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For Sale By Owner: The Inside Scoop On Selling Your Own Home

If you're thinking about selling your home perhaps the 'for sale by owner' signs posted on neighborhood lawns have intrigued you. When you browse the newspaper listings you see ad after ad boasting 'for sale by owner' as an added incentive for buyers and you envy the owners that are confident enough to try it.

There is plenty of money in real estate and who wants to split the profits with an agent? You have to ask yourself the question 'Should I try to sell my own home?'

Before you stick the black and orange 'for sale by owner' sign on your front lawn here's a few questions you need to answer?

"Do I have time to sell my own home?"

You guessed it - a lot of the money you are paying your real estate agent pays for their time. When a prospective client is motivated the real estate agent is available to take the call, show the home and follow up the interest. It is vitally important to be available when an interested buyer is ready to act.

If you want to keep your cash then be prepared to handle calls in the middle of supper or even the occasional drive-by visitor. Knowing you're saving a few thousand dollars can make this little more than a tolerable distraction.

"Do I have the skills to sell my home?"

Not everyone is a born salesperson, but that doesn't mean you can't learn. If you find the challenge exciting rather than overwhelming you've got what it takes to pick up a few pointers and sell your home.

You'll also have to develop a keen eye for creating appealing ads and learning where to advertise. With the increase in 'for sale by owner' websites you can have your listing made available to a wide audience along with your newspaper listing.

"What do I need to know about handling the sale?"

All the information you need can easily be found in a book or you might ask someone who has successfully sold their own home. Looking for appropriate legal advice is not only necessary but will also help make the process run smoothly.

If you have an interest in selling your own home be prepared for real estate agents to contact you and try to convince you that you're missing out on opportunities that only they can provide. Make it your aim to do a little research, know your market and strategy and you can handle this just fine - and keep your profits for your hard work!

Shannon Emmanuel is a freelance researcher and writer. Find out more about real estate investing and selling at

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