While it’s not always advisable, it’s definitely possible to sell your home on your own – in other words, without a Realtor. If you’re organized and follow the steps below, you can potentially save 2-3% in Realtor commissions. On an average home price, this means savings anywhere from $3000 – $4500!
Now please keep in mind: this will mean spending around $1,000 up front to really do everything correctly. You can simply look at this as an investment in saving money, however, once you actually sell the home.
Step 1 – Get your home professionally inspected.
Depending on the size of your home, this will cost anywhere from $200 to $400. Almost all buyers will get a home inspected, but I recommend you – the seller – do it yourself before putting the home on the market.
The reason for this is simple: you need to know more about the home than your buyer does when it comes time to negotiate price.
Normally the home goes under contract at a specific price, then the potential buyer gets the home inspected. This puts you, the seller, at a disadvantage. The reason being, it’s better for you to know any potential problems when you are pricing the home, rather than finding them out once you have a buyer.
Let me put it this way: do you know if your home is wired up to code? Unless you’re an electrician, you probably don’t. Now think about this: which would be better, for you to know that your home isn’t wired up to code and price it accordingly, or for you to find this out after a buyer has your home under contract?
In a home negotiation, knowledge is power! It’s worth $300 to get the edge in this department.
Also make sure you get a termite inspection if termites are an issue where you live. Termites can destroy your home quickly, and many times you won’t know this until it’s too late. The good news is most termite companies will inspect your home for free as a way to earn your business. You can even have more than one company do this inspection.
I recommend you do these inspections before you do anything else. The home inspection usually takes about 3 hours, and the termite inspection takes about 1 hour. Other than letting the inspectors inside, you don’t even have to be present in the home! Most inspectors can schedule their work to be completed within a week’s time.