5 Reasons Why FSBO Listings Fail

A FSBO seller not able to sell his home

by Homepie | Published March 10, 2021 | } 7 Minutes

Are you thinking of selling your home yourself? You’re not alone. Saving real estate agent commission fees is a big incentive for the “for sale by owner” (FSBO) method.

Let’s see why. The average commission rate in California ranges from 4 to 6 percent. That means that if you sell a house worth $700,000 — the approximate median home value in California — the agent commission can be as high as $42,000!

Even if your buyer has a real estate agent, you’ll avoid paying half of that in listing commissions. Just think. You can use those savings to help pay for your move or towards a down payment for your new home.

According to the Zillow Group Consumer Housing Trends Report, only about 10 percent of FSBOs never engage with a listing or selling agent.

Another 10 percent of DIY home sellers simply give up and end up going the traditional route of working with an agent to sell their home.

How can you beat the odds by selling your home yourself? You can learn from the mistakes of other home sellers. Here are the top five reasons FSBOs fail.

    #1. Not Showcasing Your Home to Sell

    Today’s home buyers are internet savvy, and they want to see as much as they can of your listing before set foot in your home. That’s why successful FSBO listings feature professional photos and videos.

    That means you need to clean and declutter your home so that it looks appealing. Then your best bet is to hire a photographer who can show off each room to its best advantage.

    Take multiple exterior shots as well to highlight your landscaping and the outside condition of your home. Street views of your neighborhood add visual appeal.

      When you create a free listing on homepie.com, you can easily find a local photographer who specializes in real estate. This professional will make sure your listing shows your home to its full advantage with photos and videos that get noticed.

      #2. Poor Marketing

      Sticking a store-bought cardboard sign in the yard and waiting for people to give you a call is not a marketing plan.

      Successful FSBO sellers invest in a professional For Sale sign, but it doesn’t stop there.

      They also promote their home on numerous websites and social media. Many sellers print flyers and host open houses to get the word out about their property to as many people as possible.

        Selling your own home is now made easy with homepie.com. There you can rent attractive yard signs that come with an installation and removal service. You’ll also find marketing flyers and ways to promote your home on social media.

        #3. No Expertise in Real Estate Contracts

        Many FSBO deals fail because owners get bogged down by all the paperwork. Real estate contracts are loaded with confusing terms, clauses and contingencies.

        Most closing documents are legally binding agreements, so errors can potentially cost you a sale as well as thousands of dollars in fees.

        Who has time to study California real estate law or hunt down the right Purchase Agreement? And if you manage to find the right one, download it to your computer, and print it out, it doesn’t mean you’ll know how to complete it.

          Homepie.com helps you understand the process and guides you through the offer and negotiation process in a live step-by-step format. Then we take the terms that both parties have agreed upon and create a FSBO purchase agreement you can sign electronically. The paperwork can be daunting in a home sale, and we’ve got you covered there too. A homepie transaction coordinator can manage the forms for you all the way to close.

          A FSBO home connected to the MLS and other websites

          #4. Not Using the MLS or Zillow

          In California, you can pay a flat fee to get your home listed on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service), a system real estate brokers use to see property listings.

          This database syndicated to sites like Zillow and Redfin, where interested buyers are browsing. But if you want to avoid paying a buyer’s agent commission, you’ll need to create a listing on Zillow yourself for one important reason—exposure.

          Unless you already have a buyer lined up, Zillow is a necessary tool for the home-selling process because the number one place people browse real estate.

          However, owners who are going the FSBO route often don’t use Zillow to their advantage. Have you noticed the “contact agent” button at the top of your home listing? It’s there because Zillow sells leads to real estate agents. Buyers need to scroll way down to find the “contact seller” button. You need to find your way around Zillow when you’re working without an agent.

            For a low fee of only $59, homepie.com can upload your listing to the MLS and syndicate it to over 100 websites, providing the exposure you need. In addition, you’re in complete control of your home sale. You can set whatever compensation you like for the buyer’s agent.

            #5. Limited Availability for Showings

            Some FSBO homeowners limit their showings – and their chances of a sale – by scheduling appointments only when they are home.

            Many buyers feel awkward when the owner is around, and many sellers get weary of having to be home for multiple showings.

              Homepie takes the stress out of FSBO showings. With the smart lockbox service, you can show your home even when you’re at work. You can even schedule tours from ID-verified buyers from the convenience of your phone. Now, that’s one less thing to worry about.

              Sell Your Home Successfully with Homepie

              Is selling your own home the right choice for you? Your decision might have something to do with your generation and where you live.

              According to research by Zillow, 36 percent of millennials and 26 percent of Generation Xers are game to try FSBO. In comparison, 22 percent of baby boomers and 19 percent of Silent Generation sellers want to forgo a real estate agent. Research also shows that sellers in urban areas are more likely to go on their own than rural or suburban homeowners.

              Listing your property yourself does requires an investment of some time or money. But the savings can be well worth it.

              In addition, as a FSBO seller, you can decide the price, showing schedule and any negotiation tactics yourself. You won’t need to waste time trying to reach a busy realtor with questions or worry your home is not getting the attention it deserves.

              When you are ready to get started with your own FSBO listing, Homepie is here to provide you with the basic tools you need for free. With our easy online process, you can list your home within minutes, chat instantly with interested buyers and negotiate offers. Using the Homepie chat feature allows you to keep your email and phone number private.

              And, when you are ready to accept an offer, both parties can electronically sign an instant purchase contract. It couldn’t be easier. Plus, we offer live support to help you every step of the way – all the way through closing. Homepie takes all the hassle out of the FSBO process so you can sell your home successfully.

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