Don't Sell Your House! Not Without a Selling Agent at Least


You’re getting ready to sell your house in Boise, Idaho. You have your house all cleaned up, you checked the latest website for your home’s market value, and you are ready to list. Well, you aren’t exactly ready to list. Instead, you’ll put out a “For Sale” sign in your front yard and wait. You might put an ad in the local paper. Days go by without a call, then weeks, and finally months. You aren’t getting any bites on your beautiful home, and it’s even in a great Boise neighborhood. What’s the deal?

This situation might be a worst-case scenario, but if you don’t have the proper experience or marketing, it will be incredibly hard to sell your house. The truth is, most people think that by not using a real estate agent, they can save thousands of dollars. Sure, you can save some money by selling your house yourself. After all, without a real estate agent, you don’t have to pay their commission. And you’ve probably read plenty of success stories where people sold their homes without using a real estate agent in just one day. One day! That is pretty amazing.

What isn’t amazing is how much money you would lose. You might have saved yourself thousands of dollars by not hiring a selling agent, but how much did you lose? That’s right, you lost money. Using a website to determine the market value of your house is okay, as a super rough guideline. But that’s it. These website estimates are just a guideline. Did you take the time to perform a CMA? If you are wondering what a CMA is (it’s a comparative market analysis), that’s perfectly fine. But it’s one big reason why you should hire a selling agent. Sure, you saved some money by not using an Idaho real estate agent. But you lost all of those savings because your house wasn’t price correctly.

You Aren’t Saving as Much as You Think

It’s perfectly acceptable to want to make as much money as you can when you sell your house. That’s the end goal for everyone. But thinking that you can save yourself some money, and by extension, putting more money in your own pocket, by not not hiring a selling agent is a big mistake. Instead of saving money, you are likely losing money.

The typical commission for a real estate agent is between five and seven percent. A small number to be sure, but when houses sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars, that percentage yields a hefty commission. Buy why? Because you aren’t just paying your selling agent for the time they spend selling your house. You are paying them for the expertise in marketing, selling, and real estate, as well as their education in determining the market value of a home and the sales process. Your selling agent is paid because they have experience marketing homes, and making sure that you end with the most money in your pocket.

When you sell your house yourself, and don’t offer a commission, you eliminate all of the buyers using a real estate agent. Think for a second about how many buyers use real estate agents. Almost all of them. And for good reason. Real estate agents are looking out for you, whether you are buying or selling. Take away that commission, and those agents get nothing for their hard work. Which means, you have far less buyers that will be looking at your house.

You can use a cooperating broker, which provides the buyer’s agent with a commission. You only save about half of the usual commission, however, and you put yourself in a very bad spot. The buyer has an agent negotiating for them. You only have yourself. In the end, who do you think has the upper hand? The buyer’s agent is looking out for interests of the buyer. Not yours. You’ll likely end up selling your house for a much lower price. Lower even, than if you had paid a selling agent their commission. By not using a selling agent, you really aren’t saving yourself money at all. You are losing it.

The Importance of Valuing a Home, Correctly

When you are selling your house, you need to determine its market value. The market value of your home is determined by the selling price of recently sold homes in your neighborhood, and several other factors. This is where a comparative market analysis, or CMA, comes in. A CMA looks at recently sold houses that are comparable to yours. This information, while publically accessible, is difficult to obtain and interpret on your own. Determining the value of your Boise home is part science and part art. And a big part of why you want to use a selling agent.

If you price your home too low, you lose a lot of money. If you price your home too high, you lose a lot of money. Noticing a trend? Finding the correct market value of your home is incredibly important, and real estate agents happen to be professionals when it comes to market values. While you are entirely capable of determining the market value of your home by yourself, do you want to risk thousands of dollars? Or would you rather hire a professional?

Take this into account. According to Realtor.org, For Sale By Owner (FSBO) homes accounted for only nine percent of home sales in 2013. The average FSBO home sold for $184,000. By comparison, the average agent-assisted home sold for $230,000. Ask yourself again: am I really saving money by not using a selling agent?

Why Overpricing Your Home Will Cost You Money

It might seem strange to know that overpricing your house can actually cost you money. But when you break it down, it really starts to make a lot of a sense. And again, stresses the importance of hiring a selling agent from the beginning.

When you first list your house on the MLS (which you can do, for a varying fee), but the price is too high, buyers won’t even look at your house. They’ll see the price, and move right along to the next house. With no one looking at your house, it just sits on the market. As months go by, buyers will think that there’s something wrong with the house. Lowering the price doesn’t always fix the issue either. The real estate market is unforgiving, and houses that sit on the market for a long time develop a stigma.

Even if you lower the price to what it should have been, you will be hard pressed to find any interested buyers. When, or if, you do find a buyer, you will have to come down in price again just to make the sale. But that’s not the only way you lose money by overpricing your house. You bought a new house and moved in, before selling your old one. You can’t quit paying on your mortgage or homeowner’s insurance. Those bills rack up more and more as the months go by, and your old house still hasn’t sold.

Why Underpricing Your Home Will Cost You Money

Now you come to the other side of the spectrum: pricing your house too low. Don’t be fooled. Underpricing your home can cost you just as much money as overpricing your home. Of course, when you underprice your home, you will most likely sell it quickly. But what good is selling your home quickly if you sell it for less than it’s worth?

An underpriced home can attract multiple offers, which can drive the price of your home up. But more often than not, this simply isn’t the case. Buyers looking for a good deal will be hunting for underpriced homes. They don’t want competition, so most buyers will avoid a house with multiple offers. In the end, you still sell your house for less than it’s worth.

On the other side of this, if you do get an offer that is over asking price, you might still be losing money. You could have gotten an even better offer if your home had been priced correctly in the beginning. Look at it this way. Buyers aren’t going to think about the market value of your home, especially if you have priced too low. Instead, they will base their offer on your asking price.

A low selling price and a high offer has another negative. It gives the appraiser a reason to appraise the house low. A low appraisal might just mean you have to come down in asking price, costing you even more money. By now, you can see the importance of pricing your home correctly from the beginning. And the importance of using a selling agent.

Finding Market Value is Hard Without an Agent

The biggest reason that finding the market value of your home, even if you perform your own CMA, is difficult, is because you don’t have access to the MLS. The MLS shows the prices of homes that have sold. Without that access, you can only see what homes are selling for, and you just learned how challenging list prices can be. Determining the value of your home all comes down to what buyers have paid, and how those sold homes compare to your own.

Hiring the right selling agent can make all of the difference. They have the experience, the information, and the knowledge to price your home correctly, the first time. Your selling agent knows Boise. They have been apart of the city for years, and understand the nuances of the real estate market in Idaho’s capital.

Of course, you could always trust some online website. Plenty of people do just that, and it might be a really well put together website. There’s just one issue. Online market value websites aren’t very accurate in determining the market value of a house. Its estimates can be way off; sometimes by as much as 40 percent. That’s a large margin of error, and if you were using one of these websites to price your home, you would have lost almost half of the value of your home. Is that something you want to take a chance with? You aren’t just selling your house. You are selling an investment; you want that investment to have a solid return. You’re going to use the money from the sale of your home to move up into a new home in Idaho.

There is one simple truth from all of this. When you are selling a house, you need a selling agent. But you don’t want just any real estate agent, and you shouldn’t settle for just any real estate agent. You need to choose the best agent to sell your home. So choose the best at The Sellers Edge. This team is confident that they can sell your house. So confident, they guarantee it.