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Top 5 most common FSBO mistakes


The Top 5 Marketing Mistakes For Sale By Owner (FSBO) can easily avoid

When the real estate market cools down, the number of buyers decreases. These conditions make it more difficult to sell your home, yet some do still sell!

So why do some homes sell and others just sit on the market? The answer may have very little to do with the home and lots to do with the amount of effort the seller put in to market the home.

Here are a few of the marketing mistakes that are commonly spotted.

1.    Poor Photographs

 Pictures speak volumes and are noticed before the written word. Since it is it first thing a potential buyer will see, why leave a bad impression? The job of the photo is to entice the buyer to want to see more of the home in person. It should not give the buyer a reason to cross the home off the list right off the bat.

Don't publish photos that:

  •   Are too dark Are turned sideways in order to fit the page
  •   Show cluttered rooms
  •   Are not cropped and show unnecessary elements in the picture
  •   Show pets sleeping on furniture
  •   Show a poorly kept yard
  •   Show family members in the shot
  •   Have unrealistic dimensions for their intended use and are stretched.

 2.    Withholding Information

When there are tons of homes on the market, simply tossing out a property address while noting the number of bedrooms and bathrooms does not give enough information for a homebuyer. It doesn't tell a buyer why they should make an appointment to see the home.

  • Good marketing tells a buyer why this particular home is better than the others on the market. 
  • FSBO Home Sellers should focus on:
  • The details that make the home unique
  • Motivating factors that made the seller buy the home in the first place
  • Address a negative factor with a positive light
  • Benefits of the neighborhood

3.    Restricting Access for Showings

Being as flexible as possible when dealing with showings is a great asset. Some buyers are spontaneous and others are time-scheduled. Being able to accommodate the flexibility of show times will help generate more showings.

Don't post or print anything that is missing a showing time, as it may discourage buyers.

Never refuse a showing unless absolutely necessary. Keep these tips in mind and all will go smoothly:

 Do a walkthrough of your home at least three times each day to make small housekeeping adjustments

  •  Keep feature sheets and your sign-in book available at all times
  •  Rotate the open window throughout the home; allowing each room to air out for a time, and continuously let fresh air in.
  •  Ten minutes before the showing, ensure that all valuables are put in a safe place. 

4.    Lack of Printed Marketing Materials

You don't want to keep your home a secret. In order for it to sell, buyers need to know it is available. Advertising is essential to marketing. You need to let as many people as possible know your home is for sale by owner, and the best way to do that is to advertise.

Make sure to you use all of the easily accessible mediums in your area including:

Your local newspaper (as often as possible)

  • Daily classifieds
  • Picture classifieds
  • Weekly and/or bi-weekly ads
  • Feature Sheets
  • Handed out
  • Mailed out
  • Posted on bulletin boards
  • Local Magazines
  • Photo picture ad
  • Block letter ad
  • Internet Advertising
  • Printable sheets for viewers

5.    Poor Wording in Descriptions

For Sale By Owner home sellers beware. What you write can discourage a buyer from viewing your home or encourage lowball offers. What you may see as honest and straightforward, a buyer may view as a drawback. Don't use negative or misleading words.

For example:

  • Small or tiny:
    • Your home or condo may be cozy, but not small.
  • If it needs paint, then paint it. Advertising fresh paint puts an upside twist on the same condition.
    • Needs Paint:
  • Motivated Seller
    • A motivated seller is a desperate seller in the buyer's mind, and desperate sellers sell for much less! Try the phrase: All offers considered instead
For more detailed information on Selling your home as a For Sale By Owner listing, learn more about our comprehensive For Sale By Owner (FSBO) Selling System