Reasons: Why You Shouldn't Sell Your Own Home

Your home is probably the biggest investment you will ever make. A mistake in selling your home could cost you far more than hiring a professional will ever cost. A few points to consider:

Saving the Commission

The principle objection raised with the most frequency is that you can save the commission by selling your home yourself. Experience proves that this usually is not the case. Buyers today are knowledgeable. They feel, whether it is true in particular instances or not, that:
a. Owners overprice their homes.
b. What the owner really expects and wants to get for his home is inflated by the amount of the commission, so that in case he can't sell the home himself the selling price will include enough to pay the broker's commission and still net him what he is seeking to get out of the sale. Thus, buyers dealing with home owners will argue and insist, in most cases, on a reduction in price at least equal to what the commission would be. If you, the owner, has to sell at the same price you would net from a sale by the broker, you are the loser because of time, effort, expenses, etc.

Under Pricing

You may not be familiar with often rapidly changing market conditions, and the characteristics of the supply and demand for particular types of homes in particular locations. As a result, you may under price your home and by the time all costs and expenses are paid, considerably less is netted than if the sale were handled through our office.


Unless you are a former real estate agent with applicable experience, you probably don't have the training nor experience in qualifying buyers from all aspects, including financial ability and qualification of the purchaser to buy your home. Thus, prospects are either lost through poor qualifying, or as in many cases, contracts are signed with buyers who cannot secure the necessary financing. The contract is not only lost but also much valuable time and often expenses are spent and you must start all over again.

Get "Lookers"

Home owner ads bring a great many lookers who aren't qualified to buy, wasting your time and perhaps losing a real prospect for you.

Difficulty in Negotiations

Since you may be inexperienced in real estate transactions, you can frequently encounter difficulties in negotiations on possible concessions, price and other matters, which might lose a qualified prospect. I will be the "impersonal, professional go-between" and is in a far better position to handle negotiations that will lead to a sale.

Inexperience in Handling Objections

Techniques for handling objections professionally and effectively are the most difficult of all techniques to master in selling. Almost never does a home owner have any such training and experience. Thus, when major objections of any type are raised, which the professional real estate representative can handle, you may not know how to proceed properly. Buyers are certain to raise as many objections as they can, putting the you at a serious disadvantage in trying to sell your home.

The Urgency Situation

When the time in which a home must be sold is limited it is unwise for an owner to take any of that time to try to sell the home with out the aid of an agent. If an attempt is made to sell, and the attempt fails, the broker finally selected does not have enough time to market the home properly to get it sold, depending on the market, before the owner moves out to leave the house vacant.

Lack of Prospect Sources

It is a truism in real estate selling that the more exposure the home has to qualified buyers, the more likely there will be a quicker and more favorable sale. Most owners are very limited in their sources for prospects, friends and neighbors, organization bulletin boards and home owner advertising..

Lack of Advertising Exposure

As the owner you are advertising one home - your own which can be extremely costly. As a broker, we are advertising many homes by comparison. It is frequent that a prospect will call us on one ad but buy a home other than the one he called in on first. Thus, through advertising, we provide many more possibilities for qualified prospects.

Lack of Follow-up System

Homes are frequently sold on second visits, We have a systematic schedule of following up with prospective Buyers and collecting constructive feedback on their opinions of your home. Typically Buyers dealing with the home owner directly, would be uncomfortable giving out their personal contact information and respond more to the agent they work with.

If Purchaser Has Home to Sell

A prospect may want a home that you are offering for sale, but must sell his or her own home before a purchase can be made. In such a situation, your position is virtually hopeless. As the broker, on the other hand, we can offer some other method of disposing of a buyer's home so that your home can be purchased.

Owner Expenses

As a For Sale By Owner, you may incur considerable expense while marketing your home, while possibly selling at a somewhat reduced price. Such expenses can include newspaper advertising, cost of a for sale sign, legal fees, etc. When the amount of the price reduction and the expenses are added up, you may net little - if anything - over what you would get from a broker sale. When you fail to make a sale, these costs are pure loss.

Buyer's Reluctance on Inspection Details

Many buyers, when they are going through a home with an owner are reluctant, or will not, open closet doors, cupboard doors, medicine cabinets, etc., because they feel they are intruding on the privacy of the owner. This feeling does not exist with the impersonal real estate representative. Not inspecting important areas such as cabinets, closets and cupboards can dampen interest and lose a sale.

Don't Know How to Justify Selling Price

Most prospects do not make buying decisions until they feel the selling price is right and justified. Rarely does an owner of a home have a record of sales of closely comparable homes in a general area as one justification for the selling price. Nor does the owner know how to "build up" facts and features about the home, the area, and possible future developments that will result in a good appreciation in value, which is a significant factor in justifying the selling price.

Not at Home Problem

Rarely can you be at home virtually all the time to receive visitors. When the visitors often find nobody home they go on to look at other homes and do not return to the home which had no one to receive them. Real estate representatives, with a key to the home, are available to show the home at virtually any time. When prospects drive by and like a property from the outside, they simply take the broker's phone number from the sign and a showing is arranged.

Strangers Have Access to Your Home

The "For Sale by Owner" sign on the front yard is an invitation to anyone to ask to see your home. While such occurrences may be infrequent, it can and has happened that an undesirable individual can gain access to your home. There have also been instances where thieves have posed as prospective buyers.

The Co-op Sale

Close to 50% of all homes sold are sold by someone other than the listing real estate agent. This is done by cooperating with other real estate agents and offices through the Multiple Listing System (MLS), in an effort to get a home sold faster than if the agent were working on his or her own. As a home owner/seller, you are not afforded the luxury of having other agents seeking buyers for your home. All of your prospects must come from your efforts only; losing any prospects that could have been gained through Multiple Listing Exposure.

Real Estate Laws

The seller has no knowledge of real estate laws. Both the buyer and seller of real estate have certain rights under a state's real estate laws. By not being informed, a home seller may unknowingly be breaking the law while conducting his real estate transaction. On the other hand, a buyer that is represented by a real estate agent may have an advantage over the seller who is unrepresented.