The term For Sale by Owner (FSBO) is quite self-explanatory. It describes the process in which an owner has made the decision to sell their own home. Homeowners usually decide to pursue this route in the hope of saving thousands of dollars in real estate commission. But is this initial commission saving actually a saving? There are myths and misconceptions about selling your own home.
Although it is possible to sell your own home and save on real estate commissions, there can be obstacles associated with this personal undertaking.
FSBO sellers that would like to save on commissions while maximizing exposure might want to consider a flat-fee listing, otherwise called a mere listing. This is a listing on the MLS system in which the Realtor member has chosen or agreed to NOT provide real estate services to the seller other than submitting the listing to be posted on the board’s MLS system. It is listed for a flat fee and is free of standard Realtor commissions. However, some larger brokerages do not allow their Realtors to offer such services.
A mere listing can be as low as $99 and increase in value depending on the services provided. If a seller is looking to acquire additional services such as advertising, marketing and open houses, a Realtor may offer a “package” in addition to the posting, and the fee is usually negotiated on a case-by-case basis between the seller and the Realtor.
In any case, the seller is still responsible for pricing, showings, follow-up, negotiations and dealing with all aspects of the transaction. The seller also still assumes full legal liability for the sale. So it would still be significantly cheaper than going the traditional commission-based route, but it’s a case of getting what you pay for.