If you’ve spent any time at all exploring the intricate world of real estate sales then you’ve no doubt heard the phrase FSBO. An acronym for the term “For Sale By Owner” - a FSBO simply means a home being sold by the person currently owning it, without the aid of a real estate sales professional.
But why would someone engage in what is likely the largest sale of their lifetime without the support and knowledge of professionals? Often the key motivator is money, namely saving themselves from paying a sales commission. But does any perceived cost-saving benefit the seller in the long run? Much of that depends on the skill of the seller and the health of the local real estate market.
There’s an old financial expression that goes “Penny Wise, Pound Foolish” which could be applied in this case. While a sales commission will be saved by serving as your own salesperson, a non-professional is not going to know what the true market value of their home is. The result is the home may sell below, sometimes markedly below, what a professional may have gotten for it.
A homeowner may think they know what their property is worth, but without access to current information that figure is at best an educated guess. A home that has been undervalued will deprive the seller of a better return, while an overpriced home will languish on the market.
Determining the market value of a property is quite literally a science, and a REALTOR® will not only have their personal experience and local knowledge to draw from when pricing a home to sell, they will also have access to the information powerhouse that is the MLS® System and its depth of resources and data.
Created by and operated for REALTORS®, the MLS® System can provide sales professionals with not merely information about current properties on the market, but historical data that can be crucial when setting a realistic selling price. A FSBO home may very well sell, but only a home sold by a REALTOR® will sell for true market value.