Top 10 Tips to Sell Your Hattiesburg Mississippi Home by Owner (FSBO)

By shaye • July 9th, 2010

By using some simple FSBO (For Sale by Owner) tips and techniques, the average homeowner can sell their own home without the assistance of a real estate agent, just as many others have done in the past. You can sell your own home and save thousands of dollars, but it takes some hard work and commitment. Here’s some time proven strategies that can stack the odds in your favor, greatly increasing your chances for success when selling your house on your own.

This information is a courtesy of MS Home Solutions providing creative real estate solutions to homeowners in the Hattiesburg MS area, including Petal, Purvis, Oak Grove, Sumrall and throughout Forrest and Lamar counties and the rest of Mississippi. We specialize in helping homeowners in difficult situations. We buy houses, many times in 7 days or less. We can pay all cash, take over mortgage payments or come up with a custom solution to fit a homeowner’s needs. MS Home Solutions also has years of experience working with homeowners who are facing foreclosure. We can help save your home from foreclosure or we can buy it even if there’s no equity. For more information please visit our website at www.MSHomeSolutions.com.

FSBO Tip 1. Understand your local real estate market.
Knowing your local market conditions only makes good sense. Just like any other product getting a feel of what’s hot and what’s not will help you make all the decisions that affect the sale of your home. Consider your neighborhood and the features that distinguish it from others. What are similar houses selling for in your neighborhood? How long are they taking to sell? If you don’t know where to get this information, contact a real estate agent to discuss what the current market environment is like.

FSBO Tip 2. Timing is everything.
Timing the decision to sell and gauging the current market conditions could be two of the most critical decisions you make. If you need to sell your home quickly, you’ll have less flexibility. Conversely, if you’re not in a big hurry you can sit back and wait for the perfect buyer. Just remember the real estate market is a cyclical environment. If it’s a slow period now and you’re in a position to wait it out then it might be a good idea to wait for the next upswing.

FSBO Tip 3. Assemble a team of professionals to help you.
While it’s nice to think that you can handle things on your own, selling a home takes specialized knowledge. It’s more than just writing up a sales agreement. Depending on what part of the country you’re in you’ll either need to find a real estate attorney or a title / escrow company to help with the legal details. As a rule of thumb, if you’re east of the Mississippi it’s usually a real estate attorney. If you’re west of the Mississippi, it’s a title company. Either way they’ll be an indispensable part of your home selling process. Another important partner to consider is a reputable mortgage banker/lender. They can assist in helping you prequalify buyer prospects. We’ll talk more about qualifying prospects as you read on.

FSBO Tip 4.How to determine the fair market price of your home.
This always seems to be a real tricky one. For many home sellers this typically reveals itself as a major point of contention. When trying to decide on a price guessing or basing your asking price on hearsay or nontraditional methods immediately reduces your negotiating advantage. Basing your price on what the house down the street sold for or what media outlets perceives as increased market value is not the way to get a legitimate price either. There are only two legitimate and well-recognized ways of determining a fair market value. One way is to contact a real estate agent or broker to provide you with a CMA otherwise known as a comparative market analysis. The best and most accurate way of determining price comes from a full-blown appraisal done by a professional real estate appraiser. Remember, if you over price your home, it will sit on the market and not sell, especially in a buyers market.

FSBO Tip 5. You’re selling a house not a home.
While it’s important to become emotionally detached, you don’t have to become a robot. After all this is your home, be objective but don’t be cold. Keep in mind that people are going to perceive your home differently than you do. The things that you like about the home, your potential buyers may not. Either way remain positive and ultimately the right person will walk through the door and buy your home.

FSBO Tip 6. Preparing your home for sale.
Today’s real estate market rewards those homeowners that place a high-value on neatness as well as cleanliness. It not only adds value but also generally promotes a quicker and more profitable sale. Once again the depersonalizing of your home helps your prospect with such an emotional decision. Decluttering and staging the inside of a home is key to your preparation. If necessary, rent out a small storage space and store some household items there. Just as a side note, having a garage sale is also a great way of getting rid of items that clutter up the house. Not only do you get rid of the items but also you make a little money in the process. Decluttering and organizing your kitchen and bathrooms are especially important. Clean up and put away all that “stuff” that you use every day.

Curb appeal is absolutely critical to selling your home. Clean up everything around your home, especially in the front. If your house needs any painting or repairs, take care of them. Also, a small investment in landscaping will go a long, long way. Adding potted and hanging plants and flowers to the front porch are invaluable. If you have painted the inside of your home with brighter, darker, or bold colors that you like, repaint with neutral earth tone colors. I hear comments all the time like “it’s so easy for the buyers to repaint the way they want it when they move in.” The problem is that they’ll never buy it because they can’t look past the way it looks now to them.

FSBO Tip 7. Start spreading the news.
It sounds easy: to sell your house you must attract buyers. It should be understood if you’re going to sell your home and you’re going to do it yourself, the easiest way to get the word out is to put a sign in your yard. This will immediately get the attention of anybody that happens to ride by. Naturally, this is the essence of selling on your own. Coming up with a highlight sheet or flyer to outline the key features of your home is a must. With the readily available use of word processing programs putting together a simple highlight sheet or flyer is easy. You can also place an ad in one or more local newspapers; papers like the Impact and PennySaver are good bargains. Posting your flyer at local business establishments also works well.

However, today more than 85% of home searches begin on the internet, so you’ll likely want to find access to internet sites to advertise your home online. Make sure you choose high traffic sites. Remember that one advantage a Realtor has is that, besides the listing on MLS services, the home information is posted on Realtor.com and other prominent home selling sites to attract buyers.

FSBO Tip 8. Knowing a few, negotiating skills will get you a long way.
It’s not necessary to become the next great diplomat. You will want to keep in mind that it’s necessary to keep your emotions and personal feelings regarding the negotiating price of your property in check. When discussing the selling price it’s important that your calculations and numbers are correct. This allows you to have greater flexibility and leverage and you can negotiate from a position of strength.

FSBO Tip 9. Qualifying buyers and stopping the tire kickers.
So what’s a tire kicker? A tire kicker is a person that comes to your house and looks in everything. They look in cabinets, closets and drawers check everything out but never make you a serious offer. You need qualified buyers looking at your home or it’s going to get very discouraging. One of the best ways of getting qualified prospects is to have them referred by your mortgage broker/lender. You can also take the direct approach. If you’re arranging a showing over the phone, go ahead and ask them if they are pre-qualified. Don’t be too shy when it comes to your prospects. If you’re holding an open house and someone expresses interest in your home go-ahead and ask. Most of the time if they’re pre-qualified they love to tell you. So don’t worry about asking, it’s the right thing to do.

FSBO Tip 10. If all else fails go to where the realtors hang out.
If after a while, you’re not getting the results that you were hoping for you can always go the Realtor option.

BONUS FSBO Tip. Seek out a professional investor.
Another option is to locate a professional investor who specializes in solving creative real estate problems. These are usually honest real estate investors who have been buying houses for a number of years and are able to navigate their way this turbulent and chaotic market because of their skill and experience incoming up with out-of-the-box solutions for buying houses, especially in difficult situations. Often these are the We Buy Houses, I Buy Houses, We Buy Ugly Houses, Sell Your House, Sell My House folks. They can pay all cash, pay some cash with terms, take over payments, lease-purchase your home, or come up with a custom solution that fits your unique selling situation. They usually buy the house as-is with no contingencies or repairs and they even handle all the paperwork. And they don’t charge any fees or commissions.

If working with a professional ‘We Buy Houses’ investor makes sense to you, visit www.MSHomeSolutions.com and fill out our confidential questionnaire and tell us about your home and situation and one of our Hattiesburg investors will contact you about buying your house. There’s no obligation. If we can find a solution that works for you, you’ll have a smooth transaction, a fast close, and relief from your current stress. We work in Hattiesburg, Oak Grove, Purvis, Petal, Sumrall and throughout Mississippi.

Final Comments
These FSBO tips should give you a solid foundation to successfully selling your own home. There’s many specific ideas and recommendations that are beyond the scope of this article when it comes to pricing, preparing and staging your home, and all of the items previously outlined. You should definitely research and prepare yourself for the selling of your own home process. In the long run, it will make things easier and could either save you or even make you thousands of dollars.

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MSHomeSolutions buys houses in Hattiesburg, Petal, Oak Grove, Purvis and throughout the Mississippi (MS) Pinebelt in Lamar and Forrest Counties and can often do so in 7 days or less. We can pay all cash, take over your mortgage payments or come up with a custom solution to suit your needs. We are also specialists in working with home owners in foreclosure. We can help you SAVE YOUR HOME from foreclosure or we can buy it even if there’s no equity. For more information on how we can buy your house fast or help you avoid foreclosure, please visit our website at www.MSHomeSolutions.com or call 601-544-9400.

 

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