The Pros and Cons of Selling Your House Without an Agent

Jeremy BiberdorfBy: Jeremy Biberdorf

February 5, 2015February 5, 2015

The Pros and Cons of Selling Your House Without an Agent

If you are preparing to sell your house, you are probably considering the possibility of going it alone, without an agent. The benefits of a successful sale without an agent are clear—you’ll save the 6 percent-or-so sales commission that your agent would get after your home sells. This savings can mean thousands of extra dollars in your bank account at the end of the process. But being your own agent is not as easy as it may seem. I’ll cover the pros and cons below, and by the end, you’ll probably know if selling without an agent is a good choice for you.

The Pros!

You save money. That’s it. You’ve worked hard to build equity in your home. Maybe you’ve done repairs and renovations, with your own blood, sweat, and tears. You have also formed a lot of sentimental value with your house. You don’t want to lose a big chunk of that value to an agent’s fees.

If you have a realistic sense of how much your home will sell for, and the time to do all the work that selling a home entails, you might do a great job selling your own house. But real estate agents exist for a reason. Just like it was when you bought your first home, selling probably has a lot more to it than you can appreciate right now. Here is where the pros stop. Everything that follows is hard work.

The Cons!

I’m not writing this to discourage you from selling your house without an agent. It’s legal, and people do it well every day. In order to do it right, you’ll have to prepare your house for sale, market it, officially administer the sale, and close the deal.

These are jobs that a real estate agent Melbourne and beyond would perform for you and advise you about. Each step is multi-faceted. If you’re preparing your home for sale, you’ve got to clean it top to bottom, probably more so than you would do normally. You’ll also want to perform repairs to anything that would detract a potential buyer. You may not be able to detect things that home buyers won’t like, things that an agent would find and tell you about if you had one.

You’ve also got to know exactly how to price your home. It’s not as simple as looking around at what other homes sell for. There are a lot more elements to a sale, including what’s going on inside a house. If you don’t know, you might price your house too high or too low. A real estate agent Prahran through South Yarra will know more nuanced information about homes like yours, and what they sell for. They’ll also be able to draw up official contracts once a home is sold, and lots of other little details that’ll spring up while you wait for your house to sell, like answering dozens of phone calls and emails regarding the property.

Unless you can realistically tackle this project, you may do better to hire a local real estate agent. That’s not to say it can’t be done on your own, especially if you’ve done it all before. But if you are a first-timer, you may secure the best offer for your home, and sleep a little better at night, by leaving it to the professionals.

Related Links

Jeremy Biberdorf
Jeremy Biberdorf

About the Author:

Jeremy Biberdorf is the founder of Modest Money. He's a father of 2 beautiful girls, a dog owner, a long-time online entrepreneur and an investing enthusiast.

10 thoughts on “The Pros and Cons of Selling Your House Without an Agent”

  1. Emily @ Simple Cheap Mom

    Selling a house is a pretty big deal for your finances. So, you should really consider all your options. I’ve sold a couple places myself now and because I priced well and the market was good, things went quickly and smoothly. I may consider using a professional in the future if I think it would work out better for our family.

  2. Usually, purchasing or selling a home or property is one of the biggest tasks to perform. As, it requires proper knowledge and guidance to manage this process easier, else it will be recommended to employ the right real estate agent to complete this process easier and sooner than the usual.

  3. While selling your own home is completely possible I would really consider the outcome. While it can save you money initially, if your house sits on the market too long it may end up costing you more in the long run when it comes to advertising and conducting open houses. So really think about your decision before you make it.

  4. In my country a lot of the agents have almost no clue about how to entice a buyer, how to promote a sale etc. They just ‘sit pretty’ and wait for their commission. The reason many people here are going ‘over their heads’ and do the sale themselves. If you are determined and open minded, I think you can still do a good job. And money saved is money saved 😀

  5. My thoughts on this would be your knowledge on the market in the area your doing business. Agents can help out a lot if you use them. I have sold/bought enough houses to feel comfortable with the process and would just hire a real estate lawyer to draw up the paperwork!

  6. How to Save Money

    An agent would definitely be worth it, I think. They would know would how to market a place, how to answer questions, etc that should be best left to professionals.

  7. Thomas @ i need money ASAP!

    We’re looking at moving sometime in the near future. The area that we’re planning on moving to is where my wife’s family lives. We know the area quite well and have been looking for a home there. If we find one that we like we’ll probably avoid an agent to help save a bit of money. We won’t need their market advice so we’re hoping to just save a few % on the cost by just using a lawyer.

  8. I hope there is a change to the home selling process soon. I think selling on your own is a good start, but things could be better. There are just too many things you need to know and rules to follow to protect yourself when it comes to selling your house.

    At the same time, I don’t things these things warrant a flat 6% fee for the real estate agent either.

    We’ve seen some major shake ups with investing recently, and I hope real estate is next.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *