Do Buyers hesitate to open up for FSBO?

aaaaaaaaApril 7, 2011


I have my home listed for over four weeks now FSBO. 15 showings until now. First buyer who visited the home offered little less than the list price and later backed out in 2 days---reason given was "he could not arrange for the down payment money". This was first week of listing.

After, that we have not had any positive/ negative comments or remarks from the buyers. They all say that they liked the home and some say that they will call back. However, no one has come back for second visit nor with an offer. Even when asked about their feed back during their visit they have a poker face and do not express anything except some saying that the "home is good, clean and well maintained".

Question is "Do the buyers hesitate to talk directly to the owner?" And prefer "Agents" to talk about. How to read prospective buyers mind?

Other town homes in the same complex were sold within 3 to 4 weeks of listing by agents.

Any suggestions/advice welcome.

Thanks in advance.


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OMG I would never talk to the owners. I can't imagine even thinking people would tell you the truth. When I go to look at a home, where the owners are there, I smile, look and leave with my agent. I talk to her outside.

I really do not like looking at a home when the owners are there. I find myself very uncomfortable and really don't look at the house well. I spend very little time in the house. I leave quickly.

I'm sorry, I know it isn't what you want to hear, and maybe its just me. I certainly would not give negative feedback to the owners. Its like telling a mother their baby is ugly.


    Bookmark   April 7, 2011 at 11:35PM
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I may really like a house from the exterior, but pass it by, because I don't want to buy from the owner. I too hate looking at a house with the owners present, and I'd never say a word, until I was outside.

So.. I agree 100% with Jane. (sorry!)

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 6:36AM
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It is "For Sale Buy Owner" --so I have to be inside home during "Open House" or "Scheduled visit" and give them tour of the house and answer any of their questions. They do ask several home related questions and talk/stay for an average 20 to 30 mins. There is no "Seller's Agent" involved here and I have to play both roles as "Home Owner" as well as "Seller's Agent". I am sure they are aware of this before entering my home.


    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 7:17AM
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I agree with Jane and tinker. Would not say anything to the owner and would have my poker face on. Ask neutral, but relevant questions and would likely not give you any feedback that would be useful.

When I sold my house FSBO I let the buyers in and I did not give a tour etc.

Why do you have to give a tour? Is the townhouse huge and have special features you can't just list on an info sheet or mention before they go in?

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 7:36AM
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Sorry, forgot to mention, that I am not the only FSBO in this complex. Many homes here sold by Owners themselves without the "Agent" being involved on either side.

Lyfia--town home is not huge--it is around 2000 sq ft. There is no special features that buyers may not notice. But what I have noticed with the buyers is that they do not do the research before (if they are serious buyers) the visit---my home is listed in many sites that majority of buyers browse.

I will try not giving tour this time around and see how that goes. Can you please give me some more tips --if you have any?


    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 8:16AM
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From what I've read, buyers - in general - do not give a lot of feedback on homes they have looked at. Even when agents are involved, feedback often isn't given to the listing agent.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 8:56AM
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I avoid FSBOs since almost all the sellers think they are going to pocket some extra money without doing any actual work.

The often inflated opinion they have of the value is endemic (probably because they do not bother ding actual research on comps).

I rarely say anything to agents also (especially the sellers agent).

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 9:42AM
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I have been to FSBO open houses and only when they had a relative or friend there instead did I feel comfortable saying anything remotely negative.
And, when I did say something in front of an owner, they usually got so freaking defensive that I got to the point where I would just smile and say "well, that's different" (Passive aggressive Midwesterner speak for WTF?) Or they would follow you around from room to room.

When we were actively looking at listings with our agent, we did have a little chit chat afterwards about what we thought, and she would give us her thoughts too. Whether or not that information ever got back to the listing agents, I have no idea.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 9:59AM
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Instead of leading visitors on a tour, how about having an info sheet you can hand them? Highlight the great features of the home and community, have a few flattering pictures, maybe a floor plan. Then you can just say that you'll be available if they have any questions.

I'd be really uncomfortable looking around with the current owner at my side. If I had an info sheet, I could take notes on it and keep it in my files to remind me of the home later. (When you look at dozens of homes, they start to merge together in memory. A take-home sheet could help yours stand out.)

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 10:18AM
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You're literally running any potential buyers out the door, First of all, you're FSBO, and that's difficult enough to deal with. Most FSBOs overvalue their homes and are very far from treating the sale in a businesslike manner. Then you are hovering over any lookers like you're afraid they'll steal your gold bullion. No wonder you're not getting any feedback----or offers.

You need to reassess your price. Look at what's SOLD (including foreclosures and short sales) not what other homes are listed for. Then, if you really want to sell your home, price it under what's sold and get out of the way of any lookers. Go out to the car and sit or take a walk. Let the buyers discuss their likes and dislikes without them feeling like you're spying on them about whether or not they like the home.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 1:50PM
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Why don't you turn this around and ask yourself if you would give another homeowner honest feedback about thier house. How comfortable would you be viewing a potential home purchase with the homeowner hovering about? Most people would rather not make negative comments to a homeowner. And, if they are interested, they would not want to give away their level of interest for negotiating purposes.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 2:17PM
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chicagoans---I do have take home info sheet with details of the home (like year build, sq ft etc), Upgrades list and color pictures of the house (both interior/exterior).
terriks---the actual reason for me asking their feedback is not to force them to like my home or even spy on them--it is just my sincere effort to make home improvement that may appeal to other buyers.
This time around I will not hover about them. I do not want to drive away the potential buyers!!!!


    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 3:22PM
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My favorite RE agent claims that she knows folks are actually interested in a pace when they start noticing the problems and commenting on them.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 3:38PM
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Anna you don't have to leave your home when you have people looking. Just don't hover. Stay in the kitchen and let them conduct their own tour. Be there for any questions they may have. Give short factual answers. Don't go on and on. Thank them for stopping by to look at your home. Don't expect any real feed back though. Pleasantries is just about all you will get. They save the bad stuff for when they are in the car driving home. Do check your asking price and see if it is in line with others that have sold recently. You may have to drop your price if the comps and your home are equal. Good luck, NancyLouise

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 3:57PM
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Jane wrote: "I certainly would not give negative feedback to the owners. Its like telling a mother their baby is ugly."

That is just hilarious!... and true!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 9:13PM
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Anna, I'm a FSBO too. This is my fifth one. This one is harder. Don't forget, it's a buyers' market now. Things are going slower.

I always show my buyers around the place. Of course I do! I act just like a real estate agent would. I point out important things in a low-key, non-pressure, pleasant way. And they always have tons of questions. Like you said, they know you're a FSBO before they even come. I do not talk too much. I let them talk. THAT'S how I can usually tell who likes it and who doesn't. Just from chatting I get an idea if the place will work for someone but I don't expect them to tell me details about what's great and what's not great. That's my job to know before I even put it on the market. Like I know my weakness is I only have one bathroom. I don't need my buyers to tell me they can't live with that and so they're not buying it. If I don't hear from them, it might be the bathroom or it might be they don't like my kitchen cabinets. It doesn't really matter. Because I fixed and improved and staged everything I was going to and did my homework before I even put it on the market.

Do you communicate with your people by e-mail? I get a lot of feedback from them through e-mails. I'm getting a lot of people telling me they love it but they can't buy it yet for one reason or another. But they don't generally tell me the negative stuff. Like the other person said, it's like telling a mother her baby is ugly. So if I don't hear anything, I think it's safe to assume they just don't like it for whatever reason.

When I'm going to LOOK at a house to buy, I love it when the owner is there. The real estate agents never know enough. Often they haven't even seen the house before they took me there.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2011 at 11:45PM
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I agree that you don't need to show the buyers around. When we were looking at houses a few years ago we went to a couple of houses (where the owners actually had listing agents and weren't FSBO) and the owners showed us around. I was very uncomfortable because they drug things out too long. They were wanting to show me fine details when I could tell from the basic layout of the houses that they weren't going to work.

On one house we needed 5 bedrooms and it had a garage apartment which I also wanted. Turned out when I got there that 5th bedroom was in the garage. Didn't realize that until the owner had painfully slowly shown us around. If we could have walked around ourselves I would have seen this early and just left (we weren't going to overlook the lack of a bedroom we had to have.

The other house was a great location but very small rooms (and the owner hadn't heard of staging or decluttering. She opened a closet to show me it and stuff started falling out it was so jampacked).

Both of these houses had big negative issues but I wanted to be polite yet I was so annoyed with the sellers not letting us just look in peace.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 2:56AM
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"I always show my buyers around the place. Of course I do! I act just like a real estate agent would."

Except that RE agents normally do not "show my buyers around" they follow the buyers around.

A very different thing.

One of my favorite tricks is to let my wife wander around with RE agents while I actually look over the place carefully.

More than once when we then meet we simply turn and leave based on defects I have identified.

I have not used an inspecotr in 20 years, even since the last one siply dernmostrated he new far less about old homes, what actual defets are, and what needs to be corrected.

If you need an inspector to tell you galvanized steel drain lines and supply lines "may need replacement" you probably should continue renting.
ALL galvanized steel lines are past their useful life (they have not been used in that long).

Cast iron is often still fine, even with poured lead and oakum packed joints, but galvanized steel needs replacement.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 8:49AM
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Brickeyee, that IS exactly what I do.

There is no one who can show my house better than I can. When I first put it on the market, an agent called to see if she could bring someone over. Yeah, sure, com'on. I'll split the commission. I was surprised she didn't ask me any details about the house on the phone. When they got here, I found out the people don't have horses. And don't plan to get horses. I knew they wouldn't buy it. A large part of the value is in the fact that it's a horse farm. They could find a nicer house in this price range without the horse facilities. The people were trying to be polite. They wanted to give it their all so they asked a few questions. The agent had no answers. "What kind of heat is it?" She called me. "Is there any storage?" She called me. And on and on until I finally started following them and then I took over. A good time was had by all. Their kids petted my horses and played with my dog. But I knew they weren't going to buy it. It was a day out on the farm for them. I considered it practice for me, showing them around.

Nah, I wouldn't list it with an agent when I know I can do a better job (not just showing it but marketing it and handling the transaction) and pay many thousands of dollars in commission just in case a potential buyer might feel uncomfortable that I'm here. If was really worried about that, I'd pay someone a hundred bucks to show a buyer around. This is the fifth house I'm selling by-owner. I've never had a problem with it before.

And I would like to add, in case anyone gets offended, I know there are great real estate agents out there.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 11:02PM
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"A good time was had by all. "

It is not about having a good time.

Why is there no summary about the house, like an MLS listing, that has things like heat type, sewer, water, etc.?

Every RE agent I know now has a small handout that has a few pictures of the house (put it on the front to remind buyers what house it applies to) and a summary (if not almost a copy) of the MLS card.

How many rooms, how many baths, approximate size of major rooms, heat type (fuel and method), cooling, dishwasher, school districts, etc.

Go to a few open houses and get some handouts to see what is included.

No one is interested in the owner's opinion (are you going to point out problems?).
It is biased even more than an RE agent trying to make a sale.

Of course the RE agent cannot answer any questions.
Without an MLS card no on knows anything about the house except for you, the owner.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 10:12AM
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"Of course the RE agent cannot answer any questions.
Without an MLS card no on knows anything about the house except for you, the owner."

Many times a property had been listed before and I pull up all old data and pictures in the MLS and tax records. That will give me a good idea and information about the house. Here, the average home is resold about every 5 years. (However, as was said above, without MLS data this info. is not available)

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 12:44PM
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'I have to play both roles as "Home Owner" as well as "Seller's Agent". I am sure they are aware of this before entering my home.'

so they're treating you as they would treat an owner's agent.

You cannot expect potential buyers to spill their guts to someone with whom they may be negotiating a purchase.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 4:21PM
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Brickeyee, you are ASSUMING I don't give out any information packets. Of course I do. In fact, I give out more information than I have ever received from any of the 100 houses that I've looked at in my lifetime. Let me tell you what my packet consists of: an information sheet with pictures and basic information, a more detailed sheet with importants stats like measurements, taxes, age of systems, etc., a copy of the plat, a copy of the appraisal, and a sheet from a lender who is familiar with the property. If they express further interest, I also have the local newspaper on hand as well as brochures about our lake and other interesting things in the area. You probably assumed I don't give out a packet since the real estate agent who I told the story about didn't know anything about the property and had to keep calling me. I gave her the packet when she arrived. I've never gotten that kind of good information myself. Usually it's like pulling teeth when I'm looking at a house and I want to know something. I feel lucky when the agent prints out the MLS sheet for me and most of the time it doesn't answer nearly all my questions or it's outdated information. Like the last house I made an offer on, the agent told me the taxes were $6,000. but later when I did my own digging, I discovered they were $7,000. My buyers don't have to worry about it.

And what's wrong with having a good time? These people were not looking for anything like this place and they were not buying and even if they were, so what if they enjoy themselves? Actually, I DO want my buyers to have a good time when they come here. I want it to be nothing but a pleasant experience so that they picture themselves having a wonderful life here.

Are you a real estate agent?

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 10:56PM
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Question is "Do the buyers hesitate to talk directly to the owner?" And prefer "Agents" to talk about. How to read prospective buyers mind?

When we were house hunting my husband saw several ads for FSBO homes that he wanted to tour. In his mind, he would be saving money that way. Of course the seller expects that HE will pocket more money with FSBO, so buyers and sellers are working at cross-purposes here. Anyway, we looked at a few. In every case we stayed longer than we really wanted to. We felt it would be rude to eyeball it and say, "No way" right off the bat, as we did with any unsuitable homes our realtor showed us. We weren't going to say, "OMG the wallpaper is hideous, that's going to have to come down!" to a lady who is proudly showing off her home decorating talents from 1973.

OTOH, if you see a house that you think you do want, talking to the sellers is great, because they will often reveal things that a good salesman would keep mum about, LOL.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 8:17AM
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A lot of the advice above is correct. Buyers would certainly not give negative advice to an owner and if they really liked it they wouldn't compromise their negotiation. But, I disagree when you say you haven't had any feedback. You have had feedback in the manner of not receiving an offer. This can only mean a couple things. 1. Not enough exposure to the market. 2. Overpriced. Price point is the number one factor of selling or not selling in this market. There are too many properties. You need to market your home as if it is a competition you want to win!

Here is a link that might be useful: North Andover condominiums

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 8:45AM
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"Are you a real estate agent?"

Nop, just an investor who has gotten tired of FSBO sellers over the years who really do not know what they are doing and almost universally overvalue their houses.

With the market downturn in many areas, and at least a stall in most of the others, the FSBO houses seem to be sitting even longer.

No offers IS a comment on perceived VALUE.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 9:17AM
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What the others have said about not leading prospects around. I've been to a couple of FSBO, mostly out of curiosity, and the only one I recall being a comfortable experience was one in which the owners handled the situation completely professionally: The woman had taken the kids out for the day while dad opened the door to us, showed us where the info and sign-in sheets were and then told us he'd be outside on the front porch if we had any questions. And that was that.

I also recently stopped by an open house in the area being listed in the traditional way, ie, via a real estate agent. However, the owner chose to stay in the house throughout the entire open house period. This was a 2+ million dollar barn conversion filled with antiques. Was that why the owner was there? I don't know, but what I do know is that his presence made the whole visit very awkward. Like one person commented, it was impossible to leave as soon as I wanted to, and I had to come up with all sorts of flattering things to say about a place I did not like at all.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 12:11PM
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Go outside to the yard/deck and allow them to tour the home alone. Just tell them you will be on the deck if they have any questions and tell them to allow themselves out when they are done. If deck isn't a good option, sit in your car in the garage or sit in the garage on a lawnchair with a book. Just stay out for their way. they can find the rooms themselves. they don't need to be told that a certain drawer has special hinges, or whatever other stuff you might point out.

DO NOT ask for feedback, ever. Just thank them for coming (if they come out to the desk to state they are leaving, which half of them will based on my experience). Just be cordial and thank them for coming and wish them a good day. they might have questions at this point..give them flyer, website, whatever needed. Track who really might show interest and follow up later to see if they found a home or if they are interested in another look, etc or if an offer comes in.Do this by gut from the converstaion, don't ask outright. I followed up a few weeks after a showing to someone that was interested. I followed up to let them know when another offer came in...and they ended up coming for a 2nd look and they offered also and they ended up buying it.

Realize that many times lookers will say that they will call you or be back because they know you are the owner and they don't know how to say NO to your face or don't want to let you down so they leave it open ended. Not bad intentions on their end. You usually can tell they are not interested.

I sold FSBO multiple times so am speaking from experience.

Sounds like you are likely priced well enough else you would not be getting traffic as you described.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 1:00PM
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Sweet tea, that's a good idea to follow up if you get another offer. After they leave, I never contact them unless they contact me. Or if there's an important change, I might shoot out an e-mail to all my prospects. But you can't talk someone into buying a house. And I agree with what someone said that you should never ask a potential buyer why they're not buying it. BUT if someone is just slow getting around to things, or they're waffling, giving them a heads-up that they could be losing their chance could work out really well, like it did in your case.

Brickeyee, I hear you about being frustrated with some FSBOs. I've been frustrated with agents. There's good and bad in both.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 11:37PM
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A year ago we were interested in buying a FSBO across town. It's a great old/unique home and the owners were very nice and we loved the location. They let us look around on our own, and when done, we chatted with them about the home's history and other small talk. They answered any questions we had.

After our second visit, we made a full asking price offer. Unfortunately, we couldn't sell our home, and this was a contingency with our offer. We were actually the 3rd offer that fell through due to prospective buyers not being able to sell (tough market here). 40 or so days after our offer, they hired a real estate agent and then sold their home about 3 months later (sold for 8% less than our agreed price). We still had the option to buy it for the higher price, but our home wouldn't sell for our moderate asking price and we weren't desperate to sell.

So asking price is important, but timing and luck (the right buyer) always play a role in these things. Price may be more important with homes that are very similar to others for sale. And of course, some buyers/sellers have to move.

We sold FSBO in 1999, and it was definitely a sellers' market then. At that time, we dropped our initial asking price then sold in about 30 days.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 4:15PM
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"I hear you about being frustrated with some FSBOs. I've been frustrated with agents. There's good and bad in both."

In 30+ years I have encountered a very few lousy agents.

Every FSBO seller except one or two (though I did stop even dealing with them about 10 years ago) was off in left field.

They often new vanishingly little about the actual process ("Our attorney is handling everything.") and every one had an exaggerated view of the value of their house.

ALL of them.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 10:02AM
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Brickeyee, I'm guessing that, as an investor, you look for bargain deals. And I'm guessing that most FSBOs don't want to give you a bargain, and that's why you get frustrated with them.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 10:18AM
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every home that is for sale is really for sale by owner. Meaning, the owner is selling their home. However, some owners hire real estate agents to market the home and coordinate the sale. In the end, it is the owner that sets the price regardless if an agent is hired or not. You can find many over priced homes regardless if owner is marketing or realtor is marketing. If home is overpriced, a buyer will typically pass on it quickly and hopefully won't waste time looking at it unless an overblown listing or listing that is too generic(by listing, I mean internet listing, flyer, MLS, craigslist, etc)

things have changed a lot in the past 10 years regarding buying/selling of homes, mainly due to the internet. Buyers and sellers have more open access to comps, homes that are for sale, photos, maps, subdivisions, etc.

I do think this original poster's home is likely priced fairly, else they would not have gotten the amt of traffic in a few short weeks. The reason they have not gotten an offer is more likely related to the fact that the home just recently came on the market. Even when priced fairly, you can't always expect an offer in the first couple weeks.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 10:31AM
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I did visit 3 "Open House" this past weekend in my area. 1 by FSBO and 2 by Agents. In each case, the home owner or agent showed us around the house. There was not much of difference between their presentation. At the same time of my visit, there were other 2 separate visitors--so agent took us around as a group. Homes that I visited were not big either(compared to my house)--FSBO was 1900sq ft and agents about 1800 to 2140 sq ft. I did not see any difference in the way I conduct the open house/ showing either.

However, this time around I did get feedbacks like:

1. My basement is not finished though clean and neatly maintained.
2. The buyers wanted washer/dryer in the second floor --in the bedroom floor. I have it in the basement.

Both I cannot do any thing about it. Washer/dryer was put in my the builder and it is standard in all the town homes in this complex. There is no place to hook up washer/dryer in the second floor either.
Basement finishing, it is not one day affair(time)--it needs planning/city permits and big expenditure.

Just wanted to update.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 11:09AM
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At the risk of stating the obvious, when a seller receives feedback like "the house smells like animals", or "that orange bathroom is obnoxious", these are things you can fix so that they are not distracting (or a turnoff) to prospective buyers.

When you hear feedback like "I wish it had a 2nd floor laundry", or "we would like a finished basement", what this is really saying is: "The other homes we were looking at in this price point had these options and we wish this house did too".

Again, it comes down to price. A seller isn't expected to up and finish a basement based on a prospective buyer comment, but a seller that wants to sell their house would be smart to consider dropping the price to compete against less well-appointed homes for sale.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 12:37PM
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revamp--other homes in my complex, with smaller sq ft, unfinished basement and without 2nd floor laundry is listed for lot more than my list price.
It is definitely not the price. I have done lots of research related to my complex and area sold home, listed homes etc etc. It is just that new and young prospective buyers do not want to invest time/money in home improvements --at least in urban areas, like me an old timer. As someone mentioned they are looking for bargain. I am a buyer too. It is just that I have to sell my home to buy another.

Also, some buyers are just in this country from past 3 to 4 years and have no knowledge of american homes leave alone home improvements. One should watch "Property Virgins" on HGTV--may be both seller/buyer will learn something.
This is purely my personal experience and I do not intend to offend any one .


    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 1:58PM
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other homes in my complex, with smaller sq ft, unfinished basement and without 2nd floor laundry is listed for lot more than my list price.

What they are listed at means practically nothing. It's what they sell for that counts. The only way to overcome a negative that you can't change is with a lower price.

And as far as buyers opening up to a FSBO, even if they are showing the house in the same manner as an agent buyers just aren't going to be as open with negatives with a home owner. Like jane said, it's like telling a mother her baby is ugly.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 2:08PM
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i called a fsbo years ago per a newspaper classified ad. i learned the home did not hsve a bsmt, which i wanted. i politely told the owner that this home won't work per the bsmt issue. owner persisted to try to get me to come see the home, stating there is an attic with plenty of storage. I mentioned that i had to have a bsmt, couldn't keep the dog in the attic.

maybe this is why some buyers hesitate to give feedback directly to the owner.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 4:21PM
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I understand if the house does not meet the buyers requirements. I myself have some "must have" requirements, while I see the home to buy.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 5:09PM
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"Brickeyee, I'm guessing that, as an investor, you look for bargain deals. And I'm guessing that most FSBOs don't want to give you a bargain, and that's why you get frustrated with them."

I am not always looking for investment houses having moved three times in the past 10 years.

The FBO sellers all seem blind to he defects and problems in their properties, and base their prices on what they "heard so-and-so up the street sold for."

More than one time I had seen the house up the street, and it was better maintained and more up to date.

Many have odd layouts, poorly done kitchens, and lower end appliances in $750,000 houses.
While the seller may be satisfied with what they have, they fail to even look at the competition in their price range, let alone the actual closed sale prices.

I am also not going to wait two weeks while they huddle with their attorney to review a standard contract.

They are trying to "save the commission" and seem to have little idea of all the details.

Termite inspection? (A typical seller expense in my area).

One had a major easement for a city storm drain running through the back yard under the patio they had recently installed.

1950 electrical in a 1950 house with no upgrades?
Every time the AC came on the TV went nearly black form the voltage drop.
They turned out to have a 30 amp service.

Required disclosure form? (though I never rely on them)
What is that?

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 7:00PM
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I bought the house I live in now from a FSBO. It's true, she didn't know anything about the process. I know the process so it was no big deal, I just told her what we needed to do. It couldn't have gone more smoothly. I also sold the one I had at the time FSBO. An acquaintance, with the same type of property, in the same neighborhood, listed his with the local agent. It's still for sale. 5 years later. Now I'm getting ready to sell a second time FSBO. My point is, like someone else said, in the end, it's up to the owner whether it's overpriced, underpriced or priced just right. Whether or not he has an agent.

Brickeyee, am I understanding you right? Are you saying FSBO's have poor layouts?

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 12:57AM
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"It is just that new and young prospective buyers do not want to invest time/money in home improvements --at least in urban areas, like me an old timer."

Anna - I just read somewhere about how buyers today are very different from buyers from the 70s (for example). Today, people do NOT want to do home improvement projects on the weekends. Years ago, I think people took pride in doing home improvement. Now, they say they are too busy or have other priorities. The article I read, said it much better than what I wrote and it really made it clear to me WHY so many of today's buyers are wanting updated and move-in ready homes. And as a younger/youngish buyer myself, I can relate but at the same time I'm not afraid to do some home improvment projects.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 9:37AM
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maybe young buyers don't have time to do weekend home improvements because their jobs expect them to have blackberries and laptops and do some weekend work as well as longer hours on weekdays so they are tired on the weekends. years ago, you worked 40 hours and were done. these days, many workers are forced to pick up the workload from folks that were laid off else be the next on the list if they don't work as much.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 4:00PM
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Sweet tea, also years ago it was common for the husband to go out to work and the wife to stay home. The husband would come home and dinner would be made, errands would be run, the daily household chores taken care of. All he had to do was mow the lawn on Saturday and pick a project to work on with all the tools he got for Father's Day. Whereas nowadays, usually both people have to work outside the home and they often share the chores--take turns cooking, cleaning, laundry, yard work, running the kids here and there. Both people are exhausted. Maybe that's why a lot of young couples want move-in ready houses.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 10:45PM
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Another reason why they are choosing move in ready homes now is because the inventory is so great... why buy a fixer upper when there are 10 other great deals to choose from that are not fixer uppers.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 7:11AM
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so many great tips and advice. thank you all!

we just listed our house on zillow. we sold our last and bought our current house - both without an agent, 20 years ago. so i feel hopeful about doing it again.

ours is priced 5K over a house that sold on the other end of our street. that has AC, and a bit larger yard, a different layout. our's has 5 instead of 4 bedrooms, no central air. a bit of apples and oranges.

we are open for negotiation - on price and also furnished as is, except for some furniture we want to take with us. we plan to move from east coast to the west - So Cal.

my question is how do you qualify the people who want to come and look? i get a message with phone number and they seem usually willing to say where they live, where they work, own or rent property.

what are your favorite ways to list your property? at what point do you get a lawyer?

thanks for any any and all advice.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 11:44AM
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One thing to remember about buyer feedback is that the feedback really isn't intended for the seller of a home. The feedback that I give to my buyer's agent is to help *my* agent find *me* the perfect (or almost perfect) house.

So if I look at a house and the floor plan is all wrong, I can tell that to my buyer's agent, and explain what I really need/want. "The kitchen shouldn't be open to any other room, but it needs to be right next to the dining room."

Telling a FSBO owner that is useless--there's no way they can change the layout of their home. And if their kitchen is completely open to their family room, there's no way I'm buying that house. It could be a wonderful house, perfectly maintained, nicely updated, but if "kitchen not open to any other room in the house" is one of my must-haves, then I'm crossing that house off my list.

So it could just be that the OP's lookers are looking at the house and just not seeing something major that they want or need. And there's no point in telling the OP, say, that they need the laundry on the bedroom level when it is in the basement, because there is no way for the OP to remedy that. So they say something nice about the house and move on.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 2:06PM
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"we sold our last and bought our current house - both without an agent, 20 years ago."

You are aware of the law changes in the past 20 years?

Lead paint, etc.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 2:55PM
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