If you are looking to sell a house without a realtor in Washington, it means that you can cut on commission fees – which average 5.20% in Washington compared to a national average of 5.49%. Considering that the median home price in the state is $452,400, this would mean saving $23,500 on realtor fees only.
However, trying to sell your home entirely on your own – taking the route For Sale by Owner (FSBO) – can be a real challenge, especially if you don’t have any experience with the real estate process. From improving the home’s marketability to listing it in the market and managing all the visits, you could be faced with a series of obstacles slowing you down, so it’s not always the best route to go for. Especially if you are in a hurry selling your home.
So, if you want to sell a house without a realtor in Washington, here are some important things that you will need to know.
1. Should I sell my house without a realtor?
A lot of people ask themselves this key question before making a decision on what to do with their property. And of course, the answer will depend on each specific situation. So, if you are wondering whether this option is the best for your particular context, you can use our checklist below.
Selling your house without a realtor might be right for you if…
You are looking to cut on commissions.
As we mentioned above, realtor commissions can go up to 5% or more in the state of Washington, which can translate to a significant sum, especially if you are selling around the median house price for the state. When you sell without a real estate agent, you won’t have to pay a listing agent commission, which can help you save some money.
You have a lot of time on your hands.
Time is significant factor when deciding how to sell your house. If you are not in a hurry, and you don’t mind taking longer to complete the sale, FSBO can be a good option for you. Keep in mind that selling with a real estate agent may take up to 60 days or more in Washington state. Selling on your own, however, may take up to 120 days.
You already have a buyer
If you already have a buyer in line – for example, a friend, a family member or someone recommended to you – you may not need to sell a house in Washington with a real estate agent. In this case, you might even be able to skip advertising, showings, and negotiations altogether.
You are in a hot market for sellers
If you are in a high-demand area with low inventory – such as Washington state, you can easily find a buyer without the need for an agency to help you. However, you will still have to take into account the documentation and the whole process around closing the deal.
Selling your house without a realtor might not be right for you…
You are in a hurry
As we just mentioned, taking the FSBO route can also be the slowest one – so it wouldn’t be the best option if you are in a hurry to sell a house in Washington. However, selling with a realtor isn’t the fastest one either – you can also sell your property to a trustworthy cash buyer such as Ultra Home Buyers that can close the deal in as little as 10 days.
You don’t have experience
Washington has a highly competitive real estate market, and it’s definitely not for everyone to manage successfully through it. If you don’t have any experience selling properties on your own, especially in Washington, lacking the professional guidance of a real estate agent might result in a complicated transaction.
Of course, as we just mentioned, if you want a very quick and streamlined sale, a professional cash buyer can just be the right option for you.
You want to get more money for your house
When it comes to how much money you can get for your house, there are conflicting studies on whether properties sold by the owner get a better deal than selling through a real estate agency. Even though FSBO properties can cut on realtor commissions, they may incur in additional costs (such as lawyers) that quickly add up.
On another hand, if a person going the FSBO route doesn’t have enough experience, they can also lose money by pricing too low, or driving potential buyers away by pricing way too high, which happens a lot in Washington.
2. How to sell a house without a realtor in Washington
If you are looking to sell a house without a realtor in Washington, you will have to be aware of all the things that you will have to do on your own along the way. Going the FSBO route can be stressful and overwhelming for people, especially if they are doing this for the first time.
Here is a checklist of the main steps to take if you want to sell a house without a realtor in Washington:
2.1. Improve your home’s marketability
Before you even list your property on the market, one of the first steps that you will have to take is improving your home’s marketability. Depending on the condition of your property before selling, you may not have to do anything.
However, if your home isn’t in the most optimal condition, you might have to invest some budget on minor and/or major repairs if you want to get the best deal possible. This can include, but is not limited to:
- Painting and flooring
- Fixing plumbing issues
- Fixing electrical system issues
- HVAC replacement
- Repairing the roof
While repairs are not an obligatory step, they are definitely important if you are trying to sell your house for the best price possible, especially in such a competitive market like Washington.
However, if your house is not in a good condition, and you don’t want to (or don’t have the money) to invest in repairs, you can also sell it with a cash buyer. With cash homebuyers, such as Ultra Home Buyers, you won’t have to worry about cosmetic repairs because they will take care of them.
In addition to potential repairs, you should also make sure that your house is prepared for sale by:
- Cleaning thoroughly, from carpets to windows;
- Decluttering and organizing personal items;
- Staging the space to make it look more cozy;
- Ensuring that the rooms have plenty of light;
2.2. Set an attractive home listing price
If you want to sell your house without a realtor in Washington, the second step you’ll need to take is to set an attractive home listing price for your property. While every seller wants top dollar for their house, the reality is that a lot of sellers overprice their homes, and this may lead to more time on the market and an eventual price cut.
By pricing your property correctly, you can avoid it sitting on the market for too long, driving away potential buyers. In fact, according to Zillow research, 57 percent of homes sold at or above listing price when they accepted an offer in the first week.
Sell a house without a realtor in Washington: Zillow research on time to accept offers
You may consider getting an appraisal to ensure that you are pricing your property accordingly.
2.3. Invest in home advertising
Once your home is prepared for sale, the next step is to invest in its marketing and advertising. Since it may be difficult to draw the attention of potential buyers and attract competitive offers, especially in a highly dynamic market such as Washington, here are some tips on how to make it stand out:
- Hire a professional photographer to entice potential buyers into coming for a visit;
- Craft an engaging listing description and include keywords to position your home for more searches;
- Record a video of your property to help buyers imagine it as their future home;
- Include images and list features not only of your home, but also of your neighborhood and what you have in proximity;
As a part of your advertising strategy, you can also let your friends, family and neighbors know that you are selling – they can help you spread the word around.
2.4. Don’t forget to act professionally
Of course, a big part of the FSBO process if you want to sell a house without a realtor in Washington is the way you interact with your potential buyers. Make sure that you act like a real estate professional at all times of the process:
- Answer calls no matter the time – most buyers are shopping on weekends;
- Be flexible with showings – even if there isn’t a big prior notice;
- Listen to what potential buyers have to say, and take feedback seriously;
- Don’t take criticism personally, it’s okay if your home is not everyone’s taste.
Acting like a real estate agent, even if you aren’t one, is important in order to build trust with your potential buyers, and ensure them that their money is in good hands.
2.5. Hire a real estate attorney
As opposed to other types of purchases, real estate transactions are famous for the huge amounts of paperwork during the whole process, and it’s important to know exactly what you are signing.
So, even if you want to sell a house without a realtor in Washington, you may need to hire a real estate attorney to ensure that you have all the necessary paperwork to complete the transaction. And of course, they will review all documents (especially disclosure statements), and make sure that they have been filled out correctly.
3. An alternative way to sell a house without a realtor in Washington
For a lot of people, trying to sell their property without a real estate agent simply isn’t worth the hassle. From the time needed to complete all the steps in the transaction to the numerous obstacles that may come along the way, going the FSBO route can be a challenge for the inexperienced.
However, if you want to sell a house without a realtor in Washington, For Sale By Owner (FSBO) isn’t the only way you can do that. You can also sell it to a cash homebuyer such as Ultra Home Buyers – here are some of the benefits of doing so:
- No need for repairs – you can sell your house as-is no matter the condition;
- No listings – skip the stressful listings and showings and get an offer straight away;
- Time – you can be closing the deal in as little as 10 days;
- No commission fees – forget about paying commission fees to real estate agents;
- Easy process – you get in touch with us, and we give you a competitive cash offer;
By going this route, you can easily sell a house without a realtor in Washington, skipping all the stress, hassle and anxiety of real estate transactions altogether. Do you want more information? Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!