What are the pros and cons of selling your own home?

By: HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

Homeowners and real estate agents aren't necessarily motivated in the same way to sell a house. A real estate agent might be motivated by the desire to get the house off the market as soon as possible, because finding a buyer means getting the commission. They may not always be interested in waiting to get a higher price. For agents a higher price doesn't always mean a much higher commission. This may make homeowners feel that no one will look out for their best interests better than they can themselves. That is why people may choose to try to sell their home the FSBO way, For Sale By Owner, even though it may not be as easy as through a real estate agent.

There are pros and cons to the FSBO method, but today there are resources at a home seller's disposal that may help even without the expertise of a real-estate agent. What was previously a marketing disadvantage has now changed with the advent of FSBO-designated online real estate services. You can post your listing online and include pictures and other viewing options, such as virtual tours, all for a small fee. Real estate agents have selling resources that used to be limited to brokers, like the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This marketing tool shares listings with other agents, to match up buyers and sellers. Today, by paying a buyer's commission fee, you can list your own home on the MLS through the online services.


The networking options of personal and professional acquaintances, open houses and general word of mouth are also potential selling tools. Real estate agents may sell your house faster, but ultimately you can sell your own house often at a higher price and save a lot of money in commissions.