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Sooke Road FSBO (For Sale By Owner) Needs a Reality Check

REALITY CHECK!

In this time of change in the real estate market, the marketing services of a professional REALTOR® are more important than ever. Why would a potential buyer look at your home that you’re selling yourself when he or she can see 15 similar homes in the same neighbourhood with the help and guidance of a REALTOR®. How are buyers going to find your place over the listings on the MLS®? The Internet is a powerful tool, to be sure, but again, when there are so many listings with REALTORS® on MLS.ca, why would a buyer look anywhere else?

That being said, there are plenty of for sale by owner signs around town, both the paid FSBO website type, and the dollar-store-neon-orange-and-black budget models.

I’m low on listings at the moment, so I have been sending out information packages and e-mails to selected FSBOs that I see that would be marketable properties. On my way home to Sooke the other day, I saw a FSBO sign on a house on Sooke Road near Luxton Fair Grounds. I jotted down the number, hoping to give the owner a call. I always try and do a little research before I do, and after a bit of Googling, I came across the house on Used Victoria (I’m not going to link directly to it).

I’m not interested in listing this property – at least not until the owner gives his/her head a shake and realizes there’s no way he/she is going to get $519,000(!) for a home on Sooke Road in the Glen Lake area. Not even close. Not even last year.

The ad says it’s “beautifully renovated,” but seriously. Check out these listings and sales over the past few months nearby. A buyer could have a brand new home on a quiet street for what they’re asking for an older home on a Provincial highway!  Homes along Sooke Road are selling (and currently listed) for over $100,000 less than what they’re asking.

If by chance the owner comes across this post, and would like a realistic market evaluation of the property, I’d be more than happy to provide one, free of charge, and without any obligation to list the property with me. I’ll even include a booklet of tips for owners who want to sell their property themselves. In fact, I always offer all of the above to anyone wanting to sell their own home. Just contact me anytime at 250-885-0512 or Tim@TimAyres.ca

Tim Ayres – Sooke Real Estate Professional

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  • Anonymous

    Hi – I think your post is showing a bit of ego here. The one reason folks try to sell their property themselves is to save themselves quite a huge chunk of money that a commission takes away. I’ve bought and sold a home before, and although I do know realtors work at their jobs trying to get the best price for their property, the attitude of the seller (realtor or owner) is what sells the property. Sure, the house could be beautiful or ugly or overpriced, but if the person selling it isn’t enthusiastic, unbiased, potential buyers will be turned off. I do agree that people should do their research before putting up a sale price, but that can be done in a number of ways other than relying solely on a realtor. In all honesty, while I understand where you’re coming from (I would use a realtor to sell my home), I wouldn’t hire you based on this post. It sounds like you’re more interested in the money end of it and not on customer service. I would expect to have my potential realtor call me up and speak to me in a straight-forward, yet friendly manner.

  • Thanks for the comment, anonymous. Perhaps I should give the owner a call and explain what I think of the price. But it’s been my experience that people don’t like to be told they’re wrong. Imagine if you were trying to sell your home privately, and I called you up from your sign and told you your price was out to lunch – you’d probably slam the phone down and assume I was just trying to pick up the listing, cheap.

    But, all opinions are valid, and all I was trying to get across here was that this person has grossly overpriced the listing and could have avoided that and given him/herself a chance at selling by either a)talking to a REALTOR® and getting a free no-obligation market evaluation, or b)paying a professional appraiser to do it.

    And how did you get the idea that I’m “more interested in the money end of it…”? I didn’t once mention commission or fees or money. I offered my services for free!

    Thanks again for your comment, I really appreciate the feedback,

    Tim Ayres

  • Shan

    Tim, I think your FSBO is great. Not only does this story get people out of their comfort zones it makes them think. Your home purchase and sale is one of your biggest investments that you will make in your life and trying to sell it yourself without experience is difficult. Not only from a legal aspect but people are emotional and feel that their house is of course worth more than the market will bear. A house that is properly priced will sell and for that I believe you need the help of a professional. Good for you!

  • Hi Shan,

    Thanks for the comment.

    Despite the Internet having spawned some pretty useful do-it-yourself websites which include marketing services, legal documents, and other tools for FSBOs, your best bet for the most current legal information and documents, disclosure, consumer protection, and marketing know-how is your friendly neighbourhood REALTOR®.

  • Ed

    I just sold my house (tentative) this week. By myself. I truly believe that realtors do provide some values. If they are not so overly charged, I would surely hire one.

    I interviewed a few agents before deciding to sell by myself. I sold my house with a price slightly lower than I expected, but guess what. It was higher than the prices 2 of the agents suggested me to try.

    During the period I was selling my house, some agents called in, as I expected. Some were nice people, and I talked to them. But some were deceiving and were trying to trick me to list my house with them.

  • Hi Ed,

    Congratulations on your upcoming sale – hope it holds together for you. While some people do have success in selling their home privately, many do not have the time or skill to do so. In the current market state with a lot of homes on the market, it becomes harder and harder for individuals to get a good price for their homes without the help of an agent. Qualified buyers are fewer, ad many work with agents to make sure their interests are protected. I’m not sure where your place is located, but agents in our area charge a wide variety of fees for service, ranging from flat-rate fees for basic services to varying levels of percentages for full marketing services. And of course, those rates are always negotiable; it is up to the agent and the owner to set the rate for service.

    Thanks again for your comment, and good luck!
    -Tim

  • Ed

    Hi Tim,
    It is good to hear that you have flat-fee services provided in your area. I live in Toronto and I don’t see any realtor offer this type of service.

    I think the flat-fee non-commission based approach is the way to go. The agents provide their professional services and receive what they are deserved. The harder they work, the more money they earn.

    This also eliminates the chance of getting abused by the buyers. I know a friend who abused his agent by going thru 200+ houses without making a deal. I think at least the buyers should be charged based on the number of houses they look at.