Today, we’re looking at the tempting proposition of selling your home without an agent and if it can indeed work for you.
Benefits of Selling Your Own Home
1. You can save money
The potential savings you retrieve from the sale is no doubt a major motivator but just how much are we talking? Well, in Malaysia the going rate for agency commission is 2% to 3% of the home’s sale price which can be a really big number if your home has a fat price tag – what’s 3% of RM500, 000 again? That’s right, RM15, 000!
Plus, if your agent is liable to pay the GST (unless independent, most agents are) then you can go ahead and tack on 6% of the total commission payable. Now if you sold the home yourself, these expenses would become your savings.
2. You can wait for a better offer
Depending on your personal circumstances, it may not cost you anything to hold the sale, but to agents that are less dedicated to your needs; a quick commission may be all that matters before they move on to the next sale. Some may have targets to meet and thus the prospect of incurring more time, effort and money to service your sale becomes less attractive with each passing day. The owner however, may have the luxury of holding out for a better buyer.
Note that even if you hire an agent, it is still your prerogative to wait on a sale!
3. You can offer valuable property insight
A potential buyer may pose one hundred-and-one questions about the home and while you have probably debriefed your agent about its condition, it’s unlikely you have covered all areas.
As the owner, you are better equipped to advice and perhaps even convince the buyer to make the purchase. In addition, you could also help provide ancillary information regarding neighbours, safety and the like.
The Downsides of Selling Your Home without an Agent
1. It is time-consuming
It might actually be just as time-consuming as a full-time job, and you can bet that most real estate agents will attest that it actually is a full-time job! Of course most agents manage more than one property for sale or rent at a time but still, if you work 9-to-5 or are a homemaker, pay heed to the extra hours you will no doubt expend.
Moreover, depending on your job, the ability to show your house to potential buyers at their convenience may not be amenable to you if flexibility is an issue. This could lead to you missing out on meeting with qualified buyers.
2. You have to deal with buyers appropriately
People skills are also important; if you’ve house-hunted before and went through an agent, it’s quite likely that the experience of dealing one-on-one mattered somewhat to your decision.
Did the agent appear trustworthy and hardworking or would you have to do all the chasing? Well, you can expect that potential buyers will put you through similar scrutiny and it might affect their decision to purchase if you aren’t so much a “people-person”.
3. You could miss out on an agent’s resources
While it may seem like an easy job, being a good real estate agent is anything but. You’ll need to be familiar with appropriate property knowledge, the selling process and be conscious of locational factors. On the flipside, a lack of experience and resources could see you fall prey to scammers and unqualified buyers that lead to time wasted and perhaps even money lost.
Furthermore, if you need to sell your home urgently, remember that ‘veteran’ agents will most likely have a good pool of clients and leads. Whereas you may take a little more time to find potential buyers.
For me, I definitely can’t be bothered to deal with all these. If I want to sell my house, I just want to get it over with. Won’t risk my safety going around to show house myself and running up and down.