For Sale by Owner Homes(2)
USINFO | 2013-12-23 15:46

Do your due diligence
As a buyer you need to do all the same things you would if the house were being sold through a real estate agent:
• You still need to know if the asking price is fair (get comps!).
• You still want to inspect the property yourself and have a professional inspection done.
• You still need to make an offer and negotiate a contract.

Potential anomalies to bear in mind
Sellers who are not using a real estate agent may be doing so for reasons that can make for truly difficult dealings. Some sellers are so stubborn and unrealistic about pricing their property that they have passed from one agent to another until no agents will take the listing.

Or the seller may have been told that he needed to bring the home up to code, or to make sufficient repairs to bring it up to an acceptable standard to put on the market. Rather than go to this trouble and expense, the seller may have decided to sell the home himself.

With a FSBO you need to get answers to some additional questions:
• How long has the home been for sale?
• Was it listed with an agent or agents before the seller took over and, if so, for how long?
• Why does the seller believe the house has not sold (especially if he's been trying to sell the home for a year or longer)? If he's blaming lazy real estate agents, you may want to look at the house with an eagle eye before making an offer.
FSBO and your agent

Say you've been surfing the FSBO sites online and have found one or two homes that look interesting, or you've seen some while driving around your desired neighborhood. Let your agent initiate contact with the seller and get all the usual information about the home. (If not, you can approach the seller yourself, of course.)

A qualified buyer is nothing to sneeze at, so in many cases, the FSBO seller will be willing to work through your agent. The agent would handle all the paperwork and ensure that the closing process moves along smoothly.


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