below to request a FREE, no-pressure, zero-obligation consultation. We look forward to helping you sell your house fast!