DIY: Selling Your House Yourself

Selling Your House On Your Own

6% to the realtor! When you sell a $300,000 house that means you hand over $18,000 of your profit to someone else. 

That’s quite a pill to swallow after you’ve been laboriously building up equity in your home for years. It’s also typically the biggest chunk of your closing costs and a big part of what makes it so expensive to sell a house. 

It’s enough to make you consider to sell your house yourself!

But what has to happen with selling without an agent and selling a house on your own? Let’s look at the steps you’ll have to take. 

Step 1: Figure Out How Much Your Home Is Worth

The right pricing strategy is a crucial step in selling your house on your own. Price it too high and buyers who might otherwise be interested won’t even bother to look. Price it too low and you might sell it, but shortchange yourself in the process.  

Regardless, you lose. Either you miss out on a few thousand dollars or your home sits on the market for weeks or even months. 

Unfortunately, every day that goes by makes it harder to sell your house yourself. Buyers have this weird thing about thinking that if no one else wants to buy it, there must be something wrong and they don’t want to buy it either — without doing any actual research on it. 

Selling a house on your own? how do you find out your home’s value? There are three ways you can get your home’s value.

Online Research

To sell your house yourself you can start with some online research. You can input information about your home into real estate sites like Trulia or Zillow to get an estimate for the value. These sites are also a great place to list your home once you’re ready to start marketing.

The only problem is these estimates are just that — estimates. They aren’t reliable enough to use for an accurate pricing strategy. 

Ask For A Competitive Market Analysis

The second way to sell your house yourself is to ask a real estate agent for a competitive market analysis. The agent will do an analysis of comparable homes in your area that have sold recently to get an idea of your home’s current value. 

This estimate is quite reliable and usually free, but it comes with a sales pitch. Agents offer this service as a way to drum up business. Depending on your scruples, you may want to avoid asking someone to donate their time when you already know you don’t plan to hire them. 

Hire An Appraiser

To effectively sell your house yourself this last method is also highly accurate and completely above the board. Hire a licensed appraiser to evaluate your home. 

This method will cost you a few hundred dollars. However, it is the most accurate method and you can use the estimate in your favor when selling without an agent and when negotiating with buyers. 

Step 2: Repair And Upgrade The Home As Necessary

Here’s where things start to get expensive when selling without an agent. Every home, even brand new ones, has quirks and things that don’t work quite right. However, most buyers are looking for a home with as few quirks as possible. 

That means that issues like leaky pipes, damaged doors or windows, mold or water damage, and anything else off about the house should be addressed. Even small stuff like missing knobs on the kitchen cabinets should be fixed. 

Most buyers will hire an inspector to go through the home with a fine-tooth comb either on their own or because their lender requires them to. Don’t just hope they don’t find the home’s problems, because they will. Plus, disclosure laws vary by state but, in general, it’s illegal to try to hide problems.

When selling without an agent make your home more appealing to buyers and get all your stuff out of the way. You might even consider putting little-used or off-season items in storage while you’re trying to sell. 

With all that stuff out of the way, brighten up your home with a fresh coat of paint. Stick to neutral colors that will be pleasing to everyone. Choose lighter colors to make the home seem larger and brighter. 

Step 3: Let The World Know Your House Is For Sale

Once all the prep work is out of the way, it’s time to start fishing for buyers. 

Pictures are worth a thousand words and these days most buyers won’t even look at a listing that isn’t accompanied by high-quality photos. Consider hiring a professional photographer because even though your iPhone takes great photos, photographers know how to make images that sell. 

With pictures in hand, you can start posting about your house online. Start with your social media channels like Facebook. You can also make a free listing on Craigslist

Again, real estate sites like Zillow are a great place to list, but some of them charge a fee. It will be less expensive than selling with a realtor, but be sure you’re willing to pay their fee before creating a listing. 

Also, don’t underestimate the power of a sign out front. It’s cheap and could catch the eye of the right person who desperately wants to move to your neighborhood. 

Step 4: Begin Negotiations

If you’ve done all right with the first three steps, you’ll hopefully get an offer or two. But the buck doesn’t stop there. 

Unless you succeed in starting a bidding war (which is not very likely) the offer(s) you receive will be less than your asking price. Buyers are stepping into the ring expecting to negotiate. 

Since you’re selling without an agent who can go bat for you, this can be rough. Especially if the buyers are using an agent because you’ll be going up against experience. 

This whole thing is really tricky. There will probably be contingencies involved, which means that the contract is only valid if certain conditions are met. Common contingencies when selling a house on your own includes a home inspection on the buyer’s part and the buyer’s mortgage approval on your part. 

You might go back and forth several times, watching the price fall each time. Decide ahead of time how low you’re willing to go before you cut your losses and hope for a different buyer. That’s not something you want to be struggling with during negotiations. 

Step 5: Write Up The Paperwork

Aside from the negotiations, this is probably the scariest step of the process of selling a house on your own and selling without an agent. Real estate contracts must contain certain details to ensure they are binding and valid. 

Information about every detail of the sale must be written in the contract. Big things like the purchase price and closing date are hard to miss, but there are a lot of little things like closing location, appliances that will remain on the property, and so much more that you can easily overlook. 

Finding ready-made real estate contract templates for your state can help ensure you don’t miss anything.

Step 6: Choose The Title And Escrow Company

Luckily, you won’t be completely on your own for the closing when you decide in selling a house on your own. You’ll have to hire a title and escrow company to handle the details and close the sale. You can also hire a real estate agent for extra peace of mind. 

The title company will perform a title search to ensure that you can actually sell the home. They’ll look for liens, easements, and other information that may affect the property. Then, they insure the title to protect the buyer. 

The escrow company will also oversee that everything in the contract is carried out properly. For example, they will check to make sure that all contingencies are met and that everything about the sale is done legally. 

Needless to say, you should choose the company that handles this transaction very carefully when selling a house on your own. 

To Sell Your House Yourself Is Possible…

Whew! This has just been a brief overview of the steps required to sell your house yourself. Make no mistake, this is a big undertaking and you should prepare yourself for several weeks or even months of hard work. 

Selling without an agent can be tough. There is a reason that real estate agents take such a big cut, it really is a lot of work to sell a home!

The bottom line is that it is possible to sell your house yourself. Just do your homework and don’t be afraid to lean on the professionals you do hire, such as the closing attorney. 

…But There Might Be A Better Way!

However, if there were an easier way in selling without an agent, wouldn’t that be exciting?

We’re here to tell you that an easier way does exist!

Selling a house on your own? Reach out to us here at Mrs. Property Solutions. We buy houses as-is so you don’t have to dump loads of time and money into your home to prepare it for sale. 

We also handle all the paperwork and charge no fees. When you get an offer from us, that’s how much you’ll walk away with and you don’t have to pull your hair out figuring out how to write up a solid real estate contract. 

You can literally sell your house in a week and pick your own close date when you sell your house to Mrs. Property Solutions.

Reach out to use for your no-obligation offer today!

Hannah Ray

Hana is in charge of our social media, marketing, and online presence! She manages our Facebook, YouTube, and Google my Business posting. She is also in charge of creating helpful blog content that provides educational information concerning home sellers in a bind that needs to sell their house fast. When she is not working, she enjoys being a new mom and spending time with her two little ones.

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