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My Expericence Selling FSBO


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My wife and I had come to the “understanding” it was time to sell our home. Our family was growing and space was at a premium. We had also been following Dave Ramsey’s Financial Plan and were able to pay off close to $40,000 of debt in just a couple years’ thanks in part to a very cheap house payment.  We also paid cash for all of the remodels we completed, practically the entire house. It was hard for me to let go of the house because all of the work had been completed by family, friends, and myself.  The house was exactly how we wanted it and had the financial freedom to go on vacations on a whim.  So we would needed to get the most bang for our buck when selling to reatain our financial security and live in the house of my wife’s dreams. She didn’t want a palace, but a home we could stay in for 30 years and have more than one commode.

We finally decided to sell as the market picked up in early spring. Our first questions were how to handle the legalities of selling a house and what would our listing price be. I contacted consultants at FSBOFOX for services and point me in the right direction. For any legal issues I needed a lawyer. There are many good ones throughout the Iowa and Illinois area. I asked family and friends, searched the Internet, and ultimately called three real-estate lawyers and interviewed them.  All of the lawyers prices where in the same ball park, $400, and I was happy with all three. I chose to go with the lawyer who my bank used for buying our new "middle class mansion". This made communication easy with both buying and selling a house at the same time. It was stressful time in my life and a few more hair follicles closed up on my head.

When it came time to set an asking price we scoured realtors’ sites (Ruhl & Ruhl, Mel Foster, and Remax) for comparable homes in our neighborhood. We also checked the local assessor’s page for homes which have sold recently in the area. We spent hours going back and forth between $70,000 and $85,000. One number is on the low end of our market and the other at the high end. Finally after several cold drinks we decided to list at $85,000 for three reasons. One, our house was worth every penny, and the best house on the block with new mechanicals. A similar home up the street with about as much character as Lurch sold for $80,000. We could also negotiate down with the price but not up.

After ten days of anticipation and excitement of filling our flyer box, sharing our house on Facebook, Craigslist, and watching the number of views on our listing’s page go up we were able to show the house and sell it to the first buyer who walked through. HALLELUJAH the fat lady had sung!  After 45 minutes on the back deck playing it as cool as Doc Holliday and enjoying a cold Summer Shandy we settled on $83,500. The FSBO gods rained down on us from the heavens above and gave us the opportunity to purchase the home of my wife’s dreams, well I guess I kind of like too.

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