Selling Your Home

by Yolanda Kennedy

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There is so much discussion today about selling your home with or without an agent and with good reason. The realtor's commission usually runs in the thousands. Between the stock market and job market, saving that money is necessary. However, are you making a decision that will help or hurt your finances?

Selling your home with an agent is necessary in certain situations. If you are not able to be objective about the value of your home, trying to selling the home yourself may actually cost you time and money.

It is risky business if you are relocating and the home will be vacant. An agent is responsible for the property. A good agent will go through the home on a regular basis to make sure everything is ok. The agent will be present during the buyer's inspections and can give you informed feedback about the status. In cases where you can't get back for the settlement (closing) you can sign a limited power of attorney and the agent will sit in your place at the closing and send you the check.

As you see, an agent may be worth the money depending on your situation.

If you are willing to trade some of your time for the commission then you are in business. In order to save money on anything, you have to be willing to go an extra step but the rewards are great. Don't be fooled. There is some work involved and putting your home on a website is only step one. You have to be willing to market your home and market it consistently. Develop a marketing plan for your home so that as time goes on, you are keeping your home in front of potential buyers.

Marketing your home is the key to selling it. If you think about it, that is how many things are sold. You must make a few decisions you must make before you move forward with selling your home yourself. The first thing you want to ask yourself is if you are willing to put in the time? Time is required to make the flyers, set up your web site, take the pictures, and return calls from buyers and agents. Set aside a few minutes daily to follow up.

You have to decide when you will make the house available for showing. Are you going to have an open house and what (if any) commission you are going to pay? When someone puts an offer in on your home you have to accept or counter the offer. If there is a problem with any of the inspections you will have to decide how to handle it with the buyers. Oh wait; these are things you need to decide on with an agent any way.

Should you sell your home yourself? The truth is there isn't a right answer. It depends on you and your situation and if you are willing to put some effort into it. Can you sell your home yourself and save thousands? Yes. Is it worth the little extra work? Yes. Will the attorney or Title Company handling the settlement handle the seller side also? Yes, usually for a small fee. It is mostly tax and mortgage payoffs anyway.

Yolanda Kennedy is a mother, wife, friend and neighbor who believes education is the key to building the life you want for your family.

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