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FSBO or REALTOR? – How Best To Sell Your Home

Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I am the first guy to try to save money, and I understand the basic commission-saving driver of the For Sale By Owner (FSBO) group – in fact if you can sell your place at market prices and save a commission more power to you!  However could it be times have changed  in the area of real estate marketing in recent years and once you give it a try on your own should you may sign up with a Realtor?
The main reasons to chose a Realtor for the selling of Naples real estate in my view are digital marketing and international brand (there are several other reasons I can think of but these two reasons are my favorites).  Let’s take digital marketing for example.  Sure everyone seems to have a website and FSBO’s can make use them. But – all websites are not created equally. The digital networking at Coldwell Banker for example places the property in front of 12,000,000 digital viewers – not all real estate websites or marketing programs can claim this.  If you are selling, you obviously want to reach as many buyers as you can so the broker digital marketing engine might be worth the commission.
And what about the website and business networking of your individual Realtor? What do they have IN ADDITION to their broker? At we reach buyers tuned in to our specific market.  We like to invest and add our own digital marketing layer to our Broker’s digital marketing.  This one-two punch – digital marketing with the Broker plus the Realtor may be tough to beat by the individual FSBO.  If you have the resources and the technical acumen – more power to you.
International brand also matters. Many Florida real estate buyers are international buyers. It is estimated 23% of the Naples real estate buyers are from outside the United States who may be making a first trip to Naples or may be unfamiliar with the town or even the customs and laws of the United States.  So what? Imagine you are from another country and looking to buy real estate. You may not be familiar with US laws. Are you going to walk into the home of a total stranger in a foreign country and buy the home? Would you rather work with an international brand (at no significant cost difference to you as the buyer)  and let the international firm worry about the transaction? Granted, some international buyers will walk into the house of a total stranger and buy. But we think it is more likely the international buyer will fall back to a brand they know or have heard of and get help. So the FSBO may be missing out on those international buyers

There is also some recent national survey work showing an increasing trend to use a REALTOR vs. going on your own.  Jessica Lautz, Survey Research Manager for Did You Know, found “The method most used to sell a home has changed in recent years. A higher share of sellers are relying on the expertise of real estate agents and brokers to sell their home, rather than trying other methods.”
The data from Jessica’s survey found.
1) From 1991 to 2011 the share of home sellers who used a real estate agent or broker to sell their home increased from 77 percent to 87 percent.
2) Over the same time period, the share of sellers who sold their home as a FSBO (For-Sale-By-Owner) decreased from 19 percent to 10 percent.
3) Sellers use real estate professionals to help them sell their home in a reasonable timeframe, to market their home to potential buyers, and to price the home competitively.

So if you are a Realtor – go over these trends with your FSBO’s and if you are a FSBO think about using a REALTOR – they may be worth it after all. Let us know any questions you have regarding Naples real estate or lifestyle and we will be happy to help – and have a great Tuesday!.

No legal or investment advice or suggestions are being given in this Blog. Actual real estate price and sales results are subject to market forces and are not completely predictable. Please consult a lawyer or investment advisor for such legal and investment advice. The writings of this Blog are intended for the sole use of our clients.

Mark Goebel, PA is a REALTOR with Coldwell Banker on 5th avenue in Naples, Florida with 35+ years of visiting and living in Naples. After 25 years at Accenture, Mark retired as a managing director and spends his time helping non profits and building a Naples real estate team with his wife Nan. Talk to Mark and Nan about life in Naples and why they chose this place to live full-time over all others and enjoy Naples real estate.

Mark Goebel, PA
Mobile: 239.595.3921
Facebook: NaplesBestAddresses
Twitter @mcgoebel
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