For-Sale-By-Owner services tout that they will guide you through the process and save you a bundle in real estate commissions.
Make sure you read the fine print – especially the part about closing.
For-Sale-By Owner services will charge you a fee up front, anywhere from $0 to $700, possibly more.
Here’s what you WON’T get:
- An experienced negotiator. Instead of an expert navigating the intricasies and details that are specific to your home and your buyer, you will have an FAQ-style resource guide that is very general.
- Someone who can anticipate and smooth the potholes in the road. An agent knows how to vet buyers. An agent has established relationships with title companies, inspectors, loan officers, repairmen, stagers, and a host of other services and providers.
Here’s what you WON’T save:
- MONEY. Period.
The following quotes are straight from a popular For-Sale-By-Owner website
- “We’ll help you collect the right forms and hire the professionals, like a real estate attorney, to ensure you cover everything needed.” Remember, attorneys charge by billable hours AFTER you have paid a hefty retainer. According to the American Bar Association Journal, average rates for attorneys are $727.00 per hour.
- “Hire a real-estate attorney who can help you review all of the paperwork.” This is the first to-do on the closing checklist.
- “Every seller pays for a real estate attorney.” Sorry, not true.
In the end, hiring a real estate agent will save you time, save you headaches, and save you money.