For seasoned home sellers who want to put in the effort, selling your home without the help of a real estate broker, called listing for sale by owner (LSBO) is an ideal choice. But selling FSBO has inherent risks. Research conducted by the Maryland Association of Realtors (MAS) shows that FSBO properties usually sell for around 6% lower than properties listed through agents. These sales are often the result of high prices and low demand.
While working with a real estate broker may seem like the easiest way to sell your home, it does come with risks, not the least of which is the risk of getting into a contract that could harm you and your credit rating. The majority of agents, whether they specialize in selling FSBOs or not, will require a deposit on top of the total selling price of your home before listing it. The deposit can be anywhere from ten percent to seventy percent of the full selling price. The majority of people who list their homes without a real estate broker to find it hard to make their home payments when forced to use an agent's services.
When working with a real estate broker, you should take the time to understand the contract you are signing. The most common reason for listing FSBO is to save a few dollars. If your home sells fast enough, you can pocket the difference between the listing price and the broker's commission. If your home sells slowly, you will have to work harder to cover both the listing price and the broker's commission. In order to protect your financial interests, it's important to do your research ahead of time. You'll also need to check with your state's REALTOR board to make sure your listing meets all requirements.
If you decide to list your home yourself, you must be very careful about who you choose to represent you when listing FSBO. Real estate agents often get paid by the listing price or the commission they receive. So you will probably need to pay a percentage of the listing price up front, as well as any expenses and commissions. As a buyer, you will probably end up paying an initial fee and closing costs to the agent as well as some extra costs, such as property taxes and inspections, that you would not otherwise have to pay for with a real estate broker.
To avoid conflicts of interest, choose someone who specializes in FSBO listings who is familiar with the process and does a great job representing your interests. This person should know how to negotiate contracts and will listen to you closely. and be available to answer any questions you may have, including those about the property and the agent.
A real estate agent in Maryland may also help you avoid pitfalls and save you time by listing your home with them. They can give you the information you need about what to expect from the MLS and the process of selling your home, including finding out about the MLS. If you are worried about your chances of getting the best price, you may also want to ask for assistance from a Realtor that specializes in selling FSBO properties.