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For Sale By Owner - Yes You Can

Jan 13, 2008
Need to sell your home? In today's market "for sale by owner" may be the best way to sell. Trust me, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to be successful at selling your own home. The information in this article may provide you with in-site you may not have had before. You can do it yourself!

Prepare your home for buyers. New paint helps and is not expensive. Make sure it is clean, clean, clean. Most important and most over looked by sellers, you need to get rid of the clutter, inside and out. Less is more! Rent a storage facility or have a garage sale but get rid of the clutter. Less furniture makes a room look larger. Over stuffed closest are a real turn off to buyers who ALL want plenty of storage space. Get rid of all the nick knacks.

We all know how important curb appeal is. Get those yards cleaned up, front and back! Remember, an appraisal has pictures of the back yard as well as the front. I know this sounds silly but a junky back yard tells an underwriter a lot about your home's interior and maintenance routine. A buyer may over look it but the appraiser and lender do not.

Next, get a home inspection performed. An inspector will check the structure and systems in your home. He may find things you are not aware of. It is better to find and repair these issues before the buyer's inspector does.

Make sure you price it right. Spend the money to get a professional appraisal performed by a HUD approved appraiser. Do not rely on a real estate agent's market analysis. These are seldom accurate and many times an agent will just blow smoke by telling you what they think you want to hear.

Go sit down with your local mortgage broker. He has a wealth of knowledge you need to take advantage of. Most mortgage brokers have free FSBO programs that will help you immensely. It is important that you know what your costs will be based on the type of loan the buyer acquires. Did you know that a VA loan could cost you much more in closing costs PLUS home repairs that probably are not required by other loans? Will your home qualify for a FHA loan without making very costly repairs? If you are on a tight budget and need every possible dime out of the sale of your home you may want to negotiate in the contract that the buyer gets conventional financing.

A mortgage broker will also teach you the critical areas you need to watch in the sales contract. He may even provide you with blank contracts and other state mandatory disclosures required when you sell your home. Most brokers will even create your home flyer and more important, your financing options flyer. Perspective buyers want to know two things: how much will my payments be, and how much money do I need to pay down plus closing cost.

You should list your home on a "For Sale By Owner" web site. I want to caution you here. A lot of these sites try to charge you a lot of money for things that do not/will not help sell your home. Homebuyers DO NOT spend hours searching "For Sale By Owner" web sites. They work with real estate agents, read the papers, and drive on the streets in the neighborhoods they want to live in.

The advantage you get by listing your home on the Internet is that you put the URL in your newspaper ads, your flyers, and on your yard sign. Then when a buyer drives by your house or sees your ad they can go on the Internet and see pictures, amenities, and the price. If your house fits their needs and their budget, they will call you. If not, it is less of a bother for you. It can be very frustrating to let lookey-loo's in your home week after week. Don't you really only want truly interested buyers at your door? There are many free FSBO websites on the net. Check it out.

With all this said, the rest is just common sense. You Can Sell It Yourself!
About the Author
Author: Connie Sanders has been in the real estate and mortgage industry for many years. Connie believes knowledge is power. She owns a Free For Sale By Owner web site, an information site on Mortgage Underwriting Guidelines, and supports a Georgia Mortgage Company web site.
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