Should I sell my house for sale by owner (FSBO)?

This is a great question; certainly one which you should always consider if you are thinking about selling your home. With so many options out there right now to sell your real estate privately, and with complete access to the MLS and Realtor.ca through the majority of these services, you have some great choices!

Advantages to selling your home privately

Obviously, the # 1 advantage to selling your home privately is to save on the real estate commissions. Depending on the market and brokerage that you use, you will typically end up paying around 5% in commissions (split between both the buyers and sellers Realtors). On an average property in Vancouver of $1,000,000, this would work out to around $50,000.

Things to think about if selling real estate privately

Selling your home privately can be tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing. There can be quite a few pitfalls, especially when so much money is at stake like it is in the Vancouver market. Make sure that you hire yourself a good lawyer to ensure that your contracts are airtight.

Very often showings can be an issue with private sales. Most people have full time jobs, and if you aren’t available to show your property on a timely basis, it will likely sit for a long time in a”normal” market.

You also want to ensure that you are offering an enticing enough commission to the cooperating (Buyer’s) brokerage, or you won’t have many real estate agents showing their clients your property.

When is it a good time to try selling my home for sale by owner?

We find that For Sale By Owner listings can work very well in hot markets. Sometimes a market can be so hot, all you have to do is stick your FOR SALE sign in the ground and you’ll get multiple offers. This was the Vancouver market from 2015-2017.

Private sales also work very well in markets where people are real “do-it yourselfers”. As an example, for sale by owner works very well in the blue collar, roll up your sleeves Edmonton market, but not so well in the White collar Calgary market.

We hope that this helps give you some food for thought when deciding how you are going to list your property. Private sales can be great, just make sure you know what you are getting into first! Feel free to reach out to our real estate brokerage if you are looking for any advice!

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