How to Sell Your House without a Real Estate Agent

Happy couple after selling house without a real estate agent

Many homeowners assume that when it comes time to sell their house, they need to hire a real estate agent. It’s the traditional thing to do, right? It’s true that a majority of home sales happen through Realtors® and their real estate brokerages. It’s also true that a traditional real estate sale will typically bring a higher sales price because the property is fixed up, staged and marketed more aggressively through the MLS and other media (depending on the agent).

Factor in the Time and Expenses

However, it’s important to know that a higher sales price doesn’t always mean a higher net return for you. Selling a home through this “normal” process takes time and will cost you money. You will be paying the agent and his/her brokerage a listing fee, and not everybody realizes that the seller is also responsible for paying the buyer’s agent’s commission, as well. These fees alone will generally account for 4-6% of the final home selling price. That means $4,000-6,000 of every $100,000!

A traditional sale of our house will also find you taking the time to prepare the property for sale. This means making necessary repairs, cleaning it up and, in some cases, having it professionally staged. It’s very common for it to take a month or longer just to get a house ready for the open market when dealing with a real estate agent. Not only does this mean more fees and repair costs, but also more time where you have to pay for your ownership expenses such as property taxes, mortgage payments, homeowner’s insurance, HOA dues and general upkeep.

Delays and Complications

Those ownership costs add up the longer it takes to sell a house. It can often take several months to effectively market the home, bring in qualified buyers, review offers and then go through the final escrow (closing) process. Even when you accept an offer, there is still no guarantee the sale will close on time or at all. Most buyers are funding the purchase through a lender (mortgage loan) and any number of factors can delay a sale, or in some cases cancel it entirely and leaving you back at square one. Something major could be discovered during a home inspection or the buyer’s funding could fall through during the underwriting process. Another common situation is the buyer’s offer is contingent upon their old house selling, so a problem with one transaction will have a chain reaction effect on yours.

The Choice is Yours to Make

We’re not trying to paint a picture of doom and gloom. We just want to provide realistic expectations for anyone who is considering selling their house through a real estate agent. If you have the time and resources, it is usually still the best way to go. It’s just not right for everyone. Every seller’s situation is unique and ultimately you have to decide for yourself which selling path you want to take.

Some homeowners simply don’t want to deal with real estate agents. Maybe they had a bad experience in the past or they just want to go it on their own. Whether you simply don’t want to work with a Realtor® or you don’t have the time and money to go through a traditional real estate sale, you have options.

Alternative Ways to Sell Your House

There are essentially two alternatives to selling through a real estate agent:

1. For Sale By Owner

You can always choose to sell the house yourself. You can put your own “For Sale” sign in the yard and find affordable ways to market the listing (Craigslist, newspaper classifieds, social media, etc.). Then, you can handle all the negotiations and paperwork yourself. Just know that selling a house is more complex than selling something else like a used car. If you go For Sale By Owner, do your research and do everything you can to avoid any problems that could come back to bite you later.

2. Sell Your House for Cash

The other alternative—and this is where PropertyLark comes in—is to sell your house for cash to a real estate investor. There are many experienced property buyers out there who are looking for houses that they can renovate and flip or fix up and rent out. They have cash and the necessary resources to close a sale quickly without fear of a mortgage loan falling through. They also buy houses in as-is condition, so that means you don’t have to worry about repairs, staging and stressful home inspections that can derail your sale.

At PropertyLark, we can get you cash in hand for your house in as few as 7 days from the time you accept our cash offer (which you will receive within 24 hours of contacting us). If you need longer to move out, just let us know. You can set your own closing date!

Contact PropertyLark Today!

Whether you want to avoid the time, expenses and hassles of a “traditional” real estate sale through an agent or you are in a situation where you need to get out from under your house as quickly as possible (financial distress, divorce, job relocation, unwanted inheritance, etc.), PropertyLark is here to help. To get your free no-obligation cash offer within 24 hours, just fill out the home seller contact form on any page of our website and let us take care of the rest!