For sale by owner Vs Realtor

Are you planning on selling your Property yourself within the next 3 months? Do you have a Property listed privately and you are not getting the results you anticipated? Are you a potential property buyer looking into private properties, because you are hoping to save some money? If so, this article is for you!


Selling your property privately


I have a lot of respect and admiration for those that are taking on the complex task of selling their home by themselves. These sellers, often referred to as FSBO’s (For sale by owner), choose not to work with a listing agent for perhaps several reasons, but mainly because they want to escape paying high commission fees. Traditionally speaking, most sellers who work with a Realtor in Mississauga can expect to pay anywhere from 1% to 3% to the listing agent and 2.5% to the buyer’s agent (known as the co-operating brokerage). This percentage is common practice rather than a fixed number.


However, selling your property privately is easier said than done. By selling I do not mean putting up a $15 Kijiji ad, or a $299 listing on MLS and waiting around for a buyer. Selling includes: pricing it correctly, figuring out your target audience, designing a specific marketing plan, booking showings, finding buyers, qualifying buyers, answering detailed legal questions, negotiating your price, understanding all the legal terms and conditions, closing the deal and making sure your best interests are always put first.


Currently over 93% of people who choose to sell their home, do it with the help of a Realtor. For the few who choose to sell privately, their success relies on previous experience, as well as educating themselves about all the pitfalls of private sales. Having said that, it does not come as a surprise that more than 75% of sellers, who decide to list privately, eventually end up listing with a Realtor, considering that they have failed to sell their home on their own. At times they do not end up selling their property at all.


Why your condo is not selling privately


The number one reason why a property is not selling is because of its price. Sellers (for sale by owners) price their properties based on a perceived value on what they feel their property is worth, as well as how it compares against other similar properties currently on the market. However, pricing a Property correctly is a bit more intricate than that. When a Realtor prices a property, they not only compare the subject property to the similar active listings in the area, but also to the comparable listings which have sold in the past and properties which have expired. A list of recently sold properties should provide a rough idea of what a seller should be expecting to get as a final figure for their property. A list of expired properties should guide the seller to ensure that they do not overprice the property. Thus, establishing the correct listing price, should be the number one priority of any seller looking for a successful private sale.


I would argue that the co-operating broker commission is almost as important as the listing price. The co-operating broker’s commission is the amount paid to an agent who brings a buyer to your property. Since most potential buyers have their own Realtor, it only makes sense to pay fair compensation to the Realtor who brings you a potential buyer. For this reason, well over 95% of the properties listed on Realtor, pay a co-operating broker commission of 2.5%. Once again, this percentage is common practice rather than a fixed number.

Based on my observation, properties which are listed on, and do not pay the appropriate co-operating broker commission are known to have less showings, less exposure and ultimately sell for a lower price, than those who compensate the buying agent.


The third reason which prevents your Property from being sold is your marketing plan. In today’s market, an MLS listing and professional photos are the bare minimal. A good Realtor will have a detailed marketing plan which he can show you on paper.

Every property has a specific audience which they should be targeting. A condo which is promoted better will get more exposure and ultimately can sell for a higher price.


Buying a property Privately


Many Property shoppers believe that private sales are the best deals since the seller is not paying the commission to a Realtor. However, this is only a.

 FSBOs list properties privately, because they want to avoid paying commission fees and are known to nickel and time to the last penny. Therefore, negotiation of price can be challenging since both seller and buyer are looking for an extreme deal. Also, as explained above, private deals are often overpriced as the seller is unaware of the correct pricing of the property. Explaining the correct price and finding common ground to meet can be next to impossible. For this reason, many Realtors simply refuse to work with private deals altogether.


By using a Realtor to buy a Property, 99.9% of the time it does not cost a penny to buyers. On the contrary, the buyer gets free qualified real estate advice, access to all the listings before they appear on MLS and most importantly a party which ensures that the buyer’s interest are always put first.


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