In this section, I will set out the reasons for and against being your own agent and when it might be an appropriate choice.
Reasons for selling yourself
These sales are generally called Private Sales or Sales by Owner.
Two main reasons people choose this method:
- People want to try and save commission.
- They don’t have the confidence in the agents they have seen to do a better job than they could do themselves.
All else being equal, these reasons may seem a sensible choice. A good reason to sell privately is that you generally have the ideal buyer who will pay above market price. In this case, you may not have market your property, and the sale can completed. Even in this case, do you know how to negotiate the most possible price or result and how do you know someone would not have paid more. In these cases, quite often agents are called in to negotiate the best deal.
Often, a private vendor is trying to run from a standing start. I would like to talk briefly about process. Whether you are selling your home, having an operation or building a boat you need a professional who understands the every aspect of selling such as: marketing, contracts, negotiation, targeting the right buyer, method of sale, and the right questions to ask potential buyers are just a few of the things a professional agent has to do and coordinate. It is not good enough to be good at a single aspect of selling such as marketing.
Real estate agents and agencies have systems and processes in place and the individual agent has trained and learnt from experience.
Even a relative novice will still have more experienced people in the office if they need help. Often, when buyers inspect a property, they can criticize it and a good agent unlike a private owner knows how to deal with these comments and knows the questions to ask. An agent or agency as they may have been working with them and know their situation.
There are also a number of major websites that do not accept private advertisements. As a private seller, there are also a number of companies in all aspects of the sale that can be difficult to one off custom designs. Also, importantly, a private seller cannot get the benefit of customers being cross-referred.
In conclusion, successful selling privately tends to be more a matter of good luck than good management.
It is said that the man who represents himself in court, has a fool for a client. Much the same might be said of selling privately. It is often very hard to be objective about your own affairs.