How to List a House for Sale by Owner


About 8% of home sellers decided to sell without the assistance of a real estate agent. It seems like a logical decision when you consider how hot the real estate market has been over the last 18 months.

Interest rates are lower than ever, and it’s hard to find a good home. Most homes on the market today have several offers a few days after hitting the market.

It makes selling the home on your own a good prospect. There are always ways to take advantage of the current market as long as you know how to list a house for sale by owner.

It’s not as simple as putting a sign out in front of your house. This article shows you tips to know to sell your own home.

1. Pick the Time to Sell

Selling the house at the right time is often the difference between a home that sells quickly and one that sits on the market.

Take this moment as an example. Demand for homes is incredibly high. Low interest rates continue to be the driving factor behind high demand.

The Federal Reserve is split as to when it will raise interest rates. It may happen in 2022. If you wait too long to sell your house, that will be enough to lower demand.

The time of year impacts the real estate market, too. Homes tend to sell faster in the warmer months than in the colder winter months.

2. Decide if FSBO Is Right for You

Before you proceed with listing the home for sale by owner (FSBO), make sure that this is the right path for you. Weigh the pros and cons of FSBO carefully.

On the positive side, you don’t have to pay agent fees, which are somewhere around 5% to 6%. You also have more control over the sale of your home.

You also know the quirks and fun things about the home that a real estate agent wouldn’t know about.

The negatives of selling your home on your own are that you don’t have real estate knowledge or expertise. Agents tend to get more money for their homes than people selling on their own.

In the end, you have to consider what your time is worth, how much you can get for the house, and commissions fees.

3. Price the Home

If you think that you have what it takes to sell your home, then you need to put a fair price on the home. Don’t look at your neighbor’s home and assume that you’ll get the same price for your home.

Look at the average sales within a half-mile radius of your home. Look deeper at the types of homes, the year they were built, and neighborhoods. Compare the number of bedrooms and square footage of the homes.

Be sure to check out the expired listings in your area as well. This gives you insights as to the homes that didn’t sell for one reason or another.

If you made recent upgrades to the home, you’re likely to overvalue them. Get a sense of what they truly add to the value of the home and price them fairly.

4. Stage the Home

You have to make your house presentable. People make assumptions based on the appearance of your home. If they drive by and see a for sale by owner sign, they might be curious enough to look at the home.

If they see that there are broken roof shingles, an overgrown lawn, and clutter in the driveway, they’ll keep driving.

Make sure that you work on the exterior and the interior of the home. They need to look updated and cared for.

5. Take Photos and Create Your Listing

You decided to go the “for sale by owner” route to save money. There is one area of the selling process where it makes sense to spend money.

Hire a real estate photographer. People look online for homes before they decide to see the home in person. The images of your home determine if someone will buy it or not.

A real estate photographer makes your home attractive. They’ll light the home and bring out its best features.

7. Review Offers

Hopefully, you’ll have plenty of offers on the table. If you don’t, then you need to assess your pricing and marketing strategies.

A home that sits on the market for a long time doesn’t sell. You might have to drop the sales price. People wonder what’s wrong with the home if it stays on the market.

If you do get offers, be sure to read them carefully. Read the terms of each point of the real estate contract. Don’t agree to anything you don’t understand.

8. Navigate the Closing

You have an offer that you like and accepted. The deal can close quickly, right? That’s wishful thinking.

The fun starts when you accept the offer. The home has to go through an inspection, there are negotiations, potential repairs, and more.

This step by step guide gives you a view of what really happens during the closing. You need to know these steps because once you accept an offer, you’re under legal obligations.

How to List a House for Sale by Owner

There are a lot of steps between the desire to sell your home and closing the transaction. You have to know how to list a house for sale by owner to get the highest dollar amount for your home.

You don’t want to leave money on the table because you didn’t know how to price or stage the home to sell. Follow the steps in this guide and you’ll be on your way to closing the sale.

For more helpful real estate tips to help you sell your home, visit the Home and Living section of this site.